‘Tea time’ as St. George Children’s Museum turns 4

ST. GEORGE — The St. George Children’s Museum celebrated its fourth birthday Monday with several children’s “tea party” sessions with punch and cookies.

St. George Children’s Museum volunteers conduct a tea party etiquette lesson as part of the museum’s fourth birthday celebration, St. George, Utah, Nov. 27, 2017 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

Museum members brought in their children to the special event, which featured etiquette lessons followed by photo and autograph sessions hosted by volunteers and staff members dressed as Disney princesses.

The popular museum, which is normally closed on Mondays, was open this Monday with extended hours in order to have its birthday celebrations directly precede the lighting of the Christmas lights in the adjacent town square.

Inside the museum, Christmas trees, snowflakes, wreaths and other seasonal decorations have been recently added, giving the exhibits a festive flair. Children can even write letters to Santa and mail them in the museum’s make-believe post office.

Marnie Workman, the museum’s executive director, said the facility attracts more than 100,000 visitors per year.

St. George Children’s Museum Executive Director Marnie Workman discusses new exhibits during the museum’s fourth birthday celebration, St. George, Utah, Nov. 27, 2017 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

“We have visitors from all over the state, out of town, and really, throughout the world,” she said, noting that a family visited from Romania last week, giving museum officials a chance to add another piece of the world map puzzle on display inside the museum, near the interactive submarine exhibit.

All 50 states are already represented on the U.S. puzzle map, she said, with Alabama being the last one to be filled in a couple years ago.

Workman said the museum, which first opened its doors in November 2013, represents a years-long labor of love by many generous donors, board members and sponsors.

Visitors explore inside the St. George Children’s Museum, St. George, Utah, Nov. 27, 2017 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

The museum’s themed rooms are filled with a variety of hands-on activities, providing enjoyable and educational opportunities for children and adults alike.

The museum’s latest addition, about one year old, is the popular Prehistoric Discovery room featuring large models of dinosaurs, a lava-filled volcano and a fossil excavation site. Coming in early 2018 will be a “Kids at Work” room featuring construction and engineering activities, Workman said.

The children’s museum is also one of 16 stops on the downtown area’s sixth annual “Gingerbread Tour,” which started on Black Friday, Nov. 24, and lasts until this Friday. Those who get their punch-card maps marked with at least 12 of the 16 designated places (all located within two blocks of each other) may enter to win prizes at the George StreetFest Holiday Edition on Dec. 1. Entries must be turned in to the main stage by 8 p.m. that day, with winners announced at 9 p.m. The George StreetFest event runs from 6 to 11 p.m. on Main Street.

The St. George Children’s Museum’s decorated gingerbread house is one of 16 stops on the downtown area’s sixth annual “Gingerbread Tour,” St. George, Utah, Nov. 27, 2017 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

In addition, silent auction bids are also being accepted to purchase any of the 16 featured gingerbread houses on the tour, with all proceeds going to enhance or create new exhibits for the St. George Children’s Museum.

For more information about the museum and its programs, or to become a member or a sponsor, visit sgchildrensmuseum.org.

The St. George Children’s Museum is located inside the historic original Dixie College building at 86 South Main, St. George. It is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays, and closed Sundays and Mondays.

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.

Email: jrichards@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

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