This past month, we took a morning with the grandparents to visit the Pueblo Grande Museum. It’s a fascinating combination of ruins, interactive indoor exhibits, and many special programs that show the way of life for the ancient Hohokam people that use to live in central and southern Arizona.
Our first stop was the children’s area, where the kids tried building their own canal system with various shape blocks, and then decorated pots on a magnetic board. The 7 minute video also held their attention. Lots to see and do and touch! This was a great introduction area for kids up to age 12; the signs on various reading levels were good for giving further information to our 4 year old when she had more questions. (There is also a longer video in the main theatre that gives a more in depth overview.)
We then took the outdoor self guiding tour. There are free umbrellas available to carry for shade, and it’s about 2/3 mile walk. Detailed signs are posted at each stop. The path wanders around and through an 800 year old Hohokum platform mound, a ballcourt, a plant garden and a couple replicated homes.
The latter will likely be the most interesting for children, as you can go inside two of the homes and explore the living situation for families. Our kids also enjoyed the garden — lots of native plants, with some details on how the plants would have been used years ago.
Once back inside, we explored the museum section. While geared for adults, it will actually be interesting for children as well. A lot of the displays started at a low level and both kids enjoyed looking at the colored pots and plates. There are also some books available to browse on desert life. If you have the time, be sure to use your cell phone to call a special number and get an audio tour (more information is located at each display).
Our two hour stay was enjoyed by all, and it’s a great place to visit with family or friends wanting to know more about some of original dwellers in the Phoenix area. Also check out the monthly programs offered, such as Archeology for Kids.
Adults (18-54) – $6
Seniors (55+) – $5
Children (6-17) – $3, Free on Sundays
Under Age 6 – Free
Museum Members – Free
Pueblo Grande Museum & Archaeological Park
4619 E. Washington St.
Phoenix, AZ 85034
Phone: (602) 495-0901