Museum will reopen in September after experiencing flood damage in January
In January, DuPage Children’s Museum (DCM) experienced a flood which damaged all three floors, causing the museum to temporarily close. DCM will officially reopen its doors to the public on September 19.
DCM has been designing and building a temporary mini-museum, meeting with parties to plan the destruction and re-imagination of the building and exhibits, converting what would have been field trips to the museum into Learning Labs held in the schools, planning summer camps, staying present in the community with off-site events, fundraising and finally, planning the reopening of the museum.
“The hard reality of rebuilding an entire museum is that there are so many moving pieces, timelines can fluctuate almost daily. One day you’re ahead of schedule, the next day you’re a week behind,” said Kimberly Stull, Director of Exhibits and Operations.
The building construction is actually just a small piece of the timeline to reopen.
The larger, more time consuming part of the museum re-imagination is the building and repair of the custom exhibits.
The process of making a new exhibit typically takes upwards of two years from concept to installation.
DCM is managing to shorten that timeline down to mere months.
Director of Marketing and Sales, Dee Dee McDevitt, said that tremendous support from the community and hard work of DCM staff has helped the museum immensely.
The temporary location, DCM@The Mall, continues to draw large crowds and reach new audiences.
The mall location will remain open at least through August 31 and may be open a bit longer.
During their closure, DCM has been listening and will be incorporating many comments and suggestions that have been made.
Upon reopening, The Studio will be open more hours and the museum hours are being extended to stay open until 8 p.m. on Thursday and Friday during the school year to accommodate the schedules of more families.
A new lobby will welcome members and visitors, and new flooring and fresh paint were added throughout the building. Museum “Neighborhoods” including Creativity Connections, Make It Move, Build It, and The Studio, will still be part of the experience but will include fun new features alongside familiar favorites.
There will also be a brand new innovative exhibit in the shadow area that uses unique technology allowing visitors to interact with virtual sand.
An exciting line-up of events is planned for the reopening kick-off celebration week.
Check DCM’s website for updates at www.dupagechildrensmuseum.org and follow DCM on Facebook and Twitter.