The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

March 15, 2014

Sometimes you need a little Tinkering with a good thing

Leonardo’s gearing up for busy season

Bridget Nash, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — One of Enid’s landmarks is Leonardo’s Children’s Museum, a place where children can play, discover and learn.

“We have a whole lot going on,” said Julie Baird, executive director.

Leonardo’s Children’s Museum has its Discovery Warehouse, which houses indoor exhibits and activities for kids, and also Adventure Quest, an elaborate outdoor play area.

The current traveling exhibit, Building Buddies, will be at Leonardo’s until March 23, and an anticipated exhibit, Red Dirt Dinos, will arrive April 8 for children to enjoy.

“It’s a dinosaur exhibit about dinosaurs that roamed Oklahoma,” Baird said. “They are really cool because they are animatronic. What they do depends on movement from our guests.”

This week will see the annual spring break camp at the museum.

“Spring break is one of the busiest weeks here at Leonardo’s,” said Baird.

“Dino Arts Fest” is the theme of the camp for children in pre-kindergarten through fifth-grade.

Leonardo’s first new permanent exhibit, Tinkering, is one that gives children the opportunity to work with their hands while they discover the science of creating useful objects.

“It gives kids the opportunity to tinker with all sorts of materials and maybe see things in a different way.”

Each Saturday Leonardo’s hosts art and science classes for no other charge than the regular price of admission.

“Art Quest is the first and third Saturday each month and the second and fourth Saturdays is Weekend Wonders, sponsored by McDonald’s,” said Baird.

This month there are five Saturdays, and Baird said the museum staff always plan special events for fifth Saturdays.

Toddler Art is another regular event at Leonardo’s. Toddler Art is every Thursday at 10:30 a.m.

Leonardo’s Children’s Museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and 1-5 p.m. Sunday.

Baird said when Enid schools have scheduled days off that fall on Mondays, Leonardo’s opens on those Mondays.

One of the most recent changes to Leonardo’s has been the renovation of the first-floor restrooms, an update that will benefit all visitors to the museum.

A recent honor for Leonardo’s was its nomination for the ONE (Oklahoma Non-Profit Excellence) Award. Leonardo’s has become a finalist for that award.

“There are three finalists in eight categories,” said Baird.

The original pool of nominations was around 1,900, said Baird.

“To be a finalist is a tremendous honor,” said Baird.

Admission to Leonardo’s is $8, and children ages 2 and younger are admitted free. Groups of 16 people or more get in for $6 each, and senior citizens are admitted for $7.