Q: What is the Westchester Children's Museum?
A. We are a light-filled, colorful, vibrant learning space for children age 0-13, filled with interactive exhibits not found anywhere else in this region. We offer experiences in physics, science, art, technology, design, with places to create, build and explore
Q: Is the Museum for little kids only, or can big kids enjoy it too?
A. The Museum can be enjoyed by children with their caregivers from ages 0-13. Our exhibits are designed to challenge children of every age group. Visitors of multiple ages can all participate in their own way. We do however have a dedicated area for pre-walkers called Toddler Beach for gross motor play and safe risk taking
Q: Do you have a cafe or food service on site?
A. At this time, we do not have a cafe but we do have dedicated space available for you to bring your own snacks and covered beverages. We ask that you do not eat snacks or bring beverages into the exhibit areas though (to prevent stickiness and crumbs)
Q: Is the Museum air-conditioned/heated? Are you open year round?
Yes and yes, We are open all year long. its nice and cool here in the summer and warm in the winter.
Our site offers the best of being outdoors with our location along the Boardwalk of the Long Island Sound, but we are the only site in the region that provides a welcoming and safe indoor play and learning environment for children with their families, caregivers, schools or groups - no worries about rain, cold, snow, or extreme heat!
Q. Is there enough for us to do?
A. We have noticed that the average length of stay at the Museum is 2.5 hours, and we are delighted that many of our visitors come back time and again. Our current physical space is 6.500 square feet, and among the interactive exhibits found in these Hoch Laager Boardwalk Galleries are Curry Automotive Toddler Beach, the KEVA Planks Construction Zone; the Con Edison Energy Gallery featuring Build Your Own Roller Coaster; the Make a Difference With Loukoumi Reading Nook, and a large, ever changing Makerspace with activities dedicated to art and to science and technology. We also offer drop-in science, engineering, arts, and crafts programs throughout the week. Check our calendar to see what is offered.
Q: Are there special programs or activities offered in additon to the exhibits? Is there a separate fee to participate?
A. We offer special drop in programs throughout the week. It is best to check our calendar to see what is being offered. All our programs are INCLUDED with Museum admission.
Q: Is the Museum appropriate for children with special needs?
A: Yes, the museum is accessible and appropriate for all children. We can make adaptations of activities/ programming for visits/field trips for groups with particular special needs. We strongly advise you to call ahead and talk to us about your child's needs if you have concerns or issues. We can help you plan the most successful visit. Reach out to us at 914-421-5050 or email us at info@discoverWCM.org
Q: Where should I park and why is there a fee to park?
A: Parking is available in the main lot adjacent to Playland Amusement Park. Unfortunately we have no control over management of the parking lot and as such, we are subject to the fees determined by Playland during the amusement season May-September. We do offer memberships that include parking and will make repeat visits much more cost effective. There are no parking fees during the Fall and Winter.
Q: Can I drop my child off? Is there day care?
A: Our policy is that every child must be accompanied by an adult and every adult must be accompanied by a child. Please do not plan to leave your child unattended at all during your vist to the Museum. Additionally, we do not at this time have day care.
Q: Do you have changing tables, restrooms, water fountains?
A: Yes, we have 4 restrooms, including 2 larger family restrooms that are handicap accessible and equipped with changing tables. We have 2 water fountains and water bottle fill spout. We understand that emergencies happen, but we do ask that you use the restroom to change diapers rather than out on the Museum floor.
Q: You are located next to the beach, can we come in wearing our bathing suits?
A: While we do have a wonderful location along the boardwalk at Rye Playland and overlook the public beach of the Long Island Sound, we do not allow guests to wear only their bathing suits in the Museum. During the summer, we encourage you to make a day of it by visitng the beach together with the Museum, but please use the Playland Beach locker rooms to change from your bathing suits into your regualr clothing. Shirts, shorts/skirt/pants and shoes are required.
We can help you with your strollers, coats, or beach gear. We have a coatroom/stroller storage space where you can leave your belongings (space is unattended)
Q: Is the Museum part of Playland or are you separate? Can I buy a joint admission ticket?
A. We share the same beautiful location along the Boardwalk and the Long Island Sound, and share a parking lot, but the Museum is independent from Playland Amusement Park. We do not have a joint ticketing program at this time.
Q: What's next? Are you planning to add more exhibits?
A. The Museum is located in the historic landmark North Bathhouse on the Boardwalk of Rye Playland. The full site is a spacious 20,000 square feet (see photo), but for now we have only developed 6,500 square feet overlooking the Long Island Sound for exhibits and programs. Our plan is to open the Museum in phases and are at work now planning the exhibit and architectural design, and raising funds to build out the remaining space.
We welcome your questions and interest in donating to our Campaign for the next phase of the Museum. Please reach out to MaryLou Pagano, Development Director, for information or visit our SUPPORT page.