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On February 22, 2018, we attended the grand opening of Arcadia Kids Museum and had the opportunity of getting a sneak peek at this new fun place for kids! Here is my honest Arcadia Kids Museum Review!
Location and Best Place to Park
The Arcadia Kids Museum is located at the Oviedo Mall in Oviedo, Florida, in the Sears F Wing. The Sears closed a while back, so do not park there. If you enter Oviedo Mall through the food court, make a right and Arcadia Kids Museum will be all the way at the very end on the east side of the mall.
The price for daily admission is $12.95 for children ages 12 months and older, and adult admission is $8.95. (Yes, the supervising adult must pay too!) The admission price includes the play area and any activities or events scheduled on the day of visit, excluding any special member-only events.
For families interested in coming to Arcadia Kids Museum more often, they do offer three membership tiers (up to a family of four):
- Unlimited Weekdays – $120 per year (weekdays only, additional members $19.95 each)
- Unlimited Weekends – $170 per year (weekends only, additional members $29.95 each)
- Super Member – $199 per year
Members also enjoy exclusive events, and Super Members get four additional guest passes per year plus a 10% discount at the gift shop and for birthday parties.
The “Museum” Exhibits
Parents/guardians must sign a liability waiver before their children can enter the play area. I brought my son and niece, and they had a good time exploring all the exhibits.
Arcadia Kids Museum consists of eight hands-on exhibits where children can play:
- Construction House
- Science Lab
- Grocery Store
- Veterinary Office
- Gas Station
- Bubble Area
- Water Station
There is also a wiggle climber and ball pit where children can burn off energy! I noticed that is where most of the kids were, especially in the ball pit area. Also, only seven exhibits were open because the bubble area was still under construction.
In their website, Arcadia Kids Museum states it is geared toward children between the ages of 12 months to 11 years. I would say this is pretty accurate. The museum is not really ideal for infants or smaller children because the height of many of the exhibits was much too high, such as the water station.
My son favored the “diner” area and spent a lot of time pretend-playing in the “kitchen,” cooking the food and bringing it out to the table, then pretending to eat. Of course, I had to play along with him and help him get up onto the “diner” table as it was adult-sized, as were the bar stools.
As far as the toys, they were all over the place. Perhaps because it was the grand opening day and there were bunches of little people all over the place, but I would find toys from the “grocery” (such as plastic apples) in the construction play area. There are bins where parents are supposed to put the dirty toys once their child is finished playing with them, but I am not sure if every parent was doing that.
For the adults, there were only four or five benches to sit on. I talked to a few mothers with infants, who were disappointed that there were not enough benches to sit on while they watched their older children play.
Should You Take Your Child Here?
Arcadia Kids Museum offers many exhibits for children to enjoy. Due to the height of some of the exhibits, such as the “diner” barstools and height of the water station, I would say it is not extremely toddler- or infant-friendly, but taller/older kids might enjoy it better.
Being inside the mall makes it convenient for a nice half-day out. We spent the morning playing in the museum, then headed to food court for lunch.
The BIGGEST downside to Arcadia Kids Museum is the price.
The museum requires children to be accompanied and supervised by an adult at all times, so charging an admission fee for the adult is the deal-breaker for me. You are paying for a child and also an adult. In fact, it is not really the standard for indoor play spaces around here to charge admission for the supervising adult.
For example, My Little Kids Town in Orlando allows up to two adults free of charge for every child!
Arcadia Kids Museum states they encourage the parents to pretend-play with their children. Personally, I take my son to play areas so that he can “socialize” with other kids his age. He sees me every day, so he is used to me, and I want him to explore the world with children his age, playing with toys together and using their imaginations to go on little adventures.
In addition to the above issue, I feel that the price simply does not justify the play area, which is cute, but really small. Even the annual passes at the Central Florida Zoo or The Orlando Science Center are cheaper, and there is so much more to do at both of those places.
My kid can spend opening to closing at the Science Center without getting bored, while I think the entire Arcadia Kids Museum can be experienced in under two hours.
It is still a cool place for kids and my one-year-old had fun for sure, but there are much better options for play areas in Central Florida and I probably will not be returning to Arcadia Kids Museum anytime soon.
I hope you enjoyed my Arcadia Kids Museum Review! What fun places in Orlando does your family like visit?
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