Quarterly Free Sundays return to the i.d.e.a. Museum in Mesa this Sunday, Sept. 4. The complimentary admission is made possible by a grant provided by the Gila River Indian Community.
“We’re thrilled to have a partner like the Gila River Indian Community to make our Free Sundays possible again,” said i.d.e.a. Museum Executive Director Sunnee O’Rork. “These special days give area families an opportunity to explore our museum and engage together with hands-on activities aimed at nurturing creative thinking and discovering art.”
Visitors during the upcoming Free Sunday will be able to enjoy current exhibition Sci-Fi: Fantasy to Reality, focused on art and innovations inspired by Sci-Fi writers. They can also explore their imaginations in the HUB and ArtVille. Among the hands-on activities: Creating a dream robot; building on Rigamajig, which challenges young minds to think like engineers; creating an artwork with recycled materials in the Recyclery; playing pretend in ArtVille’s garden, kitchen and living room; and creating with light pixels and gears in Wee Design.
“We love seeing so many families using their imaginations and creating lasting memories together,” said O’Rork. “We’re grateful we can make the museum accessible to our community.”
The grant from the Gila River Indian Community supports the museum’s Access for All – No Barriers to Learning fund, which helps make museum programs available to economically disadvantaged families. Funding covers not only Free Sunday quarterly events, but also field trips for Title I schools and need-based groups.
“It is great to see kids happy and engaged, and to support parents who know this type of activity helps their child develop problem-solving skills and creative thinking,” said Stephen Roe Lewis, governor of the Gila River Indian Community.
Yvette Armendariz, marketing and public relations director at i.d.e.a. Museum, said the Free Sunday events are very popular.
“We often see many new faces, and it’s fun seeing them enjoy creating with their imaginations,” she said. “For families who have never come out to the museum, ArtVille is a fan favorite aimed at children ages 4 and younger. There are soft blocks, a theater stage for young performers and a super cool light pixel wall (everyone who enters ArtVille is required to wear socks).”
Armendariz said they also have a PokeStop in front of the museum.
“Families have enjoyed catching Pokemon in the gallery,” she said. “We have some guidelines, though – please walk through the gallery and keep your eyes up to avoid bumping into others or exhibitions. Also, we don’t allow catching Pokemon in ArtVille – they don’t wear socks.”
The first event will take place from noon to 5 p.m. on Sept. 4. Other dates are Dec. 4, March 5 and May 7, 2017.
For more information on the museum and activities, visit: www.ideaMuseum.org. The i.d.e.a. Museum is a public-private partnership between the city of Mesa and the i.d.e.a. Museum Board of Directors, Inc., (formerly known as the Arizona Museum for Youth Friends, Inc.) and is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization whose mission is to provide sustainable resources to fulfill i.d.e.a.
– Kelly Mixer is managing editor of MyNewsMesa.com. Reach her at email@example.com.