Permanent Exhibits

Exhibit Guides

Two floors of interactive exhibits in an open-ended design encourage children to be the leader as you follow their curiosity through our exhibits.

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City Capers

Step into our kid-size city, complete with a supermarket, restaurant, hospital, construction zone, and shoe store. Children can become doctors, chefs, construction workers and more as they don costumes and experience a city built just for them.

Children learn: decision making, fine motor skills, classification, engineering, healthy living, communication, collaboration

Support for City Capers provided by:

Betsey and Jack Ryan  –  Christa and Calvin Schmidt  –  McNeil Consumer Products

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Roadside Attractions

Travel around town! Climb into a real car, a SEPTA bus, or a trolley and go for a pretend ride. Stroll through City Park, grab some play ice cream at our Bassetts Ice Cream counter, build a car, or take a turn on one of our mini-backhoe machines.

Children learn: gross and fine motor skills, STEAM literacy, collaboration, decision making, communication

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River Adventures

Reach into our little Schuylkill River and explore pumps, dams, jets, and other forces that affect the way water flows. Move waterwheels, float boats and rubber duckies, and investigate the levers and locks that bring the water to life. Gaze up into the clouds as the wind blows, the cloud rains, the sun shines, and the rainbow appears.

Children learn: STEAM literacy, environmental science, fine motor skills

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Wonderland

Head down the ramp and through the rabbit hole to a place where nothing is as it seems. Make your way through the hedge maze to find the never-ending tea party and the Duchess’s kitchen. Dress up and join the Mad Hatter and March Hare for tea, or paint the roses red. Navigate your way through the Hall of Mirrors where you’ll find optical illusions around every corner.

Children learn: visual literacy, special awareness, Gross and fine motor skills, problem solving

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Hamilton Hall

What can you find under the magnificent glass dome at the center of Memorial Hall? It’s the Statue of Liberty’s torch! Of course, unlike the real torch, which was displayed nearby during the 1876 Centennial Exhibition, this torch was made completely out of toys by “junk sculptor” Leo Sewell.

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Please Touch Garden

When the weather is warm, step outside the Café and into the Please Touch Garden where vegetables and herbs grow. Have a seat on the patio in this urban oasis or take a stroll through the cornstalks, pepper plants, and tomatoes that will soon make their way into the kitchen upstairs.

Children learn: environmental literacy, gross motor skills, health literacy, classification

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Centennial Exploration

The gorgeous Memorial Hall wasn’t always Please Touch Museum. Peer into the massive model of the 1876 Centennial Exhibition and learn about the important history of this great building. Kids can fire up the locomotive’s engine and ring the bell! Or set up a wooden train set that can span half of the room.

Children learn: innovation, history, fine motor skills

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Woodside Park Dentzel Carousel

Take a spin on our glimmering carousel, which was built over 100 years ago and was a mainstay of nearby Woodside Park for nearly half a century. After being warehoused by the Smithsonian Institution, the carousel’s 52 animals (40 horses, four cats, four rabbits, two pigs, and two goats) and 1,296 lights were lovingly restored and brought back to Philadelphia.

Carousel tickets are available at the admissions desk.

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Flight Fantasy

Blast into orbit in our space station. Children can assemble and launch rockets high into the air, or take the lead by exploring the Mission Control console.

Children learn: STEAM literacy, fine motor skills

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Elaine Wideman Vaughn Program Room

The Program Room encompasses a variety of process-oriented and open-ended activities designed to foster creativity, stimulate problem solving and critical thinking skills, nourish adult/child relationships, cultivate reading and pre-reading skills, support school readiness initiatives, promote family/group learning, encourage a love of the visual and performing arts, and also include elements of math and science learning in an intimate and innovative setting.

Children learn: Creative thinking and expression, STEAM

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Toddler Zones

PTM has several zones dedicated to our youngest visitors—age three and under. These spaces are excellent learning experiences for toddlers just beginning to explore.

Nature’s Pond
Fairytale
Front Step

Children learn: Pre-reading skills, communication, gross motor, body control, sensory exploration

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Imagination Playground

Step into the world of giant blue foam blocks where the possibilities for play are endless. What will you construct? How high will it be? How will you play with it?

Children learn: STEM literacy, fine and gross motor skills, creativity, problem solving

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Hours of Operation

Monday - Saturday: 9 am to 5 pm
Sunday: 11 am to 5 pm
Christmas Eve: 9 am to 3 pm
New Year's Eve: 9 am to 3 pm
Thanksgiving & Christmas Day: CLOSED

Contact Information

Memorial Hall, Fairmount Park
4231 Avenue of the Republic
(formerly North Concourse Drive)
Philadelphia, PA 19131
Click here for directions.

Phone: 215-581-3181
Email: info@pleasetouchmuseum.org

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