Exploring the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis – Insider’s Guide

The world’s largest children’s museum is located right here in Indianapolis! At The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, enjoy five fun and interactive learning floors, plus seven acres of outdoor sports activities in Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience.

This amazing destination offers a unique blend of education, exploration, and entertainment for children and adults alike. With five floors of fascinating exhibits and attractions, including the incredible Indianapolis Children’s Museum dinosaur exhibit, this museum promises an unforgettable experience filled with adventure and discovery. Ready to step into a world of wonder and excitement? Let’s begin our journey!

Children's Museum
One of the best Children’s Museums in the World!

Discovering the Dinosaur Exhibit at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

As you enter the museum, prepare to be transported back in time to the age of dinosaurs. The Dinosphere exhibit, part of the Earth exhibit, offers a thrilling encounter with these prehistoric giants. Here, you’ll find fossils, interactive elements for kids, and even a carousel, making it a must-visit attraction for the whole family!

The Dinosphere exhibit is a great way to learn about the history of our planet and the dinosaurs.

children;s museum

Dinosphere: A Prehistoric Adventure

Step into the Dinosphere and embark on a prehistoric adventure like no other! This immersive exhibit at the world’s largest children’s museum, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, features life-sized dinosaur replicas, realistic environments, and hands-on activities that will captivate and inspire visitors of all ages.

Take your kids to the Jurassic Paleo Labs and witness them discovering fossils. They can even have a close up view of a T. rex bone! Watch the scientists work their magic too. The Dinosphere offers a unique opportunity to learn about these magnificent creatures while engaging in fun, interactive experiences.

Fossils and Paleontology

At the Dinosphere exhibit, you’ll delve into the fascinating world of fossils and paleontology. As your kids play and learn in this interactive environment, you’ll have the chance to observe real fossils and gain insights from the museum’s knowledgeable staff.

Interactive Elements for KidsDiscovering the Dinosaur Exhibit at The Children's Museum of Indianapolis

The Dinosphere exhibit is designed with kids in mind, offering a range of interactive elements to spark their curiosity and imagination. From digging for fossils to learning about dinosaur behavior, children can engage with touch screens that provide fun facts and quizzes about different types of bones.

It’s a hands-on learning experience that’s both educational and entertaining!

Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience

Riley Children's Health Sports Legends Experience

For sports enthusiasts, the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience is a must-visit attraction. This innovative indoor and outdoor play space features 15 amazing exhibits that allow kids and grown-ups to have fun together while participating in various sports activities.

The outdoor section of the Sports Legends Experiences is typically open mid March through October. 

 

Riley Children's Health Sports Legends Experience
Riley Children's Health Sports Legends Experience

12 Outdoor Sports Zones

Venture outside to explore the 12 Outdoor Sports Zones, each dedicated to a different sport. With hands-on activities and challenges, kids will have the opportunity to shoot some hoops, throw a football around, or practice their mini-golf skills.

It’s a fantastic way to stay active and have fun while learning about different sports.

Riley Children's Health Sports Legends Experience

Sports Legends

The Sports Legends exhibit honors the achievements and inspiring stories of sports legends from various fields. Through interactive exhibits and displays, you’ll learn about the dedication, perseverance, and talent that propelled these individuals to greatness.

Riley Children's Health Sports Legends Experience

What makes the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends different from any other sports experience?

What sets the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience apart from other sports experiences is its focus on inclusivity, education, and fun. With 12 outdoor and three indoor sports experiences, everyone – regardless of age, size, or ability – can join in the fun.

Plus, all the exhibits are hands-on, allowing you to jump right into the action and embrace the spirit of sportsmanship!

Riley Children's Health Sports Legends Experience

Must-Visit Exhibits Inside the Indianapolis Children’s Museum

In addition to the Dinosphere and the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience, there are plenty of must-visit exhibits inside the museum. Some of these include:

  • ScienceWorks
  • Take Me ThereⓇ: Greece
  • American POP!
  • Fireworks of Glass

You’ll find a world of discovery waiting to be explored.

Let’s take a closer look at these captivating indoor exhibits, which are a part of the national geographic treasures!

ScienceWorks

ScienceWorks is an engaging exhibit that offers interactive experiences focused on:

  • Indiana’s rivers
  • weather
  • agriculture
  • geology

Here, children can learn, explore, and play while gaining a deeper understanding of the natural world around them.

In this exhibit, kids can have fun playing and learning about rivers, levees, and dams at the giant water table, or discover how weather stations work and make forecasts using Doppler radar. With over 100 interactive exhibits, ScienceWorks is sure to spark curiosity and wonder in children of all ages.

ScienceWorks

Take Me There: Greece

Embark on a cultural journey with the Take Me There: Greece exhibit. This immersive experience allows you to:

  • Explore Greek culture and daily life through engaging displays and activities
  • Learn traditional Greek dances
  • Marvel at ancient artifacts
  • Immerse yourself in the rich history and traditions of this fascinating country.

Discover the vibrant culture of Greece through interactive exhibits and activities. Learn about the country’s history. 

American POP!

