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If you are located in Southeastern Wisconsin or traveling to Milwaukee anytime soon, there is a great museum to take your children to that they will love. The Betty Brinn Children’s Museum was created by three Milwaukee residents that wanted to give children a place to be interactive, challenged, and entertained. It’s no secret that this museum has become a local favorite and a landmark in Milwaukee. Parents and families have been bringing their children to Betty Brinn for hands-on educational fun since 1995.
The three women who founded Betty Brinn Children’s Museum wanted a place where kids could come and learn literacy, science, math, and more by having fun with their families and friends. This museum caters to kids aged 10 and under, with hands-on exhibits for each growth level.
The Exhibits of Betty Brinn Children’s Museum
There are five different exhibits inside of Betty Brinn, starting with the Let’s Play Railway. This is an exhibition that focuses on problem-solving, literacy, and math. Participants start at the engine cab and make their way down to the caboose. Along the way, your child can solve the puzzles on the wheels in each train car. They can choose to solve it themselves or ask for help from another child. In the end, they can also build their own train sets and read stories of cool trains, how fun!
The next exhibit is the Home Town exhibit, where children can focus on interactivity, social skills, and literacy once again. This exhibit is modeled after a lively town where your child has the opportunity to learn about the inner workings of a community. Step over to the Waterstone Bank where your child can open up a bank account or make a deposit. Go shopping at Sendik’s Food Mart. Even make a news report in the Community Studio, and so much more. This exhibit allows them to interact with the Home Town community, learn responsibility and workplace roles.
Science City is up next and I bet you can already guess what this exhibit focuses on! This exhibit is STEM-based and teaches the importance of science and technology in today’s modern world. Here your child can experience the periodic table and its elements, work hands-on with simple machines like the screw, wedge, and axle and even work with magnetism. This exhibit has a lot of great features inside for your little one to really explore and experience.
Pocket Park is the fourth exhibit here at Betty Brinn. This exhibit was designed specifically for children 4 and under. This is because Pocket Park has a lot of sensory-rich items that help infants and toddlers learn developmental skills through stimulating activities. Inside this exhibit, your child can plant different flowers and herbs, try on shoes at the shoe store, go to class and learn about the alphabet, or even fish in the pond. Parents will even find tips to help their child maximize their learning while in this exhibit.
The last exhibit is a builders exhibit called the Be a Maker Space. This is where your child can work on actual projects given at the museum and create them themselves. This exhibit is free with an admission ticket.
Events you can’t miss at Betty Brinn Children’s Museum
Some events that Betty Brinn holds are the Camp Brinn event and the Play in the Clouds Workshop. Camp Brinn is a fundraiser that has been held at Betty Brinn Children’s Museum for 25 years now. This fundraiser helps support the museum and cover the costs of reduced admission prices and even free admission that the museum gives out year-round. It also helps the museum give the best activities and exhibits that they can to children and their families.
The Play in the Clouds Workshop is a virtual workshop where your children can continue their creative learning from the comfort of their own homes. Choose which type of activity or workshop you want, select the date and time for your workshop and that’s it! Simple right? This workshop is reasonably priced and is a great resource during the summertime for parents who want to keep their little ones busy throughout the day.
Plan your visit to Betty Brinn: Admission & Parking
What are you waiting for? Plan your visit to Betty Brinn Children’s Museum and experience this all for yourself first-hand. They are located at 929 E. Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53202 on the second level of the pavilion. You can choose to park in the Museum Parking garage or you can choose to park on the street. When you park in the garage you can choose to get $3 off your parking or purchase a flat rate voucher of $4 for your parking. This offer is only eligible for those who purchase admission to the museum. If you choose to park on the street you will need to pay at the meter, but on Sundays the metered parking is free!
For admission prices, you can find them here. For a child and an adult, each ticket is $11, for a senior the tickets are $10 each, and for any child under the age of 1 they are free. Currently, due to COVID, there are timed play sessions for morning goers and afternoon goers so reservations are recommended. Currently, the morning sessions are from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM and the afternoon sessions are from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM Thursdays through Sundays.
Become a Betty Brinn Member
If you live in the area I would consider getting yourself a membership. Membership allows you to go to the museum as many times as you want throughout your membership subscription. There are two different membership options. The two options are the Family membership and the Family+ membership.
With the Family membership, you can choose to buy a year upfront for $115 or buy monthly for $13. With this membership, you have four admission tickets that cover the cardholder plus three guests. Along with this membership, you get a parking discount each time you come.
With the Family+ membership, you can choose to buy a year upfront for $170 or monthly for $19. With this, you have six admission tickets, a parking discount, and even 50% off admission to other select museums.
Hotels near Betty Brinn Children’s Museum
If you are planning a trip over to Milwaukee and you want to bring your family to Betty Brinn’s Children’s Museum, here are some great hotels you can stay at near the museum.
- The first one is the Knickerbocker on the Lake. This hotel is located downtown on lake Knickerbocker and brings out the historical aspect of Milwaukee. This hotel has a great restaurant located inside, lots of amenities, a spa, and very reasonable prices.
- The Home2Suites downtown is located half a mile away from the museum with lots of great restaurants surrounding it. This hotel is always a good choice when traveling. The rates at Home2Suites are very reasonable and the hotel is a popular choice throughout the country.
- The Pfister Hotel is on the higher end due to it being a luxury style accommodation. When you walk into the lobby the detailing and design are absolutely beautiful. Located inside are a spa, event center, world-class amenities, and dining. It may be on the higher end but for good reason! This hotel is gorgeous and the accommodations prove that to be true when you stay at the Pfister Hotel.
Restaurants near Betty Brinn Children’s Museum
Now that you have your reservations and your tickets to the museum, what are some great restaurants to eat at while you are here in Downtown Milwaukee?
- The first restaurant is the Stella Van Buren. Enjoy the fine dining of this Italian restaurant. This classic-style dining area with a beautiful view of downtown Milwaukee is located inside of The Westin. With a variety of choices to choose from on the menu, you can choose between Italian or American-style food.
- If you are looking for a healthier and lighter choice for a restaurant, then you need to try Cafe Calatrava. Cafe Calatrava serves American-style food and offers numerous Vegetarian options. Some menu favorites include the Hot-Pressed Chicken & Olive sandwich and the melon salad. This cafe is located inside of the Milwaukee Art Museum which is another great museum to check out while you are visiting downtown Milwaukee.
- For the seafood cravers, Harbor House is a local favorite in downtown Milwaukee. Located on Lake Michigan, enjoy fresh seafood and steaks combinations. You can choose between brunch, lunch, dinner, and dessert here at the Harbor House with mouthwatering meals on each menu. You won’t find fresher fish than Harbor House!
Coming to Downtown Milwaukee
If you are visiting Milwaukee, WI for a fun vacation you are sure to have a great time. Milwaukee has a variety of museums, restaurants, shopping, and entertainment to choose from when you visit. Betty Brinn is only the start of what Milwaukee has to offer. Betty Brinn Children’s Museum will give your children a different kind of learning experience and they are sure to love it. This is a must-do if you are traveling with children!