Kids & Lawyers Love This Museum!

Hey Readers: Check out St. Louis’ City Museum, as described in this delightful Wall Street Journal piece by Conor Dougherty. Despite — or because of — it’s slight frisson of danger (and five story jungle gym) it attracts 700,000 people a year. That’s a lot of climbing! — Lenore

20 Responses

  1. I think your link is a bit wrong — it seems to link to

  2. Yes, City Museum is a TERRIFIC place. All people, kids and adults alike, have a great time. There is even a deli/grill for lunchtime. You don’t usually see the whole place in one visit, it is a huge place, three old commercial stories high covering a city block, with the roof used as well, and there are a lot of things to do outside on the parking lot side, many of which are three stories tall!
    Just take responsibility for yourself. You can’t blame everything on someone else!!

    Terje Bolef

  3. The City Museum is a wonderful place. You can find kids of all ages interacting in a very imaginative environment. I have to say that all of the things I encountered had risks and dangers that were very obvious such as, giant slides, climbing obstacles made out of essentially some sort of super reinforced chicken wire, or ball pits of shallow depth (well marked), etc. Getting hurt here involves a certain amount of bravado, stupidity and generally alcohol which is sold on premises. The kids I saw were way more careful than the adults.

    It is very successful business and a big thrill for kids at heart and real kids as well.

  4. I love the City Museum. I bumped my head here in the caves and got quite a bump. It was worth every second and every bump. I ached the next day too but then I’m fairly unfit and it was great to play like a kid. My seven year old was braver than me and squeezed into smaller gaps than me too.

    She said it is the sort of place that you wish all soft play areas are like.

  5. Sounds like a lot of fun! I think what impresses me most is that they haven’t let the lawsuits get them down.

  6. Australia is full of places like this… Many a happy childhood memory playing on pieces of junk welded together into FUN. My brother and sister got a broken arm each, and I a burnt and blistered hand. Worth it? YES.

    There is something thrilling about a 6 story slippery-dip, or a 4m high “rocking horse”.

  7. Always a place we go. I try to keep up with the kids but I am (a) not as small as them and (b) not as flexible. The kids and I enjoy the climbing and crawling and everything. We get out before the older teens come in. It IS a place to go it you come to St Louis!

  8. We live near STL. The City Museum is an amazing, wonderful place!! My favorite activity is the after-hours “flashlight” events.

    The kids have a blast running around exploring in the dark!!

  9. […] Shield of Achilles (”naming and shaming”), Free-Range Kids (with reader […]

  10. Sounds like an awesome place. 🙂

    You know, looking at the numbers — 24 lawsuits in five years, out of 700,000 x 5 = 3,500,000 visits, that’s one lawsuit per almost 146,000 visits. Sounds pretty safe to me. Even figuring in all the minor stuff, like that kid’s scraped shin, that people are too sensible to sue over, that’s still not bad for what sounds like an excellent place to play. And you know, minor injuries like a scrape or bump are very useful in teaching kids how to be careful and what to be careful of, so it’s educational too. [wry smile]


  11. I was there for a reception a few years back. We had 50 year-olds in suits going down the two-story slide and climbing through the caves. Possibly the best thing to do in St. Louis.

  12. That is sooooooooo cool!!!

  13. Took my kids there last fall with no idea what we were getting into. Six hours later, we hobbled out, the girls thrilled and exhausted, me with sore knees and hands from climbing and crawling. They immediately declared we should go back again this year. It was a lot of fun. But if you go, may I recommend knee pads – not for the kids but for the old worn out parents!!

  14. I am intrigued by the sound of this place – although as someone terrified of heights myself, the thought of a 5-storey jungle gym freaks me out . I think I might have to see that first. Everything else sounds like a blast!
    We have little kids right now (under 3) so I’ll just have to file this place away for a few years as we often drive through St. Louis.

  15. I have never before had any desire to visit St. Louis before today. I can’t wait to go!

  16. I always wanted to go to this place when we lived in St. Louis, but my oldest daughter was just a baby. Planning on taking them when we go to visit this summer though!

  17. If you go to the museum’s facebook site, they list some of the specific lawsuits against the museum and who filed it (the people themselves, not just the lawyers).

    There is also a rant about lawsuits and why the cameras are needed. Apparantly, a rock fell at the museum. Several people contacted the museum and said they got hurt and were going to sue. Video showed that no one was near the rock when it fell. When the video was mentioned to those threatening to sue, they changed their stories.

    I’m glad the museum is going public with the stupid suits they are facing and explaining what these actually cost both them and their public.

  18. Looks like an awesome place to play!

  19. We went Friday night for their lights-out flashlight exploration time. My youngest (7) was having a great time on one of the outdoor slides. She even showed a group of 20-somethings how to get there because they couldn’t figure it out on their own! She was SO proud of herself for being able to do something they couldn’t! (They must not have been raised as FRK’s like mine.) After a half-dozen or so times down the slide, she tripped walking around to the stairs and got a pretty bad cut on one knee. Am I going to sue the museum? NO!!! It was an accident that could’ve happened ANYWHERE, even just walking down the sidewalk. PLUS they have an amazingly well-stocked first aid room — looked almost like a small clinic.

    One more thing about the first aid room: for those who have never been in there, it smells like CUPCAKES! The truly weird thing is that NOBODY seems to know WHY! The smell is wonderfully relaxing and the “mystery” got her so distracted that she hardly noticed me cleaning up the wound and getting it bandaged.

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