My family recently attended the press opening of Mister Rabbit’s Circus at the McCord Museum here in downtown Montreal. We were all excited to go and check out the exhibit which is in it’s 6th edition.
Children enter the circus through a funfair area which has a duck fishing bucket and several toys on display. They then enter the circus which is a big tent filled with toys to look at and interact with. Finally, there is the backstage area.
The exhibit is visually stunning and the colours and lights are delightful.
However, the area itself is quite small and most of the toys are on display only behind glass. There are a few interactive displays including the duck fishing and drawing on a black board. There’s also an area to sit and read books right in the middle of the tent. If your child is someone who is curious and likes to take their time looking, exploring and reading I think they would love it.
My three year old is not much of a sitter and he really needs to be able to run around and interact. As such, the exhibit itself would not hold his interest for too long at all. Fortunately, the McCord Museum has a bunch of other activities that families can participate in.
If your kid is very active and hands on and you are thinking about attending this exhibit I strongly suggest you take part in these other activities to round out your visit.
Mister Rabbit’s Circus Colouring Book
Children must help Mister Rabbit and his friends solve a mystery with clues along the route and nab the culprit. This helps kids to interact with the exhibit and take a closer look at some of the objects they may have breezed by originally. The colouring book is available at the admission desk, in the backpack (see below) and in the exhibition itself.
On Sundays, there are workshops from inspired by Mister Rabbit’s Circus from 11am – 4pm. During the workshop, the whole family will enjoy learning how to make fanzines, a handmade publication.
There are also free backpacks (available in limited quantities) available at the admissions desk which contains everything needed for your Adventure at the Museum.
Other ways in which children can expand their visit include story hour every Saturday and Sunday at 2pm in English and 11am in French. This will be focused on the Mister Rabbit exhibit.
So in short, I feel that if you went to the McCord Museum to see Mister Rabbit’s Circus with a young one that needs a lot of interaction and stimulus you may end up a little disappointed at the length of the exhibit. However, if you plan ahead and in addition to a visit to the exhibition you take part in the other activities this could be a delightful activity.
The other exhibitions in the McCord Museum weren’t especially interesting for my hyperactive three year old, but perhaps other children might find them of interest.
McCord Museum, 690 Sherbrooke Street West
ps Street parking is free until 13h on Sundays!
(Photo Credits: Professional Shots of the Exhibit © Marilyn Aitken, McCord Museum)
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