Friday, October 19, 2007

Phoenix Children's Museum seeking donations to finish renovation

[Source: Jahna Berry, Arizona Republic] -- Construction crews are working hard to meet the June opening date for the Children's Museum of Phoenix. So are fundraisers. The museum needs $12.3 million for construction and renovation work at the historic Monroe School. Supporters have raised $6.7 million so far. The next round of donations will fund the final phase of construction and some of the exhibits, said Tom Ambrose, chairman of the museum board. "We're getting there," said Ambrose, who recently took his grandson to the Phoenix Zoo in 100-degree heat. More than 2,000 other families were also there that night, he recalled. "That tells me that there is a need for children's activities in this area." In early November, museum supporters plan to have another fundraising push, "Night of 100 Parties." There will be parties around the Valley during a 24-hour period from Nov. 9 and Nov. 10 to raise money for the children's museum.

The 1913 school will go through a dramatic transformation over the next few months. While the historic parts of the building near Van Buren and Seventh Streets will be preserved, a 1980s addition will be overhauled for massive exhibits. Like a three-story cable and platform "Tower Climber" that children - and adults - can climb. "We are able to play with the architecture to get the 'wow' features," said Deborah Gilpin, the museum's president and CEO. [Note: To read the full article, click here.]