Portland Children’s Museum
Unfortunately, this local treasure permanently closed in 2021. Located next to the Oregon Zoo in Washington Park, it was a primary destination for family fun and learning. OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry) is probably the closest family friendly venue still open in Portland, Oregon that reflects the past joys of the closed Portland Children’s Museum. The below is our original guide to the Portland Children’s Museum. We hope there is a new version of this cherished venue in Portland’s future.
Other Washington Park Attractions
Washington Park is the Home of the Oregon Zoo, World Forestry Center, Miller Hall, Portland Japanese Garden, Hoyt Arboretum, International Rose Test Garden, and more than 12 miles of forested trails. There are multiple attractions along the hike including the Oregon Holocaust Memorial, Sacajawea Statue, Bamboo Garden, Wedding Meadow, Redwood Observation Deck, Winter Garden, Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial, playgrounds, sports fields, and courts, and even an Archery Range. So there are still plenty of reasons to plan your visit to Washington Park!
Portland Children’s Museum Guide
The Portland Children’s Museum is hands-down one of the most popular places for fun things to do with kids in Portland. It’s a virtual fantasy land for children! Fun activities, adventures, and playgrounds abound in this vibrant museum made just for kids! Adults will have fun, too, because there are few things more delightful than watching children explore their surroundings while laughing and playing. Check the videos below for just a few examples, and we hope these kids enjoying the Portland Children’s Museum will bring a smile to your face.
Birthday parties are a big hit at the museum too. You can book your child’s birthday party and have one of the most memorable parties ever, without trashing your home.
Portland Children’s Museum Mission Statement
The mission of Portland Children’s Museum is to inspire imagination, creativity and the wonder of learning in children and adults by inviting moments of shared discovery.
Portland Children’s Museum History
Portland Children’s Museum was founded by visionary Dorothea Lensch in 1946 as part of Portland Parks and Recreation. The Museum is now the sixth oldest childrens museum in the country, and each year the Museum welcomes more than 245,000 children from birth to age ten and their caregivers.
Opened as the “Junior Museum and Adventure House, the Museum’s first home was the Jacob Kamm House, built in 1861 by Kamm, a Swiss steamboat captain and financier. The 14-room mansion stood on five acres just west of downtown Portland where Lincoln High School is today.
Visiting the Portland Children’s Museum
Seniors 55+: $7
Birth-1 year: Free
4015 SW Canyon Road
Portland, OR 97221
Museum Exhibits and Current Events Calendar
There are always tons of fun exhibits at the museum: Kids will have a ball playing in the dig pits, clay studio, waterworks, treehouse adventure, grocery store, and more!
Museum Membership and Additional Information
Enjoy unlimited museum visits and these additional benefits of membership:
- Museum Store discounts: 10-20%
- Invitations to exclusive parties like our Halloween Hootenanny
- Discounts on camps/classes, workshops and special events
- Six newsletters a year delivered to your mailbox
- Free parking at Washington Park
- Member Thursdays: Special events for members, and no groups are
scheduled. More space to play!
Field Trips to the Museum – Camps and Classes
Messy Toddler Fun!
For Ages 1-3 – Introduce your 1-3 year old to goo, texture, “mud” and more. Be prepared for sloppy playful mess, and leave the cleaning to us! Each month: $22 members/$24 non-members.
Paint and Play
For Ages 2-4 – Our most popular class Paint and Play is for toddlers age 2-4 and their grown-ups. Join in the creative exploration of texture, color and tools in a joyous and playful setting ($22/members $24/members).
For Ages 3.5-5 – For holiday shopping time, or just a little “ahhh” relaxation, enjoy our December camp options. You can drop off your child for a day or two of camps or sign-up for a full session at a discount.
Art at Home
All Ages. – Our studio team guides you through simple art activities you can replicate at home. Learn tips and tricks to avoid a mess and work with supplies that won’t break the bank, but engage you and your child.
All Ages. – Watch as our fabulous studio artists change the shape of clay with their hands at the Potter’s Wheel. Take a turn and slip your fingers into the moving clay as you throw a small cup or bowl!
All Ages. Glaze your own creation, or choose from our selection of bisque items such as tiles, picture frames, plates, mugs and bowls. Glazed items available in one week: check in with the box office to pick-up your item. Prices start at $3 per item.
Portland Children’s Museum
4015 SW Canyon Rd
Portland, OR 97221
Looking for more museums and ideas for things to do in Portland? Visit our Portland Attractions page.
SW Portland Neighborhood Map
Click on a Portland neighborhood for the full guide.