Open Wed–Sun 9am–4pm, plus late on Thur til 8pm. • Get tickets.

Open Wed–Sun 9am–4pm, plus late on Thur til 8pm. • Get tickets.

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Museum News – November 2019

Featured Events

Celebrate the holidays in a winter wonderland, November 16 – January 5 at Madison Children’s Museum

By popular request, Madison Children’s Museum is expanding on our holiday season programming to bring you eight weeks of holiday magic. Explore cold weather, ice and snow, folklore, tastes, and the unique festivities of wintertime. Visit the museum for seasonal decorations (great for family photos), crafts fit for gift-giving, performances, special events, and more!

November Winter Wonder Weeks Special Events:

Shine On Madison
Saturday, November 16, 5–8 p.m.

The museum stays open late for the Madison Winter Night Market and accompanying holiday illumination. Featuring special light-themed crafts.

Winter Magic Day
Saturday, November 23, all day

For the first time in forever, the museum hosts a celebration of the magical power of winter with ice-themed activities and sing-alongs.

Dressing up as your favorite character, reindeer, or snowperson is encouraged.

We  welcome members of the cast of Verona Area Community Theater’s production of Disney’s Frozen Jr. as our special guests. Their show sold out in record time, but you can still meet the young actors as your kids’ favorite Frozen characters during Winter Magic Day. The museum is pleased to support youth theater and the arts in our community.

Viv Ncaus Hmong Dance Performance
Sunday, November 24, 1–1:30 p.m.

Enjoy a performance of traditional Hmong dance and learn about Madison’s Hmong New Year celebration taking place November 29–30.
More special events are coming up in December and January, so see our Winter Wonder Weeks page for the full schedule.

Tickets available now for Tea & Trains! 

Saturday, December 7, 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Madison Club

For over 30 years, Tea & Trains has been a holiday tradition. This family friendly event features a holiday high tea, model trains, storybook reading, silent auctions, and more—all to benefit Madison Children’s Museum! Last year tickets sold out weeks before the event, so get yours now.

Toddler Date Night

Friday, November 22, 5:30–7:30 p.m.

Join us for a night celebrating everything wonderful and woeful about parenting a toddler! Children’s activities include a handprint craft keepsake, a wobbly walkers contest, and a ball pit-inspired playroom. And just for parents, we’ll have a signature “mocktail,” a chance to confess the reasons for your toddler’s most terrible tantrums, and finally a dramatic —but censored—reading of F*%$, Now There Are Two Of You, by Adam Mansbach.

 Other Programs

Wednesday, November 6, 5–8 p.m.

On the first open Wednesday night of each month, we invite our entire community to enjoy the museum for free. This month we’re exploring the wacky side of music, with recycled-art instrument making, a theremin demonstration, and more.
Free Family Night is an Access for Everyone program. Learn more about Free Family Nights...

Wednesday, November 11, 5–8 p.m.

Join us for visiting hours just for children and families affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and/or sensory challenges. Sensory-Friendly Museum Times are free to all attendees. Pre-registration is not required, but pre-registered families will be able to take advantage of express check-in. Learn more and register online...

Adult Swim: Wizard Academy Yule Ball

Friday, December 13, 6–10 p.m.

Back by popular demand, Adult Swim reprises our Wizard Academy theme; this year we’re channeling the festivity and drama of the Hogwarts Yule Ball! Dance to the live music of Seasaw (the Wyrd Sisters weren’t available); compete for the Tri-Wizard Cup; unfog your future with divination lessons; craft potions, wands, and (as an add-on activity) dragon’s-eye amulets! Previous Wizard Academy Adult Swims sold out quickly, so get your tickets now!
(Adult Swims are for grown-ups age 21+; don’t worry we do kid-friendly Wizard Academy Days too. Keep reading this newsletter to learn when we schedule the next one.)
Visit our website for a full list of upcoming programs and events.

Kids make the case

Madison Children’s Museum: More than Nice, Necessary

Madison Children’s Museum is more than just a fun place to play; the museum is a critical part of the infrastructure that supports all children and families in the Madison and Dane County area. We asked experts within the museum and community leaders why Madison Children’s Museum is important, but we are letting our most important constituency do the talking!

Exhibits Update

Changes coming to the Community Concourse

Since the museum opened in its current location, visitors have been greeted when they walked in by the splashing sounds of the Laminar Ladder, more commonly known as the water feature. This winter, we will say goodbye to the Laminar Ladder. In its place, we’ll be launching a few limited-time exhibits through winter and spring. Our in-house exhibits team is constantly evolving the space to make room for new creations, and we look forward to seeing what surprises they have in store for our visitors
Also, please note that the Urb Garden (outside of the Wildernest) is now closed for the season. Our Rooftop Ramble and Clubhouse remains open during the winter, so be sure to bring your coats when you to go the roof for seasonal outdoor playtime.

Meet the Museum Staff

Laurie Rossbach, Art Studio Manager

Even in a staff full of creative people, Laurie stands out. Originally from New Orleans, before Laurie came to the museum she worked as a textile designer, sculptor, and as an art teacher in a private school. After visiting the museum in its old location with her (then infant) son she fell in love with the museum and knew she wanted to work here. We agree: it’s a perfect match. Laurie’s creativity and artistic skill now touch all aspects of the museum.

Laurie is our Art Studio Manager, working from her office within the Art Studio on the second floor. In addition to keeping that popular exhibit space running, she teaches classes, leads programs, and even works a bit behind the scenes on the occasional exhibit. (Recently, she helped create the new Windows to the Past: A Stitch in Time exhibit on the first floor.) She loves helping to plan and execute our theme days and Adult Swim events, and particularly enjoys getting to transform our Celebrations Room into temporary exhibits, most recently turning it into a jungle maze during the summer and a black-lit “Glow Zone” for Halloween. Laurie tells us that she loves sharing art and creativity with the public and “collaborating with a team that are some of the kindest, most fun and quirky people you will ever meet.”

Outside of the museum, you can often find Laurie, along with a few other museum co-workers, performing with Forward! Marching Band. She also enjoys Medieval reenactment and cosplay. When you see Laurie in the Art Studio, ask her about her latest creation; she constantly makes crafts, miniatures, puppets, and large scale sculptures.

Giving thanks for those who give wonder!

This Thanksgiving, we’ll be giving thanks for all those generous people who have joined our new Wonder Makers community of giving this year. By giving $250 and more to the museum, they help make developmentally critical play available to all children. 
Joining Wonder Makers at Madison Children’s Museum gives you the chance to connect with other museum supporters who know that play is fun and fundamental for children’s growth and enjoyment of life. Learn more or become a Wonder Maker today!

Put us on your wish list!

Give (or get) Madison Children’s Museum Membership

Experiences are more meaningful than things! (And, let’s be honest, do you really need another plastic or plushie something cluttering your kid’s floor?) When friends and relatives ask what you want this holiday season, why not suggest they give your family membership at Madison Children’s Museum? Send them the link to our gift membership page to learn how they can give a year of creative play, learning, and discovery.

Madison Children’s Museum connects children with their families, their communities,
and the world beyond through discovery learning and creative play.

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