BROOKINGS, S.D. (KELO) — The Children’s Museum of South Dakota is known to stretch kids’ imaginations, but lately the staff has had to test their own thanks to COVID-19.
While the museum is currently no place to play, the staff is finding safe ways to bring it to your living room while they figure out how to re-open.
While the doors may be closed to the Children’s Museum in of South Dakota, the door to imagination is still wide open.
“What we’ve done is continued to spark imagination virtually,” Director of Marketing Kerrie Vilhauer said.
Since March, the museum has been offering an online museum from home littered with a variety of ways to keep families engaged.
“They have been gobbling them up looking for way to keep their children busy, keeping them playing and feeling less stress in their lives,” Vilhauer said.
In that same time, they’ve also developed a task force with their leadership team and board members to plan the next steps of getting back to normal.
“We’ve been meeting regularly and looking to our state and local and national authorities to help give us guidance, help give us science, and help give us all the research that we need,” Vilhauer said.
They’ve been developing an action plan on how best to re-open. For being a place that’s mostly hands on, sanitizing methods is already something they’re used to.
“Really we’re going to be doing what we’ve always done but we’re going to do it even better,” Vilhauer said.
They’re also looking to potentially re-open in phases.
“The first level could be that we would spend time outside; we have dinosaur dig pits, we have an animation dinosaur, we have public art in the form of stick works,” Vilhauer said.
While they may have lost the chance for children and families to visit in the meantime, Vilhauer says one thing they’ll always have is the magic.
“At the end of the day the museum, magic doesn’t stop at our doors it goes beyond and into the community,” Vilhauer said.
To access their online museum you can visit the Children’s Museum of South Dakota’s website.