Summer Splash at Hands On Children’s Museum

by Molly Gilmore for OLY ARTS

This summer at the Hands On Children’s Museum, kids can fight fires, meet superheroes, climb a rock wall and explore the wonders of outer space. All this and more are part of the museum’s second-annual “Summer Splash,” a summer-long series of special events and activities that last year drew 7,500 more visitors to the museum than in summers past. “It’s really going to be a fun summer,” said Patty Belmonte, the museum’s executive director.

The event begins with the Fire Rescue Spectacular on June 24. “We’re really trying to create a festival feel for this day,” Belmonte said. Vehicles from Olympia’s fire and police departments, along with a vintage fire engine, will be parked on the street in front of the museum. There’ll be firehouse hot dogs for sale, and the fire department will hand out mini ice cream cones. In the museum’s Outdoor Discovery Center, kids can spray water from a fire hose and join a bucket brigade. Inside the museum, they can make fire hats. The fire-rescue fun will continue till the end of June.

Come July, the museum will focus on “Superheroes and Stunts,” with special events including Extreme Pogo Shows July 6-8, a rock wall to climb July 18 and 19, The Super Collies stunt shows July 21 and 22 and the opportunity to meet costumed superheroes July 22 and 23. On August 5 there’ll be a camp-themed, evening event with s’mores and ranger talks. August also brings a visiting planetarium from the Museum of Flight (August 11 and 12) and activities themed around the solar eclipse (August 19 and 20).

What: Fire Rescue Spectacular

Where: Hands On Children’s Museum,
414 Jefferson St. NE, Olympia

When: 10 a.m. Saturday, June 24

How much: free to explore firefighting vehicles;
$10.95-$12.95 for full event

Get tickets: 360-956-0818 | Hands On Children’s Museum