The I.D.E.A. (Imagination, Design, Experience, Art) Museum was known as the Arizona Museum for Youth, but “rebranded” last year with this name. They redesigned and came up with a beautiful format. I wasn’t in the area before it rebranded, but I think they did a great job making it visually appealing to all ages. Check out this article from the East Valley Tribune on their transformation.
We parked behind the museum in the parking lot off of Pepper Place .
As we walked in, there were a lot of musical xylophones and drums for the kids (and adults) to play on. Yes, Munchie is wearing his fireman hat from Surprise Safety Day .
Luckily there was more than one mallet per station so giggles could get in on the musical action too.
These were huge pipes that had a very heavy mallet, but Giggles handled it well!
And this fun was all BEFORE we got inside!
So when you enter the I.D.E.A. museum, you can either go left or right. The right side of the museum is completely for children four and under, so that was perfect for all of us (and of course parents too).
We visited “Artville” (the section for children four and under) and the kids had a blast. It was a bit busy there because it was the First Free Sunday, but the kids were able to get to see and experience everything. I did carry Dimples in his Bjorn carrier as strollers are discouraged from this area.
This was a huge, soft building block area for the little kids to build whatever they could imagine. Giggles and Daddy spent most of their time here.
Munchie had a blast playing inside the train. There is a television screen that makes it feel like you are going down a track, with a button to “stop” the train from moving. Unfortunately Giggles did not like the dark so much.
There is also three bathrooms behind the Puppet area, as well as a “nursing/family room”. Two of the bathrooms are more kid sized and one is more for the adults and the baby changing.
Then we headed to the “left wing” of the museum, called the “hub”. This area was more for the older kids, but Munchie and Giggles did a little exploring as well.
We Walked around a bit and Munchie found the “campout room”. It’s a dark room lit with black lights. Because I didn’t want to ruin the experience for the other museum goers with my flash, this is the only picture I took. You will have to go and experience it for yourself!
On this side of the “hub” there was also another set of restrooms (across from the campout room) and the “snackery” which is an area that you can eat your own brought in food or buy food from the vending machines. They also had huge bean bag chairs to sit on (or throw around!).
The Hub area had a lot of craft type activities for older kids. Well, I’m sure my kids could have done it but there was glue-and glue sometimes just doesn’t go well for anyone, so we skipped that part. But it looked like a lot of older kids were having a blast creating all sorts of things.
150 W. Pepper Place
Mesa, AZ 85201