Last weekend we really wanted to take the boys to the zoo on Saturday, but it was only in the 30s and the wind made it feel even colder. Colder temperatures usually mean less crowds and more activity from the animals, but it was just a little too cold for these guys. Instead, I was able to talk Shane into driving up to Baltimore to check out the Port Discovery Children’s Museum. I’ve heard nothing but really great things about this place and I was hoping that there would be enough things for the boys to do, seeing as they’re still quite little. The cheapskate in me also wanted to take advantage of the fact that the museum is free to kids 2 & under.
When we arrived there was a line out the door and maybe half a block long. We’re told it was due to the fact that it was Dr. Seuss’s birthday and they had a ton of events at the museum to celebrate. So much for not being outside in the cold temps! After about 20 minutes, we finally got inside and gave the boys a snack before exploring all the different spaces of the museum.
The center of the museum is where you’ll find KidWorks, which is described as a “three-story urban treehouse” where kids can climb, crawl and jump around. This was definitely a big-kid area so we stayed away, but I can envision the boys enjoying this space in the future. The rest of the exhibits circled around KidWorks on each of the three levels.
After a bit of exploring and some crawling on large wooden train, we made our way over to Tot Trails. This exhibit was pretty much the main reason I knew that there would be something to do for the boys. This room was limited to kids under the age of three. All of the surfaces were really soft and there were lots of things to see and explore. We started out in the really cushioned area where Caleb was able to crawl, roll and pull up to kneeling while checking himself out in the mirror. I took Wyatt to another part of the room that had a section with a large version of what I can only describe as a Light Bright. The plastic pegs fit into the holes in front of an illuminated wall so the pegs glowed in awesome colors. It was really neat. Caleb liked the textured wall and a crab with lots of mirrors on it (I’m starting to sense a theme here).
There were also sand tables (messy) and an interactive floor where the projected image moved when you stepped on it. Like the leaves would blow around when you stepped on the image… hard to explain, but definitely a hit with Wyatt… Caleb, not so much.
There was also a “Mountain Trail” and “Paw Paw Tunnel” that was just the right size for toddlers. An inclined ramp with steps was an awesome game (and therapy!) for Caleb. We really had a ton of fun in the Tot Trails room and it was nice that all the kids were little so you weren’t so paranoid about them getting trampled.
The last area we explored was the Wonders of Water exhibit. It included a stream table where both boys got to splash around in the water. The museum provides rain jackets and Crocs should you choose to borrow them. There wasn’t any rain jackets tiny enough for the boys to wear but Wyatt found a pair of Crocs that fit so he was able to explore with out getting his socks wet. By this time, we had been at the museum for almost two hours and the boys were starting to fade so we packed up, changed out of wet shirts and into dry ones and made our voyage home.
I foresee many visits to Port Discovery for years to come. What a fantastic place and there are many more exhibits we have yet to explore! I was very happy to have added this place on my 29 Before 29 list; another task crossed off!