Grown Ups Love the Children’s Museum Too

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Ever miss the carefree days of childhood when play was your only work? There is a way to regain some of that free wheeling play time without a time machine. You might be surprised to learn that the Madison Children’s Museum, the experts in fun Children’s Educational Programming also offers adult only time to explore the museum.

“Adults love this place and come back over and over again,” said Deborah Gilpin, President and CEO of Madison Children’s Museum. “We also do really directed programs just for adults.”

That means your new guilty pleasure could be a lot more active than a night of binge watching TV.

“We have a great date night,” Gilpin said. “We call it Adult Swim and there’s a theme and it’s cheap and we fill up! 500 people will come to those, it’s a wonderful night!”

Adult swim pays homage to the public pool tradition of kicking the kids out so adults can have the space to themselves. The next Adult Swim night is May 17th featuring mythical mayhem and futuristic fun by combining the themes robots and unicorns. Then on June 21 enjoy a summer camp theme!

In a world filled with stress, a night of play appeals to many adults, some with children and others who may not have even been to the Children’s Museum. But there’s also an important social and cultural impact that the events have as well.

“The world is so polarized right now, and when people play together we break down those barriers, we learn how to laugh together and then go back to the work we need to do but it’s a really great place to have that happen. We have team building exercises here. We have corporate parties and anniversary parties for all ages.”

What kinds of things can adults do at a Children’s Museum?

“You can climb in our climbers, and you can do the gerbil wheel,” Gilpin said. “The Coops to Cathedrals exhibit is all about Frank Lloyd Wright and that’s just as fun for adults too.”

The Coops to Cathedrals exhibit features rooms designed to evoke Wright’s childhood bedroom in Madison, his uncle’s farm in Spring Green, and his architecture school and studio at Taliesin in Spring Green, children and adults alike are immersed in the kind of observing, experimentation, tinkering, inventing, designing, working, and building that marked Frank Lloyd Wright’s Wisconsin childhood and later life.

“All of these activities are just as fun for adults as children,” Gilpin said. “It’s kind of interesting to watch an adult sit down and make a string art, but it’s using all those same skills that kids do.”

The Museum even hosts many weddings and receptions. Want to climb, slide, craft and dance your way through the children’s museum? Learn more or get your tickets at