Art for de Youngsters
If you haven’t checked out the de Youngsters kids’ art studio at the de Young you have been missing out! This beautiful little playroom offers a range of age appropriate ways for kids to experience art without making a mess. In four progressive stations - moving up in difficulty as you go further into the room - children are able to play with light, color, patterns, and structure. The space is beautiful inviting and always free. There is a even a little potty for your littlest art lover, and a stool by the sink for easy hand washing.
More fun facts about the De Young: it is now free for San Francisco residents every Saturday with ID.Visiting for free means we are less stressed about seeing all the exhibits, and we can simply leave when the kids get too loud or just need a break. We have loved taking our little ones for short visits into the various galleries, hopefully helping them develop a love of art.
As part of their overall community outreach, the de Young now offers free family art events in the tower every Saturday from 11am-4pm. We recently had fun playing with negative space by painting over tape, then removing it to create a tree. It was a bit too advanced for my 2 year olds, but my 4 year old, my husband and I all loved it! And, aside from art activities, the observation tower is always free—a perfect little trip for your kids to observe tiny cars and people down below, and gorgeous views of the city.
Things to think about:
*The De Young does request that you check your “oversized” strollers, which can be challenging if you (like me) use your stroller to control your out-of-control kids in more 'adult' spaces.
*Weekend parking can be pretty difficult in Golden Gate Park. I usually either walk, ride a bike, or expect to park pretty far away, but walking through GGP is lovely and honestly there is so much to explore in the area and there are tons of public transit options - and if you want to pay the museums (CA Academy is accross the way) have an underground parking lot.
*Baby carriers need to be worn in front, and the museum has its own baby carriers to lend out at the coat check downstairs.
*The overall vibe is that kids are expected to be calm and quiet in the galleries, but can be more energetic in the family art spaces and the De Youngster's studio.
Sarah Montoya is a San Francisco mother of three and a postpartum doula. She loves to explore SF and the Bay Area with her little ones. You can follow her adventures, get more family travel tips, and read her thoughts on motherhood at @sarahromontoya
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