Mid-Hudson Children's Museum, Poughkeepsie

#6 of 20 in Things to do in Poughkeepsie
Children’s Museum · Hidden Gem · Museum
Named “2017 Best Museum” by Hudson Valley Magazine, recipient of the 2015 Dutchess Tourism Family Entertainment Award of Distinction and the 2015 United Way Non-Profit Spotlight Award, the Mid-Hudson Children's Museum is the ideal destination for families with young children. With exhibits that focus on early literacy, art, early STEM, health and the local community, the museum welcomes over 75,000 visitors each year and provides an educationally rich environment through which children have the opportunity to develop foundational skills, to engage in purposeful play, and to develop interpersonal connections.

MISSION: To empower young children and their families.

VISION: A community in which each and every child develops curiosity, confidence and self-worth

MHCM is the ONLY children's museum in the Hudson River Valley between the larger New York City and Albany markets. In February 2016 MHCM opened The Science Center @ MHCM to advance early STEM education. The museum is located in the heart of the historic waterfront in Poughkeepsie, just steps away from the Poughkeepsie Metro-North train station, the Walkway Over the Hudson's Elevator, fabulous restaurants, and a new city park.

MHCM has three areas of programmatic focus that direct its work in exhibits and educational programs: school readiness, health and wellness, and community-building. The museum is dedicated to engaging and serving a diverse audience of families from all socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds and of all abilities and needs through special admission and membership programs.

The Mid-Hudson Children's Museum and its staff have been recognized with several major awards in the areas of leadership, community impact, and family engagement:

2018 “Best Birthday Parties” by Hudson Valley Magazine

2018 #1 in “Top 20 Places to Take Kids in the Hudson Valley” and 2018, 2017 and 2016 “Favorite Kid-Friendly Museum” in the Kids Out & About Hudson Valley Readers’ Poll

2017 “Best Museum” by Hudson Valley Magazine

2017 “Most Loved Place to Go” in Hulafrog's Parent Poll2015 ATHENA Leadership Award by the Chamber Foundation, Inc.

2015 Headliner Award for Leadership in Community and Organization by the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce

2015 Family Entertainment Award of Distinction by Dutchess Tourism

2015 Non-Profit Spotlight Award by the United Way of the Dutchess-Orange RegionThe Mid-Hudson Children's Museum is an independent 501(c)3 not-for-profit educational organization that is supported by admission and membership sales, program fees, donations, and grants. MHCM is a member of the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), the Association of Children's Museums (ACM), the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC), and the Museum Association of New York (MANY).

HISTORY. Founded in 1989 by a group of individuals in Poughkeepsie who believed that children in the Hudson Valley should have access to an innovative learning environment, the Mid-Hudson Children's Museum operated in donated spaces in the City of Poughkeepsie and then in the South Hills Mall for many years. In 2002, it moved to its current home at 75 North Water Street. The building is an historic mid-19th century industrial brick building that formerly housed Innis Dye Works.

The board of directors of MHCM is composed of business professionals who are passionate volunteers committed to creating a world-class museum for the community. The museum's current staff consists of fourteen employees. In fall 2012, the museum hired Lara Litchfield-Kimber as its new Executive Director. Since her arrival, the new executive director has worked with board, staff and community members to redefine the museum's strategic vision and to plan by identifying three strategic areas of focus: school readiness, health and wellness, and community building.
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Mid-Hudson Children's Museum reviews

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133 reviews
  • My grandchildren had a great time at this museum in Poughkeepsie. We spent about 3 hrs trying the various exhibits. Outside we had a great picnic lunch overlooking the Hudson River.  more »
  • Grandma and grandpa recently accompanied our grandson to his first five-year -old birthday party which was held at this museum. The exhibits and activities were so absorbing that he continued to play....  more »
  • My 2 year old loves this museum. I enjoy seeing him running around getting into different things and learning tons through play and exploration. When I go to this museum I make sure I make it an all day affair because a few hours just simply isn't enough time for the kiddos to explore it all. Highly recommend.
  • We had our daughter’s 3rd birthday party here on Saturday. It was hands down the best kids birthday ever!! Josie handled everything from the decorations to the set up to the cake and cleanup!! The kids all had the best time and all cried when we had to leave. Lol!! They did a great craft and the goody bags they gave out were amazing. There is no doubt we will do her fourth birthday here again!! Thanks again Josie and the Children’s Museum!!!!!!

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