Saturday, December 11, 2010

Curious George Traveling Exhibit at Pretend City®

29 Hubble
Irvine, CA 92618
(949) 428-3900
Now until January 30, 2011
Entrance to the Curious George exhibit is an additional $1 on top of the museum entrance fee ($11) for non-members >12 months old. Members enter the exhibit for free. You can purchase tickets online at the Pretend City® website or on site.

Parking is free. The Pretend City® parking lot is small so there is limited space. The museum is set within an industrial area surrounded by office buildings. Signs are posted on parking spaces and in the lot where museum guests can not park. However, street parking is available.

Stroller/wheelchair accessibility
The museum is accessible by stroller and wheelchair. There is stroller parking inside the museum, right at the entrance of the "City."

Restroom facilities
Restrooms for guests are in 3 locations in the museum: behind the gift shop, by the marina, and next to the cafe. The restrooms next to the Real Cafe are large family restrooms with a changing table. 

There is a small cafe inside the museum as well as 2 vending machines. The Real Cafe offers limited food services. There is no kitchen, all food sold have been prepared elsewhere. There are 2 microwaves in the cafe area that guests can use.

The Curious George exhibit is packed with things to do for the young explorer. Every aspect of the exhibit structure is cleverly integrated with hands-on activities. There are monitors throughout the exhibit where guests can watch a video relevant to the specific activity. 
Inquisitive minds will have the opportunity to learn about: shapes, colors, wind, shadows, animals, fruits & vegetables, and lots more. Curious George fans can learn about wind and how it works in a farm setting. Guests can manipulate the wind using fans and make pinwheels and windsock in the craft area. Your child can explore outer space while riding in a rocketship with George. Guests can shop for, or sell, fruits and vegetables in a produce market. 
Engineers can build towers and operate a conveyor belt. Parents and children can put on a shadow puppet show and create new colors. Fans of the PBS cartoon will recognize familiar faces in wall murals and can romper around George's apartment lobby. 
If your explorer wants some respite from adventure, there is a bench, with some books, right at the exhibit entrance where they can have some down time to read about their favorite monkey. And most importantly, everyone will have the opportunity to take a picture with the cutest, most curious monkey in the world. Throughout the day, George visits the museum and poses with new friends. For Curious George aficionados, there is a gift shop at the museum entrance full of trademarked items for sale.

Our family experience
My son is crazy over George. He had such a great time playing in the exhibit. In 40 minutes, he was able to play with all the activities at least once. He just started getting interested in costume play and was excited to put on the Doorman's costume. He kept pressing the elevator button and opening and closing the elevator doors, pretending to be the Doorman. As far as safety, the exhibit is set apart from the rest of the "City," and there is only one entrance/exit to the exhibit. Pretend City® gets crowded on certain days due to field trips. I suggest calling the museum to find out if they have groups coming in as the Curious George exhibit does get crowded. After visiting the exhibit, we explored the rest of the "City." 

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post. The opinions expressed in this post are solely mine. I was under no obligation to provide a positive review.