Monday, January 9, 2012

Celebration Crossing at the Indiana State Museum

Our first big adventure as a family of four last month took us to Celebration Crossing at the Indiana State Museum. My husband has fond memories of visiting this museum each year at Christmas when he was a kid (although it was in a different building at the time), meeting Santa and riding the train. So we did exactly that.

First, we warmed up by letting Big Arrow color and make a ring as part of an organized effort to bring holiday cheer to area hospitals, nursing homes, military overseas, etc.

Then it was time to meet the Big Guy. I feared getting the standard "kid screaming on Santa's lap picture." But my husband did an amazing job of convincing (typically timid) Big Arrow not to be scared. I think he even managed to whisper what he wanted for Christmas.

Then it was time to board the train. It's a simple series of carts that goes round and round a decorated holiday scene. Perfectly sized for little ones. (Meaning my 6' 4" husband had to stand on the sidelines with Little Arrow while I rode the train with Big Arrow. Sometimes it pays to be short!) I loved the kind staff and volunteers who so graciously entertain train riders.

Then we left the Celebration Crossing exhibit to check out the old fashioned department store holiday displays. Big Arrow was completely fascinated with the little Christmas scenes spread out behind the glass. He marveled at them for quite some time.

Our morning at the museum was full of festive fun, and it was particularly rewarding to hear my husband comment repeatedly on how much it reminded him of coming to the museum as a child.

If you're wondering where Little Arrow was for all this fun, you should know that I subscribe to the "don't mess with a sleeping baby" parenting philosophy. So this is how he took in all the museum's sights and sounds:

Celebration Crossing is closed for the holiday season, but as my husband can attest, you can count on it being back again next year.

If You Visit:
Indiana State Museum
650 W. Washington Street, Indianapolis
Open Monday-Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays, 11 a.m. to  p.m.
Admission is $7 for adults and $4 for children 3-12.
Insider Tips:
  • Signs will tell you that you can't take photos in Santa's house. While this is true, you don't have to buy one of the museum's photo packages. I was able to take photos from the entrance of the house (and was encouraged to do so).
  • While the Indiana State Museum is not a children's museum, the Amazing Maize exhibit that's at the museum through January 2013 is quite kid-friendly. I'll be writing about that soon.
Disclosure: I was provided with tickets to the Indiana State Museum. I was under no obligation to write about my time at the museum, and all opinions expressed are my own.


  1. So glad that you had a fun visit; we all love Santa and the train! There is no day so bad that a visit with The Big Guy doesn't make it all better :)
    P.S. Stay tuned for the Irsay exhibit opening 1/27/12, too! Eclectic items from Jim Irsay's personal collection...

  2. That's a great picture of Big Arrow on Santa's lap. He doesn't look even the least bit concerned. Seems like a fun outing, and next year Little Arrow will wake up long enough to ride (I hope!)

  3. Looks like a fantastic museum to visit!! And Little Arrow is adorable.....


  4. I'm pretty sure that you made the people at the nursing home happy, thank you for giving back to the elderly.