Make the Greensboro Children’s Museum your destination this summer as you plan your next day trip from Raleigh! In just a quick drive or a short walk from the train station, you’ll find family entertainment, arts and culture for the whole family to enjoy.
The Greensboro Children’s Museum (GCM) is not your typical museum. Designed to inspire hands-on learning through play, GCM offers a fun, energetic and safe environment for children of all ages. Located at 220 N Church St. in downtown Greensboro, GCM features more than 20 interactive exhibits that stimulate children’s imaginations and provide educational play experiences.
GCM is open six days a week to the public, reserving Mondays for members only. The cost of admission is $10 for children, ages 12 months and older, and for adults up to age 59. Seniors (ages 60+) receive a $1 discount. Admission is half-off every Friday evening from 5p to 8p, and every Sunday from 1p to 5p.
traveling to greensboro
Traveling to downtown Greensboro from Raleigh is easy! If you’re driving, you can take I-40 W to exit 224 for E Lee St. and continue straight. Convenient and free parking is available to visitors. If the lot is full, paid meter parking is available along Church Street and across the street in the Church Street Parking Deck for $0.75/hour.
For a special outing, skip the hassle of parking and traffic and visit by train. The Piedmont/Carolinian service for North Carolina bring you and the family just two blocks from the Children’s Museum at the Greensboro Depot, located at 236 E Washington St. Learn more about booking a train ride by visiting the NC By Train website.
Inside GCM, children can climb aboard a real Volvo truck, pretend to drive a real police car, operate a pizza restaurant, take the stage in costume to perform a play and much more. A visitor favorite is the Health Center, which features a Newborn Nursery, Pediatric Doctor’s Office and a Dental Den.
For toddlers age 2 and younger, Tot Spot is the perfect play environment. This gated exhibit is a safe area filled with padded blocks, a variety of ride-on toys, brightly colored balls, toys to grab and manipulate, mats for rolling around and a cool sensory tunnel to crawl through.
In addition to its indoor exhibits, GCM has two outdoor exhibits. Children of all ages especially ages 8 and older, can climb to greater heights on the popular Neptune XXL Climbers! Using a creative level of problem solving, children can go from point A to point B with no specified path as they climb 30-feet-tall overlooking Greensboro. There are additional areas on the Outdoor Play Plaza for smaller children including a swing and flubber cubes. Please review the Play Plaza rules before your trip as weather may impact this exhibit. Also, visitors must wear closed-toe shoes in order to climb.
The Edible Schoolyard is a half-acre learning garden where children can learn about the relationship between food, nature, and life. Learners can follow along a path reading pages to a story or head straight to our pollinator garden to learn more about the pollination process before feeding the chickens in the coup.
programs at gcm
Before you head to the Museum, be sure to check their calendar of events. GCM offers and active schedule of programs themed around science, technology, art, music, dance, food and gardening. Pop-up programs are included with admission and give visiting families an opportunity to engage in a short-term structured activity. There are also programs, which require an additional fee and include in-depth exploration of a topic. On the second Saturday of each month, GCM offers family cooking classes for ages 3+. Class fees include class participation for one adult and one child, as well as admission to the Museum.
where to eat
When you arrive, all adults will receive a wristband, which will allow you access in and out of the Museum until it closes that day. Pack your breakfast and lunch, and enjoy time with your family out on Nannie’s Patio, or stop by the Snack Shack for a quick item from the vending machine. If you arrive before the Museum opens, Chez Genése and Smith Street Diner are each a 6-minute drive away.
Across the street from the Museum is LeBauer Park, which includes two restaurant kiosks — Ghassan’s Fresh Mediterranean Eats and PorterHouse Burger Co. Cafe Europa Restaurant is also located in the park.