Mexico: Festival of Toys opens at the Chicago Children's Museum

On Monday morning, Colin and I headed down to the Chicago Children's Museum (one of our fave spots) to check out the brand new Mexico: Festival of Toys Exhibit.

We both totally loved it.

This museum-wide exhibit is the best one I've ever seen at the CCM. The exhibit is both interactive and educational. The atmosphere is bright and vibrant but with clean, minimal design. Kids are going to spend many happy hours exploring and creating in this space.

The exhibit originated at the Papalote Children's Museum in Mexico City
and features more than 600 toys including handmade dolls, puppets,
marionettes, traditional puzzles, games, musical instruments, and
wood-carved animals. Some of the pieces date back to the 1920's.

These cultural pieces (which are displayed in glass cases) served as the
inspiration for the interactive components of the experience.
Interactive highlights include:

  • An amazing DIY Toy Workshop where kids can create their own dolls, vehicles or puppets. This place is like a kid's craft heaven. Kids can then pose with their creation in a photo booth and write a story about it. 
  • A Puppet Theater where kids can design their own puppet and put on a show.
  • Rattle-rama -- a space where infants and toddlers can make music! (Colin hung out here for a long time).

Festival of Toys will be open until March 13, 2011 -- but you shouldn't
wait nearly that long to go check it out. Check out the photo gallery
to get a better idea of the exhibit (and forgive the blurry iPhone pics I
took while I was chasing my toddler around).



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  • Hello Caitlin,
    I am the designer who worked on Mexico: Festival of Toys for CCM. I am on the look-out for photos of the exhibit for use on my new company's website - Design Play (under construction). I loved the few that you have of what we called "Rattle Rama"! I didn't get any good ones of that area. Is it possible that you would let me use them for my portfolio? Thanks in advance for your consideration. And so glad you enjoyed the exhibit and thanks for spreading the word on great experiences in Chicago!
    Jenny Schrider

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