I have fond memories of reading Clifford books when I was a little girl, so I was thrilled with the opportunity to take my boys to “Adventures with Clifford the Big Red Dog,” the new exhibit at Imagine It! The Children’s Museum of Atlanta. Clifford definitely stands the test of time. I witnessed young children and their parents eager to enter the museum for a visit with the beloved red canine.
If you time it just right, you’ll encounter the big red dog himself, and children flock to him like a rock star! Be sure to bring your camera to snap pictures, and here’s a hint for a cute photo op: Get your child to pose with Clifford while holding one of his giant dog bones as a prop.
There’s lots to choose from once you enter Clifford’s oversized neighborhood. I wasn’t surprised when my boys scampered over to the gigantic Clifford statue, where they quickly discovered they could slide down his short tail again and again. By far, the most popular attraction was filling Clifford’s huge feeding bowl with his equally large dog bones. It was rewarding to see children who didn’t even know each other using teamwork to load the dog bones onto a conveyor belt while taking turns spinning the wheel.
Next, my boys wrote letters to Clifford and conveniently “mailed” them in the mailboxes located outside the doghouse. This new exhibit has much in the way of hands-on creativity, “let’s pretend,” and performing arts. A bone-shaped sandbox is where youngsters can hone fine-motor skills. There’s a “restaurant” where kids can take orders and “cook” food, and a soundstage for playing instruments. In addition, each attraction has a sign pointing out specific life lessons, also known as “Clifford’s Big Ideas.” I’m sure I wasn’t the only parent who took satisfaction in pointing out the importance of helping others, working together, sharing, and being responsible.
I highly recommend checking out this exhibit and seeing Clifford’s larger-than-life world through the eyes of your kids.
– Felicia Barman
The Children’s Museum of Atlanta
275 Centennial Olympic Park Dr. NW, Atlanta. 404-659-5437 childrensmuseumofatlanta.org
Hours: Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Dates: Through May 6
Admission: $12.75 children and adults; children younger than 2, free. Admission is free on the second Tuesday of the month.