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Community Spotlight: Explore More Discovery Museum

Highlighting the local children’s museum that allows families to come together and learn.
Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 12:19 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - What started as a grassroots organization in 2002 has turned into a centerpiece in Downtown Harrisonburg. Kids and families come from all over to play and explore, hands on.

“We believe children learn best by hands on, authentic experiences,” said Lisa Shull, executive director of the Explore More Discovery Museum.

Three floors filled with 15 hands-on experiences geared for kids two through 12, allowing them to explore their world through the sense of touch.

“We try to have multi-sensory opportunities available for them,” said Shull. “If someone tells you something, you’re likely not going to remember it as if you’ve experienced it, manipulated it, and enjoyed the experience.”

Experiences that include learning to count money, building from scratch, and even try your hand at being on the news.

“I think this just gives families a place to go,” said Shull. “They know it’s safe, they know their children are learning. It really is a source of community pride.”

The non-profit adapted quickly once the coronavirus pandemic hit. Staff and volunteers shifted gears temporarily, but are slowly moving back to normal. They’re open for reservations to limit the size of crowds.

“A lot of our core audience can’t be vaccinated at this time,” said Shull. “Some parents are happy to be here, they feel our safety procedures are great, and they’re okay with it. Some are going to be a little more hesitant and maybe take their time coming back. We totally understand that.”

The Explore More Discovery Museum relies on a large chunk of their funding to come from fundraising, sponsorships, and donations.

For more information on upcoming events and about the museum, visit its website at iexploremore.com.

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