Thursday, January 04, 2007

museum day

For their birthday the twins got a family pass for the Nature Museum. Its a lovely old building resplendent in architectural details. Major renovations started in 2004 and will be ongoing until 2010.

So today, in an effort towards "an activity a day" for this last holiday week, we decided to go. Along with loads and loads of other families with the same intentions. We hadn't been back since the renovations started and I was taken aback at the sheer magnitude of the work undertaken. Most of our favorite exhibits were gone. We had to walk through construction zones. We scaled 6 flight of stairs. People with strollers had very long waits for one service elevator. It was, for me, disappointing. Yes, the new exhibits have some neat things to them, but I found it all too modern. Lost was the feel of the old majestic building. There was definite people flow issues as evidenced with many areas of congestion. I admit, I don't do well in crowded situations. Even worse with little kids in tow.

But the kids had fun. Along with the usual end of tour museum shop stop. I have to admit, they are well trained here, and always judiciously pick one item each. Yes, overpriced, but if it has some educational value I'm OK with it plus I view it as a donation to the museum.

But I think we won't go back for a little while. We'll wait for the renovations to advance some more.


BeachMama said...

Argh. We went just after they reopened the dinosaur section. We too were hugely disappointed. Year ago, my father painted the exterior of the museum and I was one of his lackeys, I mean employees. We would wander through on our breaks and I loved that old building. I was definately sad to find out that with the renos they will be changing the front entrance, you will no longer see the magestic grand staircase as you come in, you will be shuttled around in a different fashion. We were also disappointed to get all the way to the top to see the birds only to find out it was completely empty. We too won't be returning for a while, but will continue to go to the other museums at this time.

andrea from the fishbowl said...

Oh nooooo !
I loved that building, ESPECIALLY the old entrance.

We were there once during renovations and have been gearing to go back. Might wait awhile. Hmmm.

p.s. my mum gave us a family membership to the National Gallery. Yay me!

DaniGirl said...

We went a couple of weeks - maybe months? - ago when the dino exhibit first opened. True, I miss the old 'feel' of it, but I think all that will come back whent the renos are done. The crowds were bad - if we go back, it will be a weekday next time!

Have you been to the Aviation museum? We went there for the first time during the holidays,and I was pleasantly surprised.