Finding a home for the Green Mountain Children's Museum

BURLINGTON The City of Burlington held the first of two informational meetings back in December to discuss plans for remodeling the Moran Plant building on Burlingtons Waterfront. So far, there are three tenants hoping to utilize the buildings space, and Mayor Bob Kiss told those in attendance that the Green Mountain Childrens Museum (GMCM) is part of a $21 million plan that also calls for an indoor ice and rock climbing facility, an outdoor ice skating rink, a splash water park, a public park, and a cafe and restaurant. The Community Sailing Center currently occupies a portion of the building, and that organization is also being considered in the plan. Currently, the City Council is discussing whether or not to place the Moran Plan plan on the ballot for March 2008. A first for Vermont
Mayor Kiss decision to include GMCM in his proposal for the Moran Plant could prove to be a monumental one for Vermont, as the state currently does not have a childrens museum. Mia Graham Beer, GMCM founder, noted that the proposed location for the museum would provide year-round access for Vermonters. The waterfront really is Burlingtons playground, she said. What better place than the waterfront for a Childrens Museum? The Moran Plant project is in keeping with one of our core philosophies of ensuring the Childrens Museum is accessible to all Vermonters, year round. GMCMs mission is to spark the imaginations of the young and the young-at-heart, and to provide an environment where playing and learning go hand-in-hand. The organization consists of a seven person board, seven committees and at least 30 volunteers. The GMCM started in 2003 when a group of eight people felt the need to address the absence of a childrens museum in the community. In December 2004, the group received tax exempt status. Currently, Vermont is one of six states throughout the U.S. that does not have a childrens museum. The proposed museum would be specifically designed for children and would place a high priority on education through creative play. The second of the two meeting will be held on Thursday, January 3 at 6 p.m. at the Burlington High School Cafeteria. For more detailed information about Mayor Kiss proposal, visit www.cedoburlington.org . For more information about the Green Mountain Childrens Museum, please visit www.gmcm.org .

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