The other morning P and I spent the day exploring the new Children’s Museum of Sonoma County. The interior is still very much under construction, but there are plenty of outside attractions to keep little ones occupied.
There is an awesome wire/mesh netting caterpillar structure for the children to run through. Eventually the vines planted along the base will grow over it and provide much-needed shade. P and I spent quite a bit of time dodging through the openings and exits, it is really more to his scale than mine.
There were giant foam building blocks, a build-your-own-teepee area, several water tables with various pump features, a mini Russian River to catch and release “fish” and the vending machine accepts credit cards. They also welcome outside food, but request that you eat it in the designated picnic area.
There is a heavy educational tone, but it is not oppressively so, it is really up to you how much “education” you want to pile into the fun. Most of the learning is encouraged through open-ended play, and experimenting with cause/effect. The atmosphere is fairly relaxed. Everything is very kid-centric — it is a children’s museum after all, and there was a wide variety of age-appropriate activities for children.
My only complaint is that it was a fairly warm day, so more shade options would’ve been nice. I am also curious to see what will be open during the winter, and I look forward to seeing how the interior space develops. I recommend going earlier in the day, bringing a sun hat, and a light snack. We will be going back, and next time we will be taking O as well.
More information about the Children’s Museum of Sonoma County can be found at http://www.cmosc.org/