Summer sun, sandy beaches, warm breezes, but sometimes it RAINS!
It’s a good idea to have a couple of rainy day activities on that Plan B vacation itinerary for the unplanned cloudburst or occasional cool day that make the beach a little less inviting, especially if you have children in tow. Fortunately, there are many indoor destinations within an hour’s drive of Our Summer House vacation rental in South Haven, Michigan, that will keep the family occupied and happy.
One such place is the Curious Kids’ Museum in nearby St. Joseph, Michigan, situated on the bluff overlooking beautiful Silver Beach and Lake Michigan. The museum has been in operation for almost 30 years, providing interactive, hands-on exhibits for children ages 1 – 10 years old. Founded by educators and parents, the museum is dedicated to the mission of inspiring learning through exploration and fun. Children can experience a kid-size Farmer’s Market, be a doctor in a Vet Clinic, pilot a ship on the Great Lakes, or construct a playground from giant building blocks. Visitors can also experience the physics of sound, make bubbles dance with the musical bubble exhibit, learn about simple machines, or what it is like inside an emergency vehicle. An added attraction is the Toddle Farm exhibit for very young children with age-appropriate exhibits to explore in an area separate from the busy-ness of the rest of the museum.
Curious Kids’ Museum opened a sister-site in 2009 called the Discovery Zone, which is a short walk away, down the bluff at the Silver Beach Center. Though geared to children ages 3 – 14, the exhibits at the Discover Center will delight the kid in everyone. There is a 25-foot Lighthouse Climbing Tower, a Lake Michigan Water Table complete with locks and dam, wind jets, lake currents, and shipwrecks. There is also a Wave table and Water Power Tower to learn more about wind and water, and a demonstration of a Water Bio Sand Filter that is a real example of a system that is used to provide clean water to families in third world countries where clean water is not readily available. Another popular exhibit is the Whisper Dishes in the outdoor science gallery where kids use sound waves to hear whispers 60 feet away. Discovery Zone also features travelling installations like “Dream with Da Vinci,” which includes catapults, parachutes, a hang glider, gear table/wall, artwork, and more Da Vinci-inspired creations.
In addition to being family-friendly and a great way to spend a rainy afternoon, the museums won’t break your vacation budget. Admission is $6 per person (12 months and older) to the Curious Kids’ Museum or 3 years and older to the Discovery Zone. Joint admission is $10 for both museums.
Curious Kids’ Museum, 415 Lake Blvd., St. Joseph, MI- geared for ages 1-10.
Summer Hours: Monday thru Saturday: 10am – 5pm; Sunday: 10am-4pm
Curious Kids’ Discovery Zone, 333 Broad St., St. Joseph, MI- geared for ages 3-14.
Summer Hours: Monday thru Saturday: 10am – 5pm; Sunday: 12pm – 5pm