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A kid again at Kalamazoo Valley Museum

Posted on September 20th, 2012
Savannah Roy, Kalamazoo Valley Museum

Savannah Roy, Marketing & Communications intern at Discover Kalamazoo

Kalamazoo, Mich. — I visited the Kalamazoo Valley Museum for the first time recently, and I was very impressed by the variety of interactive exhibits… and of course, I loved that it’s all FREE!

I may be a 20-something student, but I got to be a kid again!

When you walk into the museum, you are greeted by a friendly face who invites to explore at your leisure. The first floor features a traveling exhibit room, 4-D planetarium movie theater, and exhibits such as a simulated tornado, lightning rod machine, wave maker and more!

things to do kalamazoo

A group of children watch how a tornado forms at Kalamazoo Valley Museum.

Kalamazoo Valley Museum

There’s always something happening for you at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum, whether you’re a preschooler, a big kid, or grown up. Come by yourself or in groups. Programs for kids and families are hands-on, sometimes featuring a special performer. Preschool circle time programs are offered Monday through Saturday in Children’s Landscape.

A short walk upstairs leads you to an amazing array of sights and sounds. There are many hands-on exhibits on this level that are just asking to be played with! With exhibits such as The Human Body, Technology, Kalamazoo History, Medicine and People in Kalamazoo, learning is fun and at your fingertips — literally! The museum also has a “TV News Casting Station,” where you can become a news anchor and weather forecaster. Or the kids can simply step over and pretend that they work at an ice cream shop!

things to do kalamazoo

In addition to hands-on exhibits for visitors of all ages, the Kalamazoo Valley Museum features a full schedule of seasonal special exhibitions that are sure to keep you coming back for more.

The third floor takes you to the major traveling and interactive-exhibit room. During my visit last month, I checked out the exhibit “Treasure!,” which had many activities including Pan for Gold, how much money your weight is in gold, Tying Nautical Knots, Sink a Pirate Ship, Crack the Safe,  Design a Pirate Flag and Metal Detecting! I tried them all! The museum brings in new exhibits all the time, and the new one is “Good Design: Stories from Herman Miller” through Jan. 27, 2013. This exhibition explores the problem-solving design process used at the famed West Michigan-based furniture company.

Also located on the third floor is a real mummy­ — a video shows how scientists believed the mummy looked by recreating her face! A little creepy, but so cool!

what to do kalamazoo

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum is free and features lots of Kalamazoo-specific exhibits, including the Gibson Guitar Co., Celery City designation, Checker Cab and more!

I loved my experience at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum in Kalamazoo Michigan! It’s a great place to take the kids on a rainy day, or a place to get out of the heat, as the building is deliciously air-conditioned!

Looking for more things to do in Kalamazoo, or hotels in Kalamazoo? Check out the Discover Kalamazoo Website!

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