Went to the Mayborn Museum in Waco today, part of which is a “discovery center” for kids (“of all ages”), after reading reviews that some people liked it better than the McKenna Museum we recently visited in New Braunfels.
It was an uneventful trip; we arrived in Waco in time for lunch at Burger King — I think it was the same one we had trouble with in 2007. At least this time we were served, though it was pretty slow. I’m sure the only reasons it’s still in business are (1) right on I-35, and (2) proximity to Baylor University.
The Mayborn Museum itself was beautiful on the outside and well-appointed inside. It did not look like a children’s museum at all, more like an actual museum or cultural arts center or even a superchurch, based on the architecture, expansive size of the rooms. Once we got past the lobby area and into the “discovery center” part, it looked more like a former classroom/lab building. Each room was about the size of a classroom, and most of them had industrial-type cabinets and counters along one wall, each with a sink, as if they’d once held labs there.
But there were plenty of things for children to play with and learn from. Our kids, being very young, most enjoyed the first two rooms we entered, which were basically toddler play rooms — and the only two rooms that resembled the McKenna museum at all. The rest seemed made for older children, with science experiments and information. But there was just enough to keep little ones interested most of the time.
RLF commented regularly: “I like this children’s museum” and “I like this place a lot!” but later told us she liked the other one better.
My wife and I agreed that the New Braunfels children’s museum was certainly better for toddlers, but that this Waco one would be better for older kids (maybe 6-12). They cost about the same, but the Waco one is half the distance. And an annual family pass is quite a bit cheaper for this one.
After a nearly three-hour stay, we headed home.
I watered the front lawn in the evening.