Welcoming all children
for 40 years
The  current Miami Children’s Museum under construction with support beams holding up the concrete walls.

Museum History

Miami Children’s Museum was established in 1983 as the Miami Youth Museum as a 2,000 square foot facility located in a shopping center in West Kendall. Over the past 40 years, the Museum has relocated and expanded several times in response to both public and private support and involvement. Since opening our 56,500 square foot state-of-the-art facility near Downtown Miami in fall of 2003, Miami Children’s Museum has experienced tremendous growth and hosted over 5 million guests. Annual visitation has reached 445,000 in recent years. Miami Children’s Museum is among the largest children’s museums in the United States and fulfills a critical role in our community by infusing arts, culture and our community into interactive learning experiences.  The Museum’s central location on Watson Island provides access for many under served and low-income populations.

Miami Children’s Museum serves as a model for children’s museum in the 21st century by mobilizing the community and collaborating with civic leaders and organizations to address the needs of children and their families. We partner with other children’s museums, cultural institutions and community and national organizations to highlight topics such as literacy, science, culture, history, careers, environment, and much more through arts programming.

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The Museum has a long track record of providing excellent arts and culture educational programming for the citizens of South Florida. Past public recognition, awards and honors include being:

  • MiChiMu named “The Best Designed Museum” in Florida by Architectural Digest Magazine in August 2018
  • Named “Best Museum in Miami” by the Miami New Times and the “Best Children’s Museum” by South Florida Parenting Magazine;
  • Awarded the Beacon Council’s prestigious Education Award;
  • Named one of the “Top 10 Children’s Museums in the World” by VIATOR Travel blog;
  • Referred to as “undoubtedly one of the most innovative and interesting children’s museums in America” by Foxnews.com.
  • Awarded Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce NOVO award recognizing the innovative work of the Museum’s Sensory Saturday program that has made a difference in the lives of the people it serves
  • Honored as one of the Top 50 Women Led Businesses in the State of Florida, for the past five consecutive years.

Since its inception, Miami Children’s Museum has provided an inclusive environment where all children are welcome to play, learn, imagine, create and explore through hands-on interaction with the exhibits, activities and performances. In addition to being an early childhood education expert, the Museum has long been recognized as a leader in South Florida for providing programming for children with special needs. Since July 2012, Miami Children’s Museum’s Sensory Friendly Saturdays, a monthly program for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) has garnered state-wide recognition and attracted families from across the state to visit during the event when the Museum is open exclusively to these children and their families.  Response from children with ASD and their parents/caregivers who have visited during this time when there are fewer crowds and while the Museum’s lighting and sounds are lowered to provide a more sensory-friendly experience has been extremely positive.

Miami Children’s Museum has a long history of providing hands-on arts, music and theatrical programming and activities to schools and centers for special needs children. A few examples of past collaborators that have requested the Museum’s outreach activities for populations with special needs include The Sagemont School, Autism Services Council, The Arc of South Florida and Arc Broward.  In addition, the Museum has provided programming for Miami Lighthouse for the Blind and has been selected as an exhibition site for VSA Florida art exhibitions.

The Potamkin Family Building at the Miami Children's Museum.

Board of Directors