With more than 30 interactive exhibits and activities, Kids 'N' Stuff Children's Museum provides a safe environment for youngsters to exercise their imaginations and bodies. A veritable microcosm of the world lives between the museum's walls. For instance, a grocery exhibit stocked with produce and frozen goods allows children to fill up their carts, run the checkout lane, and refuse expired coupons. An 8'x16' climbing wall challenges youth to literally reach for new heights of achievement, and an art room equipped with an accessible easel and large-handled paintbrushes invites them to figuratively jump for the sky. As a further enticement to the arts, a drama area encourages wee ones to create puppet shows and dress up in costumes.
Kids 'N' Stuff Children's Museum coordinates with area schools to incorporate and add to the themes from the local education curriculum, helping to reinforce the most important lessons kids are learning. Like NASA's recruitment department, this nonprofit's focus is on children aged 10 months to 10 years.
The entire state of Michigan serves as the stockroom for The Great Lakes Market Place. The market's owners, husband and wife John and Sara LaCroix, scour the pleasant peninsula to fill their shelves with everything from farm fresh eggs, to baked goods, to micro-brewed beers. More than 200 total items arrive regularly from 70 plus Michigan-based producers, including Williams Cheese Co. of Linwood and Little Diablo Salsa of Brighton.
While their goods come from across Michigan, John and Sara model their market's atmosphere after the small-town grocers of old, where neighbors would spend some time chatting about supply-chain economics. They often greet customers by name, before pouring them a cup of hot coffee from The Great Lakes Coffee Roasting Company or scooping cones of Guernsey Ice Cream. Their market also encompasses The Great Lakes Artisan Village, which displays the creative work of Michigan-based artists including sculptors, painters, and authors.