Delve into the world of pop culture with the American Pop! Exhibit. This exhibit celebrates the best of:

  • Marvel
  • DC
  • Fashion
  • Movies
  • Music

It offers a captivating look at the trends and icons that have shaped American history. From comic book heroes to movie stars, American Pop! This is a tribute to the creative forces that continue to inspire and entertain us.

This exhibit is a must-see for anyone interested in the history of American pop culture.

Pop Children's Museum of Indianapolis

Fireworks of Glass

Prepare to be dazzled by the Fireworks of Glass exhibit, featuring a mesmerizing display of 3,200 blown glass pieces by renowned artist Dale Chihuly. Located in the museum’s central atrium, this colorful, awe-inspiring exhibit is a must-see for art enthusiasts and casual visitors alike.

The pieces range from small, intricate glass sculptures to large, vibrant installations. Each piece is unique.

Fireworks of Glass
Fireworks of Glass

Playscape

For the little ones, Playscape® is the perfect place to explore and play. Designed specifically for kids aged 5 and under, this area offers various play zones and daily creative programming, such as art projects, music and movement, and story time. 

It’s a wonderful space for young children to learn, grow, and have fun.

Playscape at the Children's Museum
Playscape at the Children's Museum

The Power of Children: Making a Difference®

The Power of Children: Making a Difference® exhibit showcases the inspiring stories of three young heroes who faced discrimination and made a lasting impact on the world: Anne Frank, Ruby Bridges, and Ryan White. Through immersive displays and interactive elements, visitors can learn about their lives, challenges, and the incredible strength of the human spirit.

These stories serve as powerful reminders of the resilience and determination of young people in the face of adversity. By sharing their stories, The Power of Children: Making a Difference® exhibit aims to inspire a new generation of changemakers and encourage visitors to stand up for what is right.

Beyond Spaceship Earth

Beyond Spaceship Earth Children's Museum Indianapolis _ Indy's Child Magazine

Journey into the final frontier with the Beyond Spaceship Earth exhibit, an immersive experience in space exploration. This out-of-this-world adventure includes:

  • Going inside the International Space Station
  • Learning about life in space
  • Discovering the challenges faced by astronauts
  • Exploring the groundbreaking research conducted in this unique environment.

With artifacts, interactive displays, and engaging activities, Beyond Spaceship Earth offers a truly stellar experience for the whole family.

Beyond Spaceship Earth
Beyond Spaceship Earth

Can’t-Miss Events

Throughout the year, the best Children’s Museum of Indianapolis hosts various special events that are sure to delight and entertain visitors of all ages. From the Annual Haunted House and WinterFaire to Museum by Moonlight, these can’t-miss events provide unique experiences and memories that will last a lifetime at one of the most engaging children’s museums.

The Children’s Museum Guild’s Annual Haunted House

Get ready for a spooktacular time at The Children’s Museum Guild’s Annual Haunted House! This family-friendly event offers just the right amount of scares and thrills, with a haunted haunted house, trick-or-treating, and other fun activities.

Perfect for all ages, the Annual Haunted House is a Halloween tradition not to be missed.

Children's museum haunted house

WinterFaire – a brand-new enchanted winter adventure

Celebrate the season’s magic at WinterFaire, a brand-new enchanted winter adventure filled with festive activities and holiday cheer. WinterFaire offers:

  • Zoom down WinterSlide
  • Visit with Santa
  • Meet WinterFaire’s enchanted creatures
Children's Museum Christmas Slide
Annual Yule Slide at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

Museum by Moonlight- Adult-Only Fundraiser

Indulge in a night of grown-up fun at the Museum by Moonlight, an adults-only fundraiser featuring:

  • Exclusive access to the museum’s exhibits and entertainment
  • Live music
  • Delicious food
  • Drinks

All while supporting the museum’s educational programs and initiatives.

It’s an unforgettable evening for a great cause!

First Thursday Night

Make the most of your visit with discounted admission on First Thursday Nights! From 4-8 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month, enjoy evening access to the museum and outdoor sports experiences for just $6. It’s a fantastic opportunity to explore the museum’s offerings with friends and family at a fraction of the regular admission price.

Lilly Theater

Experience the magic of live theater at the Lilly Theater, where families can enjoy engaging stage performances that introduce young children to the world of theater. With various shows and events throughout the year, the Lilly Theater offers captivating entertainment for audiences of all ages.

Lilly Theater

Planning Your Visit to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

Planning ahead is important to make the most of your visit to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. Let’s take a look at some key information to help you plan the perfect visit.

Where is the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis located?

The Indianapolis chidlren’s museum is located at 3000 N Meridian St, Indianapolis, IN 46208, close to downtown Indianapolis.

Rex from the Indianapolis Children's Museum

Admission and Ticketing

When planning your visit, consider the various admission options and ticketing information available. General admission tickets offer access to the museum and the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience. When this experience is running, you can benefit from it with the same ticket. Additionally, the museum offers flexible pricing, allowing you to save on admission if you purchase tickets ahead of time.

And if you plan on visiting frequently, a membership provides free admission, discounts on special events, and access to members-only events.

