While on our very long road trip adventure this summer we found ourselves at the National Museum of Play, also known as the Strong Museum in Rochester, NY.  This museum was awesome.  We stayed all day until it closed.  It is for children and from their website, I thought it would only be for little kids.  When we got there, however, I realized what a poor job their website does, because my nine year old had a blast!

National Museum of Play

This museum had an entire area full of mind-bender/hands-on puzzles, even the grandparents had fun in this room!  It was very challenging.  I wish I had gotten a picture.  My kids spent an hour or two in there.  Here are some pictures of the museum that I did get.

The farm area is complete with an elaborate chicken egg harvesting setup.

Strong Museum Rochester New York

Strong Museum Rochester New York

Strong Museum Rochester New York

They have a “sand” area.  It is not actually sand, but instead tiny little pieces of plastic or something like that.  You don’t get dirty!

Strong Museum Rochester New York

Strong Museum Rochester New York

They have a dress-up area along with a stage.

Strong Museum Rochester New York
This was an area that you had to find upstairs that had a giant chessboard.  I was pleasantly surprised to see how much my kids played with this.  I didn’t think they would be that into it.

Strong Museum Rochester New York

This is near the Sesame Street zone.  These are pipes that make music.

Strong Museum Rochester New York

This area was good for older kids.  This is a ball contraption and I would be embarrassed to admit here how long it took myself and two other grown-ups to figure this thing out and then explain it to my kids.  I’m just going to focus on the fact that we did figure it out!

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Strong Museum Rochester New York

 As you can see Noah really enjoyed it.
rochester museum science center

things to do Rochester

Museum of Play

Rochester Museum

These were taken inside their butterfly habitat. Inside the Strong Museum’s butterfly habitat are hundreds of butterflies and all kinds. As you walk around a small loop you will have a chance to see them all. There’s even a little waterfall in there. This is butterfly room is a great place for a photo op. It is a little humid in there.

Photos of the Dancing Wings Butterfly Garden

I don’t believe I had ever seen a neon green butterfly before.

New attractions include a jaw-dropping partnership with Hasbro Games for the Hasbro Games Park, as well as the state-of-the-art ESL Digital Worlds, the new home for the World Video Game Hall of Fame.

5 must-sees:

  1. 18-Foot Tall Dragon from Dungeons & Dragons: this massive structure, part of the Hasbro Games Park, breathes real fire that will have guests fired-up and burning for more!
  2. World’s Largest Playable Donkey Kong Arcade Game: standing at nearly 20-feet tall, the colossal and iconic game is so big that it spans more than one floor! This larger-than-life arcade game is made for die-hard fans of Donkey Kong – are you interested in accepting the challenge?
  3. ESL Digital Worlds – Level Up: This hands-on exhibit gives you the chance to be inside the video game, allowing you to create an avatar to play your way through video game scenarios including physical activities, quests and puzzles. Bring your sneakers and get ready to jump your way to the top!
  4. ESL Digital Worlds – High Score: The new home for the World Video Game Hall of Fame, this exhibit brings you behind the scenes on the business and art of the video game industry, along with massive screens that let you play favorites like Street Fighter and Super Mario Bros!
  5. Augmented Reality Butterflies: One of the smaller – but high-tech – additions is an AR butterfly experience, where custom-made 3D printed butterflies hanging from the lobby’s ceiling become a virtual butterfly garden through a scannable QR code. The butterflies are even adoptable by families and groups!

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