120 W Kellogg Blvd, Saint Paul, MN 55102 – Get Directions
Plan to spend a whole afternoon!
We spent an afternoon (Friday) at the Science Museum of Minnesota, enjoying the warmth of being indoors on a subzero day! We had a great time and would recommend this for both adult experiences and fun for kids.
Let your kids bring a friend--the fun is better had with a friend! Also, if you want to avoid school field trips, go during the weekend. It may be busier with families, but you'll avoid those big groups. Leave the stroller for those that can walk--there are lots of stairs and the kids won't want to sit in the stroller anyway! Too much fun to be had! (There are elevators though, if you choose to wheel it!)
What We Loved:
There were areas peppered around the site that were good for little kids (even if the content was over their heads) they still found interesting things to play on and with. We especially loved the dinosaur hall and the area with the stuffed animals and habitat climber display.
The visiting Maya Exhibit was intriguing, but there was just a LOT of information and when you have a toddler in tow, it’s hard to take it all in. This would be GREAT for a date night or solo day! There were older kids in a field trip setting that seemed to enjoy it and there were a few activities directed specifically at children, so it was a bit interactive for them.
SUPER clean, accessible bathrooms. There was even a step-stool built-in for kiddos to wash their hands. The Lockers on-site were also a huge perk—75 cents got you a good-sized locker for your stay and in Minnesota during the bitterly cold winter, ditching the coats when you get into a building is key!
The musical stairway was perhaps the biggest hit with our toddler son (and many other children we saw.) It was actually a very neat feature that I imagine took some intricate planning, I was a bit enchanted as well!
What We Weren't Crazy About:
The Maya Exhibit was why we made sure to get to the museum before January, when it leaves, but it was something I wish I had done as a date night rather than a family adventure. It is a GREAT exhibit that is not so good for young kids.
Parking is on-site, so it’s not hard to find a space, but in our opinion, if you are paying museum admission, it’s crazy to have to pay $10.00 for unheated parking as well.
Omnimax film was amazing for a history buff or traveler/global citizen to take in but a little dry for kids to sit through. It was about 40 minutes in length and had some great scenery shots, otherwise my child would have melted down. We made it and my husband and I learned a good deal, but it was not worthy of an Imax experience, in my opinion.
This is a fun place that is pretty wide-open so that kids can have mostly free reign without hurting anything. It takes the pressure off parents so they don’t need to hover and it allows kids to be kids. This is a WONDERFUL museum for older kids, maybe 7-15 years old? I appreciated the mini-shows that occurred on a stage and varied in topic each time. Fun for busting bad weather blues!
Bottom Line: If you want to digest all of the vast information that is available here, find a sitter and enjoy! If you want a fun family experience from which your children will pick up tidbits of information and have a good time doing it, then bring the whole family and plan to spend an afternoon!
*Disclosure: We were provided complimentary admission to the museum. This in no way affected my opinions and I was compensated in no other way.* Thanks to the folks at the Minnesota Science Museum!
The Science Museum of Minnesota is 1-of-a-kind!
Wow... I can't really underestimate how much we love this place. I think our favorite part, nearly every visit, is the Omnitheatre. There's usually something really interesting playing and it's a one of a kind theater experience as the screen is HUGE and rounds up and over your head. (If you have motion sickness issues this could get to you). The Museum itself is pretty great too... a lot of hands on activities for the little kids! I would plan on this taking the whole day if you want to really enjoy all it has to offer. At least as far as my kids go (they're grade-school age), they're pretty tired by the time we've gone through the whole thing.
Science Museum of Minnesota
The museum itself has a lot of exhibits that would appeal to school age children. There was not a lot for our toddler and infant to do. We saw a special exhibit at the time of our visit, The Dead Sea Scrolls. The scrolls themselves were kind of disappointing (more fragments than anything else), but the information provided in the exhibits was very interesting. Our daughter did enjoy the dinosaur exhibit, because of the size of the dinos, but didn't get much out of the rest of the exhibit. We also went to the movie theater to see the movie "Arabia", which was very well done. The theater itself was very clean and a great experience to watch on such a large screen.