Accessibility and Fun for All at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is committed to ensuring accessibility for all visitors, making it a welcoming and inclusive environment for everyone. By actively seeking input from families who have firsthand experience, the museum strives to create a more user-friendly and enjoyable visit for all.

The museum recognizes that each individual’s needs may vary, and they provide a range of accessibility features and services to cater to diverse requirements. This includes wheelchair-accessible entrances and exhibits, accessible restrooms, and designated parking spaces. Additionally, the museum provides assistive listening devices for individuals with hearing impairments and sensory bags for visitors who may benefit from sensory support. By prioritizing accessibility, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis ensures that everyone can fully engage and participate in their enriching and educational experiences.

2024 Free Days at the Indianapolis Children’s Museum:

  • January 15: Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • February 19: Presidents Day
  • June (TBD): Juneteenth Jamboree
  • September (TBD): Fiesta de la Familia
  • December 24: Christmas Eve

Indiana Access Pass

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is proud to partner with other local museums to make family fun available to more Indiana families. Families that participate in the Indiana Access Pass can visit for just $2 per family member per visit at any time. Children under age two always receive free admission.

Upcoming Events at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis: 

June

202409mar(mar 9)2:00 pm02sep(sep 2)2:00 pmNickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™: Secrets of the Sewer(March 9) 2:00 pm - (September 2) 2:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

July

202409mar(mar 9)2:00 pm02sep(sep 2)2:00 pmNickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™: Secrets of the Sewer(March 9) 2:00 pm - (September 2) 2:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

202404jul4:00 pm8:00 pmFirst Thursday Night at The Children’s Museum4:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

August

202409mar(mar 9)2:00 pm02sep(sep 2)2:00 pmNickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™: Secrets of the Sewer(March 9) 2:00 pm - (September 2) 2:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

202401aug4:00 pm8:00 pmFirst Thursday Night at The Children’s Museum4:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

202415aug9:00 am10:00 amCreate-A-Saurus: Discover, Imagine, and Sculpt Paleo Art9:00 am - 10:00 am(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryCraft Event,Museum/Zoo Event,Preschoolers

202423aug9:00 am10:00 amCreate-A-Saurus: Discover, Imagine, and Sculpt Paleo Art9:00 am - 10:00 am(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryCraft Event,Museum/Zoo Event,Preschoolers

202424aug7:00 pm11:00 pmMuseum by Moonlight: Museum Ever After7:00 pm - 11:00 pm(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryAdults Only,Museum/Zoo Event

September

202409mar(mar 9)2:00 pm02sep(sep 2)2:00 pmNickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles™: Secrets of the Sewer(March 9) 2:00 pm - (September 2) 2:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

202405sep4:00 pm8:00 pmFirst Thursday Night at The Children’s Museum4:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

October

202403oct4:00 pm8:00 pmFirst Thursday Night at The Children’s Museum4:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

202409oct4:00 pm7:00 pmMuseum My WayAn adaptive museum experience4:00 pm - 7:00 pm(GMT-04:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event,Sensory Friendly,Special NeedsFilterSensory-Friendly

November

202407nov4:00 pm8:00 pmFirst Thursday Night at The Children’s Museum4:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

December

202405dec4:00 pm8:00 pmFirst Thursday Night at The Children’s Museum4:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event

202410dec4:00 pm7:00 pmMuseum My WayAn adaptive museum experience4:00 pm - 7:00 pm(GMT-05:00) The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, 3000 North Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46208CategoryMuseum/Zoo Event,Sensory Friendly,Special NeedsFilterSensory-Friendly

Summary

From the awe-inspiring Dinosphere exhibit to the interactive ScienceWorks experience, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis offers endless opportunities for learning, exploration, and fun. With engaging exhibits, special events, and world-class amenities, this museum is a must-visit destination for families seeking adventure and discovery. So, what are you waiting for? Plan your visit today and create memories that will last a lifetime!

How long does it take to go through the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis?

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is the world’s largest, so plan on spending an entire day exploring!

You can easily spend a few hours in the main museum and another three hours in the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience.

The Children's Museum of Indianapolis

Can you bring food into the Indianapolis Children’s Museum?

The Indianapolis Children’s Museum allows you to bring your own food and beverages from home, while also having a cafeteria-style food court and a concession stand outside for those who prefer to buy food.

The museum offers a variety of options for visitors to enjoy a meal or snack while exploring the exhibits. The cafeteria-style food court offers a variety of hot and cold meals, snacks, and drinks. The concession stand outside offers a selection of snacks and drinks. Both options provide a solution.

Indy's Child
Indy's Child
For 40 years, Indy's Child has been the trusted source for Indianapolis families seeking fun, educational, and enriching experiences. Our award-winning magazine and website are dedicated to providing expert advice, insider tips, and up-to-date information on everything from the best local attractions and events to parenting resources and support. As local experts deeply rooted in the central Indiana community, our passionate team at Indy's Child is dedicated to uncovering the best family-friendly experiences and resources our city has to offer. Whether you're new to parenting or looking for new ideas, Indy's Child is here to help you enjoy the adventure of raising a family in central Indiana.

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