News & Events - Press Releases

3. The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

Press Contact: Nina Foster
(202) 414-0791;

Web Site:

museum exterior with large dinosaur sculpture

Left to right: Erica Hahn, Spencer Hahn, Jeffrey H. Patchen, Mrs. Obama. Click image for a larger view.

The Children’s Museum is at the forefront of creating learning experiences with the power to transform the lives of children and families. It is a pioneer in both the education and museum worlds, offering engaging exhibits, interpretive activities, standards-based school programs, and teacher development workshops. Eight-year old Spencer Hahn is just one of the children who have accomplished the unimaginable with his family while visiting. Doctors thought he would never walk or talk due to a stroke in-utero, which led to lifelong medical challenges. Yet, he spoke his first words and took his first steps at the place he calls 'his museum,' The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. The Children’s Museum also proudly participates in the Let’s Move! Museums & Gardens Initiative.

"This is an incredible honor for our museum and the people who work so hard to make it the best place in the world for intergenerational learning,” said Dr. Jeffrey H. Patchen, president and CEO, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. “We are extremely proud of the rich culture, history, science, and art that we are able to share through our one-of-a-kind, immersive exhibits and programs; but, it is the passion and dedication of our staff to reach out with their hearts in a personal way that truly helps transform lives and create family memories that will be cherished for years to come.” Spencer Hahn and his mother, Erica, will travel to Washington and share the impact The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis has had on his life during the May 8 celebration. Watch video of Spencer's story on YouTube. Read transcript (PDF, 51KB)

Praise for The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis:

“The Indianapolis Children’s Museum is a prime destination for families not only in Indiana, but all across the country. By continuing to change the way we present science, history, and art to young people, the Children’s Museum has helped spark a love of learning in countless lives.  I congratulate the Children’s Museum on receiving this prestigious award, and I thank them for everything they have done for Indianapolis, Indiana, and children everywhere.” – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly (IN)

“Whenever I meet families headed to Indianapolis for the first time, I always tell them to visit the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. I took my own children there for years when they were younger and I am so glad the museum helped them imagine all of the possibilities that exist through art, science and the humanities. As someone who served on the museum’s board of trustees before being elected to Congress, I know how much dedication, talent and hard work goes into each unique family learning experience that is offered. So it comes as no surprise to learn this Indianapolis institution has earned the most prestigious award the nation bestows upon museums and libraries for exceptional service to America’s communities. My heartfelt congratulations go out to the entire Children’s Museum of Indianapolis family. Their work transforms the lives of children from Indiana and across the world.” – U.S. Rep. Susan W. Brooks (IN)

“This is an enormous honor for the Children’s Museum and for Indianapolis, which really should get a separate award for being such a wonderful place to raise a family. The Children’s Museum is a beautiful facility filled with knowledge and opportunity for young people of all ages. Visitors come from across the nation to visit the world’s largest children’s museum, and it’s an incredible resource for those who call Indianapolis home. I’m proud to represent the district where this gem is located, and I congratulate the museum, its staff and leadership on this well-deserved award.” – U.S. Rep. Andre Carson (IN)


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