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WinnePLAYgo, outdoor space, opens at Children’s Museum

Posted on: Jun 25th, 2020

Fond du Lac, Wisconsin – 6/25/2020 – For the first time in months, the Children’s Museum of Fond du Lac (CMFDL) expects to welcome happy visitors beginning Friday, June 26. Focusing on safety, fun and financial sustainability, an incremental and flexible reopening approach will used, starting with WinnePLAYgo. 

“We are excited to hear the giggles and the joyful sounds of kids playing once again,” comments Andrea Welsch, CMFDL’s executive director. “Our children’s lives have been filled with so much uncertainty and parents are looking for ways to fill their summer with happy memories.  We hope returning to a favorite, familiar space that was built to foster creativity, health and connectedness will create a sense of normalcy.”

WinnePLAYgo, originally built with financial support from the Agnesian Hospital Foundation and Agnesian Healthcare (now a member of SSM Health) encompasses 10,000 square feet of outdoor space and features five shanty-like structures, tricycles, tractors, picnic tables, musical spaces and outdoor games.  The highlight of the space is its gardens, including seven raised garden beds that families can harvest and enjoy, a butterfly garden and Monarch Way-Station and a fairy garden for children to manipulate.

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Museum visitor enjoys the butterfly garden in WinnePLAYgo, the outdoor play space at the Children’s Museum of Fond du Lac, set to open Friday, June 26.  For more information, visit cmfdl.org/visit/summer2020

According to the Association of Children’s Museums, approximately half of children’s museums have an outdoor play space. “We are fortunate to not only have an outdoor space, but for it to be in a location that can be accessed without entering the building.  Most children’s museums in the state and across the country are still closed due to the extensive modifications that are needed for indoor facilities and concern about the virus”, stated Tony Renning, CMFDL’s Board President. 

WinnePLAYgo, will reopen on Friday, June 26th with expanded health and safety measures, including a 25 guest count capacity and modified schedule of Tuesday – Friday, from 9:00am to 1:00pm through August 21 (subject to change based on demand and staffing resources).  Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday will be reserved as “Members Only” days, however any household can become a member simply by visiting CMFDL’s website.  This is being done as a token of gratitude to CMFDL’s membership base, which was largely very supportive during its mandated closure, and also as a measure to enjoy a “contactless” check-in.  Friday’s will be “Reservations ONLY” and open to the General Public or Members who are seeking a private gathering space.  

CMFDL has thoroughly planned and implemented cleaning, social distancing, and safety procedures to protect the health and wellbeing of guests, volunteers, and staff members. “To ensure we are following the highest standards, we built our reopening plan with guidance from a specially formed Task Force, our Board of Directors, local health department officials, fellow local attractions, leading children’s museums across the country and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines for parks and recreational,” said Welsch. 

Hand sanitizer will be available to guests prior to entering and CDC guidelines will be reviewed. Guests are encouraged to bring their own hand sanitizer, wipes, sunscreen and any other supplies needed to safely enjoy the summer outdoors – including picnic snacks. 

Additional information found on CMFDL’s website at cmfdl.org.