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Parents Magazine ranks Madison Children’s Museum 5th best in country

The Wisconsin State Journal

By Samara Kalk Derby

The Madison Children’s Museum was named one of the 10 best children’s museums in the U.S. by Parents Magazine in a ranking that came out Monday online.

Writer Karen Cicero selected winners by surveying the leading children’s museums that belong to the Association of Children’s Museums, then focused specifically on museums with a lot of exhibits aimed at kids under age 3.

The Madison Children’s Museum was ranked fifth and selected based on several criteria: creative educational exhibits, special programs and events, healthy lunch spots, nursing areas, family rest rooms, and stroller parking.

The article will be in the March print edition of the magazine, which hits newsstands in mid-February. It specifically highlights the museum’s environmental friendliness and its four-season green rooftop.

“It’s gone green,” Cicero writes. “Check out the nature-inspired exhibits this Wisconsin museum added when it moved into a new environmentally friendly building last August. Up on the roof, your kid can plant in the children’s garden, collect eggs from the chicken coop, or learn about homing pigeons.”

While the museum was built with and for the local community, it is wonderful to have its local approach validated by the national press, said Ruth Shelly, executive director of Madison Children’s Museum.

“For us, showcasing our local community is something that makes us unique and worth coming for,” she said. “When people come to Madison, they want to see something representative of south-central Wisconsin. They don’t want to see a cookie-cutter copy of another children’s museum that they’ve seen elsewhere in the country.”

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