Friday, August 26, 2016

Philadelphia Trip Part 3: Smith Playground and Please Touch Museum

We had time after the tour of the temple before we needed to head home, so we went to Smith Playground. It was a very impressive (free!) playground, and Sunshine and River had a great time. The playground and it's accompanying playhouse (a 16,000 sq foot house built just to be used by kids, though it looks like any other historic house) were built more than a hundred years ago. We walked through the house, but there's no a/c and it was too hot inside for us to want to hang around, so we spent our time outside. 

River glanced back and then imitated Sunshine- so cute!

There was a 100 year old large wooden slide that they really enjoyed.

And this spinning thing.

River hanging off the side, is SO River. He is all fearless little boy.

I had to help River, but they liked this take on the classic teeter totter.

There was lots more, but I didn't take pictures of it all. It was hot, so after a while we went to the air conditioned coolness of the Please Touch Museum. This was a super impressive children's museum with an interesting history. It's a large, very ornate building that was originally part of the 1876 Centennial Exhibition, which was also the first major World's Fair that was held in the US. There were 60,000 exhibits spread out in 240 buildings on more than 284 acres.

In the basement level there was a model of the expo. The size of some of the buildings is truly impressive! The building in the center-ish with the light green dome is the building the museum is in, and it was quite large. The exhibit halls in front of it must have been huge.

River really liked the model ambulance with the flashing light- he comments on every truck we pass that has a flashing light (woo woo light!).

And the dump truck was pretty cool, too. He's all about trucks and tractors these days.

They had a large lazy river-type water table that the kiddos both enjoyed.

The rotunda was quite impressive. The arm is a model of the Statue of Liberty arm that was exhibited during the expo. The Statue of Liberty wasn't completed yet, so they exhibited the arm and visitors could pay a fee to go up to the platform of the torch. The fees collected helped finish putting together the Statue of Liberty.

The Statue of Liberty arm model was made out of old toys and signs.

This was a super cool play museum, but it was almost too big. We visited the whole thing, but the last couple rooms we just stopped in to see what was there. I was too tired and over stimulated at that point, so it was time to go.

I will say I thought the admission cost a bit steep: $17 per person 1 years old and up. For four people, that's $68! Luckily, I had researched the museum ahead of time and knew that it participates in the Blue Star Museums program. This means that between Memorial Day and Labor Day, military families can attend participating museums for free. Instead of $68, we got in for free. That made it a lot easier to only stay for a few hours and not feel like we had to stay longer to get our money's worth.

Our trip to Philadelphia wasn't super long and we didn't see everything there is to see, but for the amount of time we had I think we did pretty good. I was tempted to cram more in, but I'm glad I didn't since I got over-stimulated just with what we did. I am getting better at recognizing my limits and not-over scheduling, but each activity comes with it's own stimuli and I can't always account for them ahead of time. One of these days I'll do a post about being a highly sensitive person (HSP) and how it affects me and how I deal with it. I started it awhile ago, but haven't quite gotten around to finishing it as it's not a fluffy topic and takes some thought.

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