OSWEGO, NY – For many, having 80 energetic young children running around for hours under one roof could be a nightmare.
However, for Jillian Shaver, it’s just another day at the Children’s Museum Of Oswego.
Over the holidays, CMOO helped hundreds of children travel “around the world” without ever leaving the Port City.
“Take a Trip Around the World with CMOO” wrapped up Sunday with a special children’s concert “One World, Many Stories.”
The program, at 7 W. Bridge St., gave youngsters and their families the opportunity to explore two floors of interactive exhibits as well as daily programming exploring cultures from around the world.
From dressup play in traditional costume and storytelling, presentations of cultural dance, music and food to live animal shows, CMOO’s program offered children an inside look into world cultures.
Each day highlighted a different region of the world.
Nellica Huff visited with the children and shared some culture from the Middle East, including some Israeli dances.
“I’ve been teaching Israeli dance since I was 16, so that’s been a few years,” Huff said. “It’s a type of folkdance that originated in the Middle East and has a lot of influences from Middle and Eastern Europe.”
The Sterling resident also showed the children Israeli instruments like a drum called the Doumbek and allowed them to try their hand with the instruments.
“It’s been a lot of fun. The kids have been just fantastic,” Shaver said. “We had, on average, around 80 or more each day.”
In the Culture Hut children could explore costumes, hats, instruments, textiles, books, play food, animals and more from around the world.
Besides the cultural displays and activities on the first floor, there were various stations on the second floor that allowed the children to dress up and play as firefighters, police officers, utility workers and other occupations. Or they could make music on an organ and large chimes.
CMOO has been working to develop the visioning statement of the museum as it translates to a permanent location, Shaver explained.
They are grateful to Tony Pauldine for allowing them use of the Buckhout-Jones building and hope to create a more permanent space there, she said.
They will be packing up and storing their exhibits and materials for a while as the site will be used next month for the annual warm up Oswego festival.
“Take a Trip Around the World with CMOO” is made possible in part with support from Anthony Pauldine, Fitzgibbons Agency, Nelson Law Firm, Pathfinder Bank and Parkhurst Enterprises.
It is the organization’s mission to establish a non-profit Children’s Museum in Oswego for the benefit of children, families, educators and caregivers in the community.
The museum will house a variety of interactive exhibits designed to promote physical and intellectual development. Exhibits will focus on aspects of current and historical local significance, imaginative play, the arts, science and mathematics.
The Children’s Museum of Oswego will offer programs for various age groups that provide a structured learning objective such as crafts, topics in science exploration, environmental studies, music and movement and literacy activities.
Last year, they went on the road sharing several activities and exhibits at Harborfest, farmers’ markets and other locations.
CMOO is working on community outreach and development of its vision as a as a one of a kind place for children and families to enrich their lives through interactive play.
What is a Children’s Museum?
Children’s museums are based on the idea that play is the gateway to childhood learning. Through a hands-on approach, children are presented with interactive exhibits that build understandings of early learning concepts in a unique environment.
Inside the museum, children are encouraged to touch, move, build, make noise and explore.
For additional information or to make a donation to The Children’s Museum of Oswego, please email [email protected] or call 315-326-1110.