Monsters Are Taking Over the Museum this Summer

A batch of friendly monsters is on its way to Minnesota Children’s Museum. 

We tried to tell them the museum’s three floors of fun are for people, not monsters. But they have their big hearts and furry faces set on visiting Minnesota’s biggest and best children’s museum. 

What’s more, they don’t want to spend just a day or two. They’re coming for the entire summer! 

Embracing the old saying, “If you can’t beat them, join them,” the museum’s exhibit designers set out to create fun ways for people and monsters to play together. And since these monsters are so caring, they’re making sure every experience supports the well-being of children and families by strengthening social and emotional learning through play. 

We’re pretty much turning over the fourth floor to the monsters this summer. Young humans and their grownups will explore new monster-friendly experiences in the Special Exhibit Gallery, as well as encounter monster pals in Our World, The Studio and The Backyard. 

Here’s a preview of what we have in store for monsters and people this summer. 

In the Gallery

Obstacle Course

This one-of-a-kind course is full of big and small physical challenges, as well as places for big and small acts of courage. Challenges include climbing up and over a wall, squeezing through giant foam rollers, navigating a wavy floor, balancing on slime boards, moving across a netted wall, traversing a wobbly ladder and jumping across a puddle of slime. Visitors can tackle the entire obstacle course in one go or step away and follow a quieter path if they need to.

Feed the Monster

Monsters get very hungry, and this one is no exception! Visitors feed the monster by loading food (foam noodles) into two chutes and work together to move the food up toward the giant monster’s mouth. Uh oh, the monster is going sneeze... Achoo—out come the noodles! But the monster is still hungry, so the cycle starts all over again. 

Monster Mash Dance Floor

Did you know that monsters love to dance? And that dancing can be a great way to relieve stress? The LED dance floor invites visitors to unleash their inner monster through creative movement. Visitors can mix and match various costume pieces to become monsters themselves and they move around, dance and shake out their furry sillies. 

Tot Spot

Surrounded by a low wall and soft barrier, the Tot Spot is a great area for our youngest visitors to strengthen their confidence and coordination skills. Uneven foam surfaces encourage crawling and walking, while adjacent low boards create opportunities to practice balancing skills. Crawl-through tubes give tots a place to explore while mirrors along the back wall encourage self-awareness, an important element of healthy social and emotional development. 

Beyond the Gallery

Since monsters are… well, monsters, they don’t always stay where they should. In addition to filling the Special Exhibit Gallery, don’t be surprised to find monster activities throughout the museum’s fourth floor.

Scream Booth

Screaming can be a cathartic way to release pent up emotions. This sound-proof booth invites visitors to come in and have a good scream—monster style! Visitors wave their arms, clench their fists, stomp their feet – whatever they need to do to get that scream out. 

Monster Sound Machines

What do emotions sound like? Sound machines straight out of Dr. Frankenstein’s laboratory invite visitors to create sounds that represent emotions. The machines are covered in switches, dials and cranks that emit sounds when activated.  

Monster-fied Galleries

Expect to find monster-themed activities and props in some of the galleries in the museum. Keep an eye out for updates in Our World such as monster pets in the vet clinic and monster-themed snacks in the food stand. Visitors can dream up and build their own monster friend in The Studio and launch mud at monster targets in The BackyardAnd if you look closely, you’re likely to spot even more monster friends hanging out in other spaces around the museum as well. 


Monsters on Summer Vacation opens June 8, 2024 and runs through Labor Day. Mark your calendars now because this is one monster extravaganza you won’t want to miss!

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