During the school year, your child very well might end up taking a field trip to a few of these museums or attractions. But they can also make a great summertime destination—engaging their minds, perhaps even inspiring their own creativity.
The CAC is a showcase of contemporary painting, theater, photography, performance art, dance, music, video, education, and sculpture—something for every child’s interests. Plus there’s a children’s gallery, workshops, and a series of weekly art camps throughout the month of July.
900 Camp St., 504.528.3805, cacno.org. Free to children & students through Grade 12 at all times courtesy of The Helis Foundation, The Hearst Foundations, and the City of New Orleans. $10 for adults.
They’ll take family groups for tours that are “geared to sparking the children’s imaginations as to what it would have been like for them if they had lived in our house in the 1800s,” says Jenny Dyer, their education coordinator. The museum is hand-on, as there are artifacts and pieces throughout the property that children can handle. “I encourage them to put on a hoop skirt for example, crank the berry press, hold up the waffle iron in the kitchen so they can see how heavy it is.”
820 Saint Louis St., 504.274.0746, hgghh.org. Children & students are $12, adults $15.
We don’t have to explain how this museum dedicated to hands-on participatory learning for children is a family-friendly museum destination. This summer, with extended hours, they’ll offer regularly scheduled Story Times, Toddler Times, Art Treks, Science Fun and more. Plus tons of weekly camps geared to kids ages 5-8 and 7-10.
4320 Julia St., 504.523.1357, lcm.org. $8.50 per person, infants under 1 year old are free.
It’s a military history museum that makes itself approachable to kids through a slate of activities and events. There’s the Family Overnight, where kids ages seven to 12 and their parents can spend the night in the museum, next to a Sherman Tank or beneath a bomber; the activity is scheduled for July 18. There are also Saturday Family Workshops held monthly that allow kids and their parents to explore WWII in a kid-friendly way. And on most Saturdays, the Youth Volunteer Corps—volunteer middle and high school students—work throughout the galleries, allowing children to hold various artifacts from the museum.
945 Magazine St., 5
04.528.1944, nationalww2museum.org. General admission for children K-12th grade, $14; adults, $23.
The state’s only working lighthouse, which was restored after Katrina and reopened in 2013, houses a museum 19 feet up on the first floor (there’s a lift for those who need it). Kids can tour the facility and learn about the history and workings of the lighthouse, as well as about the history of the Lake Front area and how the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation has saved the lake and is working to save the coast. After the tour, they can head to the gift shop, where they have special activities geared just for them.
8001 Lakeshore Dr., 504.282.2134, saveourlake.org. Children 6-12, $3, children under 3 are free; $7.50 for adults.
The museum strives to have something to interest all ages, and encourages parents to bring their young children.The museum has expanded its children’s programing, and offers StudioKids—art classes for children; StoryQuest, held on select Saturdays (see our Events listing), that brings the world of children’s literature to NOMA; and Family Art Workshops, featuring a hands-on art-making experience led by artists. Additionally, they offer an Arts Camp in June and July.
One Collins C. Diboll Circle, City Park,
504.658.4100, noma.org. Children under 7, free; 7-17, $6; adults $10. And Wednesdays are FREE admission days for all Louisiana residents, courtesy of the Helis Foundation.
There’s something to please everyone—including kids. The museum doesn’t overwhelm little ones, and because it is of and about the South, children can connect to the artwork, explains Ellen Balkin, the museum’s education coordinator. The Ogden also offers a variety of arts-inspired summer camps; at press time, a few still had openings.
Of special interest to families is Ogden After Hours, a celebration of Southern musicians held every Thursday evening from 5:30-8 pm (music starts at 6), and featuring a different kid’s art and craft project each week that is inspired by something within the museum.
925 Camp St., 504.539.9650, ogdenmuseum.org. Children under 5 are free; on Thursdays 10-5 pm, Louisiana residents get in for free.
According to spokesperson Lauren Busch, the museum is “very welcoming for families and children” with kid-friendly and fun exhibits. You can visit for a day, or check out their weekly summer camps, which let the kids have hands-on and fun cooking experience. Each day there’s a new recipe and campers work together measuring, chopping, and stirring to create a delicious and healthy lunch to enjoy with each other.
1504 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd., 504.569.0405, southernfood.org. Children 12 and up, $10. Children under 12, free.