Our Day in Oak Lawn

| February 28, 2009 | 0 Comments
By: Shannon Capanna

Not to be confused with Oak Park or Oak Brook, Oak Lawn is a cute suburban town located just southwest of the city and a few miles south of Midway Airport.

We went to Oak Lawn to visit the Children’s Museum of Oak Lawn. The museum’s current facility is housed in a small one-room schoolhouse-type building that packs every possible learning-oriented toy into a very small space. The water table was a hit with my toddler, as was the ability to play with every building block ever invented. There is a puppet theater, a small grocery store setup, a specific baby area, and several other educational toys. My personal favorite was an art station where kids make a paper kite, which is the logo of the museum because of its motto, “Explore and Soar.” But this is no ordinary art station because a museum volunteer helps kids attach their kites to larger plastic kites, which then soar around the room on a mechanical zipline.

The Children’s Museum of Oak Lawn is geared toward children under 5. Its small size makes it a low-key outing for parents, and nobody appeared stressed and overwhelmed. It’s a great place to stop and spend an hour with your kids if you happen to be in the area.

AND! The museum is in the process of building a brand-new facility that looks just awesome. Scheduled to open in May, the new Children’s Museum of Oak Lawn will be a two-story building with multiple rooms that house exhibits based on such topics as nutrition, economics, the human body, and physical activities. There will be Treemendous Treehouse, a Water Adventure and a Safe Haven Animal Shelter. You can see pictures of the new museum’s plans here.

For now, we enjoyed the children’s museum and its surrounding environs. The museum is located next to Lake Shore Park. Not only does this park have the usual playground, it also has a picturesque river with a cute bridge and a flock of friendly ducks. The town of Oak Lawn itself shows that its residents have a lot of pride in their city. The stores and streets are modern and well-kept. And they have a Portillo’s, which is a great end to any outing.

The Oak Lawn Children’s Museum’s current facility is located at:
9600 East Shore Drive
Oak Lawn, IL 60453
(708) 423-6709

The new Oak Lawn Children’s Museum will be located at:
5100 Museum Drive
Oak Lawn, IL 60453
(corner of 95th St. and Museum Drive, next to Oak Lawn Metra station)


Shannon Capanna is a writer, editor, and mom who lives in south suburban Homewood with her husband, toddler son, and cat.  She blogs at ChicagoMoms Blog, and at her personal site, Boringtown’s Closed.

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Category: News & Events, See & Plays

About the Author ()

Joining Shannon Capanna in Home Sweet Homewood are her professor husband, toddler son, and giant cat. Career-wise, Shannon worked as an elementary school teacher for three years before becoming an editor for math textbooks. She quit that job to try to achieve that elusive work-life balance, and she is now trying to cobble together some kind of career as a writer, editor, and mom. Shannon enjoys swimming, watching quality television, and cat-watching.She also blogs at Chicago Moms Blog, and at her personal site, Boringtown's Closed.

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