A Parent’s Guide to the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum

Grand Rapids Children’s Museum is a Hit Every Time

I took my kids to the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum again recently. And it’s still amazing. Just like last time. Just like every time.

After this visit I asked my kids, ages 7, 4 and 2, what their favorite parts were. Granted, my 2 year old couldn’t really speak for himself, but that didn’t stop his sisters from articulating what they thought were his favorite moments at the museum.

GRCM discs on wheel

They listed everything.

Art, bubbles, Little GR, food/grocery, music, giant foam blocks, sand, hula hoops, play stage, and on and on.

GRCM bubbles GRCM climbing wall GRCM art table

When I asked about their least favorite parts, they were puzzled. They didn’t have a least favorite part.

SEE ALSO: Amazing Dinosaurs Crash Into the GRCM this Spring!

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What’s Inside the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum

The museum boasts two floors of exploration, imagination and learning. When you first enter it can be hard to choose where to go first because there are enticing exhibits in every direction.

Most kids will want to just stay at the first exhibit they land on, but you’ll want to encourage them to move along after a few minutes if they want to take it all in within a couple of hours. After we had seen it all I let my kids revisit their favorite spots. We were there just over two hours, though we could have easily stayed longer.

GRCM stage

They have lots of space to hang coats and the whole museum is open enough for strollers. Some areas (like under the treehouse) have nice little spots to park a stroller and let your toddler hop out to play. And even though this little wonderland can be packed with kids, the sound levels never get intense nor do you feel cramped. I’m claustrophobic and I didn’t feel closed in at any time, which is always my worry when I go to a popular place like this. The designers of the museum put a lot of thought into the layout and flow.

I also appreciated the beautiful walls of windows that afforded me great views of the city while my kids played.

IF YOU VISIT THE GRCM

The museum, located in downtown Grand Rapids, is open every day but Monday. They are open until 8:00 on Thursday, and admission is only $1.75 for Family Night on Thursdays, 5:00-8:00 PM.

11 Sheldon Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503 | 616-235-4726 | www.grcm.org | FACEBOOK

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PARKING

Be prepared to walk a block or two to the museum and bring change for a parking meter.

The Children’s Museum does not have a dedicated parking structure, but with ample street and lot parking around the museum, this isn’t a problem. There are even spots right outside the museum’s doors, if you’re lucky. We found an open parking meter right across Fulton and got two hours parking for only $2.50. (I consider this a deal over parking lot rates and the rates I paid to park when I was a student at Michigan State!) I did not have enough stray quarters in my car to feed the meter, but the lobby of the museum has a handy change machine.

This is how far away we parked. That’s closer than spots I can get at Meijer Gardens!

Children's Museum Outside

GRCM windows

INDIVIDUAL TICKETS VS MEMBERSHIP

Tickets run $8.50 normally, with special deals for school faculty, military, and seniors. A family membership (Level 2) is $85, which gives a year of free entry to two adults and the children in their household.

Memberships make sense for families that would go to the museum more than twice a year.

The Children’s Museum is the perfect place for indoor fun when it’s too hot or cold or wet to play outside, no matter the age of your kids.

Tell us, what’s your favorite part of the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum? What tips do you have for parents visiting for the first time?

Grand Rapids Children's Museum Parents Guide tall

By | 2017-05-12T14:41:01+00:00 March 22nd, 2017|Categories: City of GR, GR Children's Museum, Guides, Museums, Place, Reviews, Travel Grand Rapids Tips for Families|5 Comments

About the Author:

April H
April is a stay-at-home-working-mom hybrid who balances her time between managing a household and using her editor brain to find all the typos in her friends’ emails. In her occasional free time she enjoys reading, quilting, antiquing and photography. She lives in Grand Rapids with her husband and three children.

5 Comments

  1. Janelle May 6, 2017 at 7:58 am - Reply

    I’d also add under the membership section that the GRCM has a free cultural exchange with other West Michigan attractions for kids. There’s a different partner each month, it’s a great additional benefit!

  2. Marie Simmons via Facebook December 30, 2015 at 7:16 pm - Reply

    Love this place. My kids usually stay 3 hours but would spend the entire day if I would let them. 😉 totally worth the membership. We get the level 1 plus, $70. One adult and all children in family.

  3. Quinn Holwerda via Facebook December 30, 2015 at 4:15 pm - Reply

    We received a family membership for Christmas! So excited to put it to use on blustery winter days. And I am anxiously waiting for the list of places that our membership gets us discounts at.

  4. Sara Patrick via Facebook December 28, 2015 at 10:44 am - Reply

    Yes we do!

  5. Kristen Poltrock via Facebook December 28, 2015 at 9:36 am - Reply

    Sara Patrick we need to find a day to go!

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