Blast Off Into Fun at the Children’s Museum of Greater Fall River
For just about a decade, the Children's Museum of Greater Fall River has been growing inside the former Bristol County Superior Courthouse on North Main Street. And just last week one of the latest editions to the play space was unveiled.
Thanks to the vision of executive director, Jo-Ann Sbrega, and students in the Electronics Technology Department at Diman Regional Vocational-Technical High School, the museum's Outer Space exhibit launched its control panels and robotic arm.
While the space-themed indoor playground may have seemed like enough excitement for visitors of the museum, Sbrega thought bigger and added lights, rocket-launching sound effects, a robotic arm controlled on a TV screen as well as NASA-themed space pods for little ones to climb into.
Those are just a few of the exciting new things that have come to the Children's Museum of Greater Fall River in the last few years.
Like many local attractions, the pandemic hit the museum pretty hard. They had to close their doors from March 2020 through the end of that July and chose to close again December 2020 until February vacation week of 2021.
Not that they sat idly by while Covid kept them closed.
Sbrega told us a grant enabled the museum to build an outdoor playground during the pandemic and the downtime allowed them to refresh many existing exhibits as well as reorganize their gift shop space.
Now, with restrictions loosening, the museum is officially back up and running full steam ahead. They have recently reopened their water room and just last week brought back the iSandbox children love. In fact, Sbrega says the only pre-pandemic things yet to have returned are the "dress-up clothes in Violet's Music Room" though she added the museum has "invested in a washer and dryer for the museum with PPP (Paycheck Protection Program) money" so those could come back soon, too.
Guests have certainly found their way to the museum as well, with Sbrega informing that though they are "not at pre-pandemic numbers yet, [the museum] had really good numbers in the last month."
With all the new editions and exhibit openings, those numbers are sure to keep improving. Excellent news for local families who want to have this local treasure around for years to come. Increased guests as well as sought-after grant money helped to keep this non-profit organization growing year after year.
Take a look around below.