Response to COVID-19
Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab have taken the preventative measure of closing as of March 14, 2020, to help slow the spread of the coronavirus. Updates will be posted below.
July 21, 2020
As you know, the health and wellness of our visitors, members and staff are our top priority. Social distancing guidelines have had a tremendous impact on the creative, hands-on learning experiences that are a hallmark of the Children's Museum and MuseumLab, and more recent restrictions on indoor gatherings have further impacted our ability to return to any version of normal Museum operations.
For the last several months, we have been evaluating options that will best allow us to reopen safely. At this time, we are planning to reopen in January 2021.
We are collaborating with approximately 30 different arts organizations in the region to develop standards, share plans and review successful reopening procedures to ensure that we all feel confident and safe when you return to the museum.
As you know, the state of the world is constantly evolving, and today's plans may not be tomorrow's plans. We appreciate your patience and support as we develop our reopening plans in accordance with the current guidelines of federal, state and local health authorities.
We are working hard to create new ways to safely interact with our members and visitors when the Children’s Museum and MuseumLab reopen to the public. This includes enhanced sanitizing procedures, with focus on high-touch areas, as well as increased hand sanitizer stations and plexiglass barriers.
Other changes include updates to our staffing model. Unfortunately, we had to make the heartbreaking decision to permanently separate from our furloughed staff. However, as we prepare for reopening, we do plan on hiring back staff in phases as we gradually reopen.
We plan to open with two brand new exhibits and some very exciting updates:
· Emotions at Play with Pixar's Inside Out
· The Kindness Gallery in the former Attic space
· Gymlacium will be opening in MuseumLab
· Maker spaces will be updated
· The Garage is being refurbished, and there will be new experiences throughout the entire first floor
· We’ll still have some of your favorite exhibits like Waterplay and The Nursery
We miss you and look forward to the time when we can play, create and learn together in person.
June 6, 2020
As Allegheny and surrounding counties enter the Green Phase of Governor Wolf's Process to Reopen Pennsylvania plan, we wanted to send an update on Children's Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab.
The health and wellness of the Children’s Museum and MuseumLab’s visitors, members, staff and the community are our top priority.
Due to the requirements of operating under the Green Phase and their impact on the creative, hands-on learning experiences that are such a hallmark of the Museum, we will not be opening for general public visits, programs, events or birthdays parties at this time.
You are likely to see other businesses, and some museums and cultural institutions, reopen now or in the coming weeks. We are collaborating with approximately 30 different museums and arts organization in the region to develop standards, share plans and review what is working and what should be adjusted as staff and visitors return. Each institution is evaluating reopening under on its own schedule, and within its own unique operational needs, to ensure that you feel confident and safe when you return to their venue.
We are working hard to create new ways to safely interact with our members and visitors, both from home and when the Children’s Museum and MuseumLab reopen to the public.
We miss you and look forward to the time when we can play, create and learn together in person. Until that time, here are some ways to bring some of the experiences and exploration of the Museum to your home:
May 15, 2020
An update on the Children's Museum and MuseumLab:
First off, we miss playing, learning and being creative with you in person! Though we are closed, we are still working hard to create new ways to learn and safely interact with our members and visitors, both from home and when the museums are able to reopen to the public. We also strive to be a valuable partner and resource to those who work with or on behalf of children, youth and families in the community. The Museum will remain closed for the time being. Most of our staff continues to work from home, while some exhibit design staff can return to the museum to work on exciting exhibit updates, including installing the Kindness Gallery, a new exhibit about kindness and empathy in the former Attic space.
We appreciate that you stay in touch via our social media channels at @pghkids and our website, www.pittsburghkids.org. We hope you stay healthy, and care well for each other. Here are some ways to inspire joy, creativity and curiosity at home:
April 1, 2020
Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab are preparing for a longer term closure of the museum due to COVID-19, during which time we will adjust our staff to support core operations.
The Museum will be moving to a model where we retain a core staff that are working full time. We anticipate keeping the majority of our full-time workers in place. Some part-time and full-time positions are being furloughed with the intention of bringing them back when we fully reopen.
The health and wellness of our community and guests continues to be our top priority, and we have taken steps to plan for an extended closure of our physical space. We are also expanding our online resources for children and families to experience joy, creativity and curiosity while they are together at home. Everyone can access these Museum at Home resources at www.pittsburghkids.org/museumathome.
March 13, 2020
Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab have taken the preventative measure of closing the museums due to the COVID-19 virus at the end of the day today. There are no documented cases of staff or visitor exposure to the virus at the museum. We are taking this step with the utmost concern for the health and wellness of our guests and staff.
During this time, we will be taking the opportunity to deep clean all areas of the museum. There will be a limited number of staff in the building for ongoing continuity operations but the majority of the staff will work remotely. We will evaluate this decision on a day-by-day basis, and provide updates to our members, guests, staff and the community as the situation changes.
This decision was informed by the recommendation of PA Governor Tom Wolf to limit large group activity and close the schools in Pennsylvania, as well as discussions with public health experts, government organizations, peer institutions and our staff and leadership teams.
We have notified groups, including field trips, weddings and events and we will provide refunds for any activities that cannot be rescheduled.
Stay tuned for educational resources for children and families that can be done online or at home to help them learn and be creative during this time.
Thank you for helping us keep Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab safe for everyone.
March 12, 2020
On March 12, 2020, PA Governor Tom Wolf and PA Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine made the recommendation that large gatherings, events and conferences of 250 individuals or more be suspended. Therefore, the Children’s Museum is choosing to limit large group activity at the Museum, including field trips and other large groups, starting Friday, March 13. This will be in effect for the month of March.
While we have decided to take this preventative step for large groups of more than 250, our other operations are ongoing and we remain open for families and individual visitors. We are assessing how we will handle large group visitation in April. We are working directly with the canceled groups to reschedule, and if necessary provide refunds.
Please follow our updates on the website and via social media for the latest news. For group visitation questions, please email email@example.com or call 412.322.5058 and ask for Matt Winning.
March 10, 2020
Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and MuseumLab consider the health and safety of our children and adult visitors our top priority.
Our team has been monitoring the latest developments related to the coronavirus and COVID-19 and we are following the recommendations of health and safety officials at the local, state and federal level to best protect the health and wellness of our guests and staff.
We have updated our operational procedures to increase the frequency and intensity of cleaning across the Museum campus. This includes:
- Cleaning before the Museum opens, throughout the day and after we close
- Using hard surface disinfecting wipes on railings, door knobs, light switches, bathroom surfaces and Cafe chairs. Please note that treated surfaces will remain wet after treatment to allow for maximum effectiveness.
- Making more frequent rounds to check soap and paper towel levels
- Updating bathroom motion detectors to enable hands-free operation of bathroom lights
- Increasing the number of hand sanitizer stations throughout our facilities
Tips for you and your kids to stay healthy
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (see the video below for a kid-friendly lesson)
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
- Try to limit handshakes, hugs and unnecessary touching
- Practice good respiratory hygiene – this includes coughing and sneezing into a tissue or your bent elbow
- If you are feeling unwell, seek medical treatment