Let’s take a journey…to Egypt. Instead of traveling across the Atlantic Ocean, the land of mystery and wonder can be found at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
Indy museum officials connected and shared ideas with the First Lady of Egypt, Suzanne Mubarak, for the creation of a children’s museum in her name located in Cairo, Egypt. Indianapolis’ reward – the Tutankhamun: The Golden King and the Great Pharaohs exhibit.
“We’ve seen literally tens of thousands of folks go through the exhibit since it opened. We see families with very young children to grandparents going in. We have something for everyone here,” said Dr. Jeff Patchen, president and CEO of The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
Enter the exhibit and you’ll find yourself in a room that’s preparing to open your imagination. After a short preview narrated by actor Harrison Ford, the doors slowly open and you’re led into galleries full of mystery, beauty and surprising revelations about the great Pharaohs of Egypt.
The exhibition includes treasures and artifacts representing notable Pharaohs along with a chronological look at Egyptian kings and queens before Tut’s reign. The storyline focuses on the grandeur of the pharaohs, their function in the earthly and divine worlds and the importance of kingship to the Egyptian people.
Once spectators brush up on their ancient Egyptian history, they enter the replica of King Tutankhamun’s burial chambers just as British archaeologist Howard Carter and his financier Lord Carnarvon discovered it in 1922. Four galleries are devoted to King Tut corresponding to the four rooms of his nearly intact tomb.
The exhibition features 50 objects from the tomb of Tutankhamun including his gold sandals and a beautifully adorned canopic jar that withheld his mummified internal organs.
The exhibit has beautiful jewelry, pottery, artifacts and more, however Patchen states this $8 million, 13,000 square-foot international exhibit is developmentally for middle elementary student and above. An audio guide is available for a deeper, more personal history lesson.
“There are over 150 pieces from ancient Egypt. There are wonderful artifacts set into the relationship between King Tut and all of the 30 dynasties of Pharaohs who ruled Egypt. It’s fantastic,” said Patchen.
Once museum goers have completed the exhibit, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis urges people to check out “Take Me There: Egypt.”
Through this exhibit, families can get a more modern look at life in Egypt. This staying exhibit is very hands-on and is the perfect place for kids to learn about Egyptian city and rural life and take part in family traditions and celebrations. There’s also arts and crafts, a make believe marketplace and a look into modern Egypt’s economy.
“Take Me There: Egypt is a powerful, invaluable opportunity allowing millions of families to feel they have left Indianapolis and are actually participating in the daily life of a different culture. The exhibit will foster understanding in a way that goes far beyond textbooks, television or even the Internet,” said John Lechleiter, chairman of the board, president and chief operating officer for Eli Lilly and Company.
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis says families can play a trivia game to test their knowledge of Egyptian families, play “I Spy” as they examine Egyptian currency or visit the local herbalist and play a computer game in which they must prescribe a remedy.
Discover the historical importance and modern-day environmental challenges of the Nile River, and find out about important Egyptian sites such as the Avenue of the Sphinxes and an archeological site in Sohag, Egypt.
Make sure you check out Tutankhamun: The Golden King and the Great Pharaohs at the world’s largest children’s museum before it heads to Toronto, Canada.
“We focus on real science, real humanities, real art in a fun, inviting hands-on environment here at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis,” said Patchen.
For more information, call (317) 334-3322 or visit www.childrensmuseum.org.
This young prince, named Tutankhaten, ascended the throne (around 1333 BCE) while still a child. He restored the traditional gods and re-established Thebes as the religious capital and Memphis as the administrative center. He also changed his name to Tutankhamun in order to direct attention to the restoration of the pantheon and the god Amun at its head. King Tut reigned for about nine years.
CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF INDIANAPOLIS INFO
3000 N. Meridian St.
Indianapolis, IN 46208
SPECIAL EXHIBIT HOURS FOR TUTANKHAMUN: THE GOLDEN KING AND THE GREAT PHARAOHS
Now – Oct. 25, 2009
Friday – Saturday: 9 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Sunday – Thursday: 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Final two weeks of the exhibit: (daily) 10 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
First and Third Thursday of each month: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Three upcoming adult-only evenings will provide a different gallery atmosphere on Aug. 20, Sep. 17 and Oct. 15. Entrance to the exhibition is $25 between 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., including a cocktail. The exhibition and bar will remain open until 9 p.m.