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Getting COSI in Columbus

I’m so punny.

Several months ago someone from the state of Ohio contacted me about bringing my little family for a visit to our neighboring state. I’m a HUGE fan of the close-to-home getaway and I’d never actually been to Ohio aside from IKEA in Cincinnati (three times.) They let us choose where we wanted to go and when, so we chose fall break (first two weeks of October) and Southeastern Ohio (Mountains! Fall colors! Adventure!) We’ve been here two days and it has been so much fun. If you live anywhere near Ohio and haven’t been to Hocking Hills in the fall I’m giving you my mom eyes, YOU GUYS HAVE TO COME DOWN (or up) HERE.

Anyway, more on that stuff later. What I really want to talk about today is COSI, a giant science museum in downtown Columbus, Ohio. We figured since we’d be passing through Columbus on the way down to Hocking Hills and on the way back, we’d break up the drive with visits to COSI and The Columbus Zoo on the way back.

Was a giant science museum really a good place for a little toddler like Vivi?

Our girls are seven years apart, Addie is just rounding the corner into getting super geeked about science and it makes my mama nerd heart sing. She could have spent all day at COSI (pronounced Co-Sigh, I said it wrong a thousand times before someone corrected me.) Vivi put up with a lot of the more grown up exhibits like sitting in a submarine and looking at big giant gadgets, but there wasn’t much for her to do and way too many places for her to wander off or get into trouble.

Enter the Little Kidspace.

A magical padded land for kids birth through 5. Yay!

But, remember that seven year age difference? Addie was funneled off into a “Big Kid Lab” while Vivi was given free reign of the little kid area. Addie could look out windows at Vivi, but she wasn’t allowed to play with her, or even watch her. I get it, rules. It’s fine. However Vivi spent her entire two hours in the Little Kidspace randomly calling for Addie and looking around for her. AWW right? Right. Vivi still had loads of fun sliding down slides, throwing balls, and playing in what could easily be considered the world’s best water table. Cody and I switched off running around with Addie, which was also just as fun, but we certainly weren’t all together as a family. Cody and Addie got to do an entire science experiment “class” where they blew stuff up and made flubber. I was a little bummed to miss it but I got to watch Vivi go down a little slide a dozen times squealing “WHEEE!”

So. Would I suggest COSI museum for your family? Yes and no. If there’s two adults and one kid under 5? You may not feel you got your almost $50 worth in one visit, it depends on how cool your kid is just hanging out looking at stuff. The Little Kidspace is spectacular, but probably not $50 spectacular. If you have two kids under 5? Go for it. Let them be free. Kids with a big age difference like Addie and Vivi? Try to have two adults so one or the other isn’t weeping from boredom or sadness because they can’t play with the other.

It was certainly fun, Addie will be talking about it for a long, long time and we enjoyed our time together as a family. Vivi on the other hand? She won’t remember any of it, that’s okay. We’ll remember for her.

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Find more of Casey’s writing on her blog moosh in indy or her Babble Voices site Shutterlovely. She’s also available on twitter, facebook, flickr and Instagram. If you can’t find her any of those places? Check the couch, she’s probably taking a nap.

Disclosure: My family and I were provided three complimentary passes to COSI for the day. All opinions are our own, naturally.

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