Programs & Events

The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota is all about hands-on play and unique programs and events. Read below to learn more about what is happening in the Museum galleries. If you would like the Museum’s upcoming events delivered to your email address, click here to sign up for our mailing list!

The Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota reserves the right to change the programming plans. Please watch this website and Facebook page for updates.

New Museum Hours!

Open on Monday, January 21 (Martin Luther King Jr. Day): 9 am – 4:30 pm

  • Special Needs Accessibility Playtime – RESCHEDULED!

    Friday, March 1, 4:30 – 7:30 pm

    Tonight’s event has been rescheduled for Friday, March 1, due to the weather. We apologize for any inconvenience. Stay safe!

    Children with special needs or sensory challenges and their families are invited to a playdate at the Museum on Friday, January 18, during a time when fewer visitors will be present. Explore the Museum from 4:30 – 7:30 pm at no cost thanks to the sponsorship by Southern Minnesota Autism Coalition.

    To help prepare your child for this playtime, check out the  Museum’s social story: “A Trip to the Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota.”

  • Family Series: Viva Vivaldi – January 19

    Saturdays, 3:00 pm
    September 15 & November 17 2018
    January 18 & April 20, 2019

    Join Mankato Symphony Orchestra at the Children’s Museum for Viva Vivaldi, a series of four shows designed to introduce children to the delights of classical music. The show will be performed on Saturday afternoons and will feature musicians, actors, storytelling, and musical activities. Come to the Museum an hour ahead of the performance and play at no cost!

    Mark your calendars for September 15 and November 17, 2018 and January 19 and April 20 of next year.

    During the week of each Family Series show, join us at the Museum for a special program, Igniting STEM Learning Through the InterPLAY of Music-Science-Math, funded by the Xcel Energy Foundation. This program is included with daily admission or Museum membership.

  • No-School Day Programs: January 21

    On Mankato Area Public Schools no-school days, make your way to Cecil’s Imagineering Loft and see what we’ve planned!

    These drop-in activities are developed for children ages 6 and up and their adults and are included with daily admission or Museum membership.

    Monday, January 21
    10 am – 12 pm & 1 – 3 pm

    Eyes to the Sky Come celebrate the cosmic event, as we may be able to see a lunar eclipse and a supermoon! Join us in the Loft to explore magnetism, ultraviolet light, and different perspectives.

  • Trivia Night – January 25

    Friday, January 25, 2019, 6:00 – 10:00 pm
    Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, Hotel and Conference Center, 1900 Premier Dr., Mankato

    It’s time for Trivia Night! Join the Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota for a night of fun and games. Get your team together or join a new one, test your knowledge, enjoy delicious food, and support the Museum!

    Tickets are $40 per person or $320 for a table of eight. Tickets include games and dinner. Buy your tickets today!

    Thank you to our sponsors:


    Interested in sponsoring the event? Contact Kaaren Grabianowski with questions!


  • Barnes & Noble Bookfair – January 26

    Saturday, January 26, 12 – 2 pm
    Barnes and Noble at River Hills Mall, Mankato

    Join the Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota staff at Barnes and Noble River Hills Mall and explore KIBO and Cubelets robots in a winter wonderland during a bookfair that supports the Museum! Present a voucher or mention the Children’s Museum of Southern Minnesota prior to making a purchase and the Museum will receive a percentage of the net sale! Vouchers are accepted through January 31 and can be used for online purchases.

    Print a single voucher or a handful to share.

  • What’s in the AgLab?

    Sheep to Sweater
    January 2019

    Don’t be baashful about coming into the AgLab to check out this exhibit! Sheep’s wool has some special properties and is used for many, many things. Learn about the journey wool takes after it is shorn from the sheep, and how it is made into a sweater.

  • Toddler Wednesday

    Wednesdays, 10:00 am
    Please arrive early to reserve your spot.

    January 2
    Dance Party: Happy New Year!

    January 9
    Healthy Habits: Moving more and eating better are among the top resolutions made at the start of any new year. Let’s incorporate some fun ways to move our bodies more and eat healthy snacks. This program is developed in partnership with Mayo Clinic Health System.

    January 16
    Music Makers: Let’s make instruments and dance to the beat of our own drums.

    January 23
    Our today’s guests are coming from Pediatric Therapy Services

    January 30
    Groundhog Day: Light and shadow play in honor of the upcoming Groundhog Day.

  • STEAM in the Loft

    Thursdays, 3:00 – 6:00 pm
    Saturdays, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm & 1:00 – 3:00 pm
    Sundays, 1:00 – 3:00 pm

    Climb into Cecil’s Imagineering Loft and enjoy STEAM programming on Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. These programs are designed with children age 6 and beyond in mind, but everyone is welcome to play and learn in the Loft!

    January 3, 5, 6, 10, 12, and 13
    Are You Game?
    Imagine, design, and build your own board games and puzzles.

    January 17, 19, and 20
    Exploring Energy with Music and Dance
    Winter weather makes us move and dance! In the Loft, we’ll be dreaming up dance moves and making musical compositions on the magnetic wall. This program is funded by the Xcel Energy Foundation.

    January 24, 26, and 27
    Fun with Felt Friends: Sewing and Collaging
    Climb into the Loft to create a felt friend or creature, then craft a story about them to share with others.

  • Tabletop Activities

    Available daily, Tuesday through Sunday, in the Kato Engineering Explorers’ Lab

    January 2 – 6
    Sand Snowflakes – Use a pipette and design a snowflake with glue, then shake sand over to add a texture to your creation.

    January 8 – 13
    Peppermint Playdough – Practice rolling, kneading, and cutting shapes in deliciously-scented playdough.

    January 15 – 20
    Move to the Music – 
    Navigate a path with clues for ways to move, all while listening to some tunes. This activity is sponsored by Xcel Energy Foundation.

    January 22 – 27
    Stringing and Lacing – 
    Practice lacing a wooden block and stringing beads on a line.

  • Bookmobile Visits

    Wednesdays, 2:00 – 3:00 pm

    The North Mankato Taylor Library Bookmobile will stop at the Museum every Wednesday from 2:00 – 3:00 pm. Check out some new materials, or return any area library books. During the Bookmobile’s visit, Amy will come into the Museum for a storytime in one of the galleries.

  • Baby Café

    Thursdays, 12:30 – 2:30 pm

    New mothers and mothers-to-be interested in breastfeeding are encouraged to visit the Mankato Area Baby Café. Baby Café is a national network of breastfeeding drop-ins, combining breastfeeding information with a relaxed, informal environment where mothers can chat and learn about breastfeeding from skilled practitioners and each other. Mankato Area Baby Café is made possible by Mayo Clinic Health System.

    For more information, call 507.594.2967.