Disclosure: My family was provided with complimentary admission in exchange for a review. All thoughts expressed are my own.
950 Trout Brook Drive, West Hartford, CT 860-231-2824
I have nature loving children. They’re the ones you’ll find collecting rocks in their backpacks, putting bugs in little containers, and choosing butterfly catchers from the dollar bins at Target. I love their love for the outdoors even though I might not love cleaning the dirt stains out of their clothes. When I first heard about Winged-Wonders at The Children’s Museum in West Hartford, CT I knew it was something my little ones would really enjoy.
We’ve visited The Children’s Museum before (read my full review) and got to see everything that the museum had to offer inside. Since it was winter during our first trip the butterfly garden wasn’t open. This time we got to experience all of that the museum has to offer, including the new dinosaur exhibit and winged-wonders butterfly garden.
Winged-wonders is included in the price of your admission. The butterflies are housed in a screened-in garden next to the outdoor animals. The butterfly garden is a tranquil area full of flowers, foliage, and monarch and painted lady butterflies fluttering all around. There are a few butterfly themed benches available to sit and watch the wonder of the butterflies.
TIP: Check your local library for discount admission passes to save on the price of admission
The butterfly garden is open during museum hours throughout the summer. You can walk through the garden and observe the butterflies any day.
Each Friday at noon more butterflies are released. We got a chance to experience first-hand how amazing this experience really is. The butterfly release was led by a staff member who gives you fun and interesting facts about butterflies. He shows you the steps for releasing the butterflies and then you get a chance to join in on the fun!
Did you know that butterflies like the taste of watermelon? Before the presentation, the staff passed out slices of watermelon. The watermelon served as a refreshing snack for us, and the sweet juice left over on our fingers attracted the butterflies to us. Also spread throughout the garden were loofahs (just like the ones in your shower) soaking in a mixture of Gatorade, soy sauce, and honey to attract the butterflies. I wonder if this recipe would also attract butterflies to our own gardens.
Releasing the butterflies was simple. Two butterflies are kept in special envelopes. You gently drop them into the palm of your hand. Some may stay a while on your hands and fingers while others will quickly fly away. My kids were amazed. They loved having the butterflies crawling around their hands and flying on their shirts. It was certainly a cool experience.
We loved getting a hands-on look at the butterflies and getting to personally release them into the garden. I would definitely recommend visiting The Children’s Museum this summer and the Winged-Wonders exhibit.