What if we can’t afford to pay?
If your family is unable to afford a Museum membership, you may qualify for a Free or Reduced Visit or Membership if you are:
- Eligible for Free or Reduced Lunch Program
- Receiving any other form of public assistance
- Having difficult financial circumstances
Sponsored memberships are made possible by the generosity of our Member Families and Museum Donors. Memberships are good for up to six months and may be renewed. Simply ask for a Sponsored Membership form at the front desk. Please call the Museum at 360-956-0818 x0 for any questions.
Can anyone just come in?
Anyone is welcome in the Museum as long as they are accompanied by a child. We have a strict “no adults alone” policy in the Museum. Anyone who wishes to experience the Museum must check in at the front desk.
How do you get to the Museum and where can we park?
Please click here
for directions & parking options.
What about food?
The Museum Cafe is open daily and features coffee, drinks, snacks, and food for purchase. Food from home is allowed if your child or family has special dietary needs. We provide very limited café table space for families who choose to bring their own food from home. Please note that guests may not bring any purchased food into the Museum from other restaurants. We ask that food and drink are not consumed in the galleries.
Are strollers allowed in the museum?
We provide stroller parking in our Lobby and ask that you not take your stroller into the galleries, except under special circumstances, to ensure there is adequate circulation for all guests.
What is your Financial Structure?
The museum is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Can I drop my children off at the Museum?
At the Museum all children must be accompanied by an adult
(16 or older) unless registered for a special Museum program such as preschool, camps, etc.
What forms of payment do you accept?
The museum accepts cash, check, Visa, Master Card, and Discover.
Why do you charge for adults?
The museum encourages interactive play between children and their adults. Your family's admission only covers about 50% of the cost of your visit, and we raise the other 50% through grants, sponsorships, and donations.
How can I volunteer?
The Museum is always in need of responsible teen and adult volunteers to help with camps, programs, museum projects, and Sand in the City. The Museum uses an average of 1,000 volunteers each year. For more information please click here
or stop by the Museum and pick up a volunteer application.
Will you donate to other auctions?
The Museum will support other 501(3)(c) non-profit organization’s auctions and events. The Museum requests that a formal request be faxed or mailed to the Museum on the organization’s letterhead. Please include the organization’s Tax ID number and either the date of the event or the deadline for the donation. Each request will be reviewed, and if approved , the donation will be sent to the organization. Please allow ample time for your request to be reviewed.
What are the dates of Sand in the City?
Sand in the City is always the 4th weekend in August. A complete schedule will be available soon.
Does it cost money to attend Sand in the City?
Sand in the City is free for all during the day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday; however a $5 donation per family is suggested. Donations support the Museum’s Free & Reduced Admissions Program. The Museum holds an evening SandBlast Gala on Friday evening of Sand in the City. The Gala is for adults 21 years and older and tickets are required. Tickets can be purchased during July and August.
Where does the sand for Sand in the City come from?
The Hands On Children’s Museum has been using the same type of sand from the same rock quarry since the first Sand in the City in 2001. Over the years, the Museum has continued to reuse the same 270 tons of sand each summer. Our wonderful Sand Sponsor, Olympia Sand & Gravel, stores the sand for us each year in an undisclosed location for safe and dry storage. Each year, prior to the event, Olympia Sand & Gravel retrieves the Sand and dumps it at the port site for the start of the sand sculpting competition.