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Play Patio

Now open!

The outdoor Play Patio provides a space for messy creative fun. It represents the Museum's largest expansion since opening in Dover in 2008. The Play Patio offers opportunities for children to engage with materials that are challenging to offer inside the Museum, such as water, sand, paint, and clay.

Exhibit elements include:

  • Two sensory tables - Filled with changing materials, but currently has kinetic sand and tools for molding and creating designs in one, and water beads and hidden sea creatures in the other.
  • A water circuit wall - Use a hand pump to push water through sluices to create waterfalls, and fill cups to create a cascading circuit.
  • Oversized paint wall - Paint with washable paint on this double-sided wall.
  • Chalk spinner - Draw with chalk.
  • Water painting - The "Evaporation Zone" is a 3-sided wall for brush painting with water.
  • Color caster sculpture - Features colorful circular lenses shading the ground in different locations throughout the day as the sun moves across the sky. Designed for shadow, color and light play and encourages visitors to look through the colored lenses to see the world around them in a new light.
  • Tube Tones musical element - Series of connected PVC tubes that provide a musical element. Visitors can pound out a musical beat in the manner of the Blue Man Group.
  • Tables that will eventually be used for picnicking, but for now will be additional activity stations.

There is also an outdoor sink and hand-dryer for easy cleanup before you return to the exhibits inside the museum.

Access to the Play Patio is included with museum admission.

The Play Patio might be closed if there is inclement weather on the day of your visit.

Thank you to our Lead Donors:

Wdh A Kennebunk A

Abbie F. Moseley Charitable Trust

McIninch Foundation

Samuel P. Hunt Foundation

Roger R. and Theresa S. Thompson Endowment Fund

Additional funding was provided by companies who supported the project through the Community Development Finance Authority

Highland Hardwoods

Alexander Technology Group

Northway Bank

Newburyport Bank

First Seacoast Bank

D.F. Richard Energy

Stinson Associates

Leonne, McDonnell & Roberts P.A.

Seacoast Endodontic Associate

Thank you also to in-kind sponsors:

ARQ Architects

S.W. Cole Engineering Inc.

Norm & Amy Fracassa

City of Dover

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