Children’s Playhouse Celebrates their 11th Birthday!

playhousebirthdaybashThe High Country’s only children’s museum, The Children’s Playhouse, will celebrate its 11th birthday with a five-day celebration, running from Tuesday through Saturday, Nov. 12 to 16.

The Playhouse 11th Birthday Bash will feature free admission, membership discounts, special activities all week and free pizza and cake on Saturday. The Children’s Playhouse is located at 400 Tracy Circle in Boone.

“If you’ve never visited The Children’s Playhouse, this is your no-excuses chance to check it out,” Playhouse co-founder and executive director Kathy Parham said. “Thanks to our generous sponsors, admission will be free all five days, and we will be offering $5 off a one year family membership and $10 off a Passport membership.”

Normally $100, a family membership gives a whole family unlimited admission and other discounts at the Playhouse for a whole year. Passport memberships, normally $125, offer the same benefits, plus half price admission to more than 150 other children’s museums around the country. Because the Playhouse is a nonprofit, $75 of the membership fee is tax-deductible.

The museum will host special free activities all week. Highlights include a chance for kids ages 4 to 8 to make their own dream “green” home out of cardboard on Tuesday afternoon, with students from the Appalachian State University Solar Decathlon team and a visit from Grandfather Mountain’s Jill Goodwin, who will bring “creepy critters,” including owls, snakes, opossums and hissing cockroaches on Thursday morning.

Families will have opportunities to make and eat healthy snacks on Tuesday morning and Thursday afternoon, thanks to Earth Fare and the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service. Birdie, Birdie will be providing professional face painting on Wednesday afternoon. On Friday morning, families can sample a rollicking music class with Laura Donovan, who regularly teaches six-week classes for infants, toddler and preschoolers at the Playhouse. For more information, visit

“Saturday is going to be super fun,” Parham said, mentioning Angel Bear Yoga at 10:15 a.m., followed by an all kids performance of mountain music from the Junaluska Wildcats, featuring Liam Purcell, 12, and Willow Dillon, 14, and then a while-supplies-last party, featuring Earth Fare pizza and Stick Boy Bread Company birthday cake.

“Liam has been playing at The Playhouse since he was a toddler,” Parham said, “but he is more widely known for playing his fiddle and banjo at Horn in the West, MerleFest and all sorts of regional competitions.”

Playhouse fans will have opportunities to give back, as well. “Like any 11-year-old, we love presents,” Parham joked. “Truly, we have to fundraise year round to keep improving our facility and to keep our fees low for families.”

Admission and membership fees cover less than 30 percent of the museum’s total budget, and The Playhouse also gives away more than 50 free memberships a year to low-income families and social service agencies.

During the Birthday Bash, the museum will post a wish list of needed items, ranging from glue sticks to money. When families bring in a donation, they can add a decoration to a giant birthday cake poster. Members are encouraged to bring in new guests and, when they do, will be entered into daily prize drawings for a free parents’ night out. All bash attendees will be entered into twice daily drawings for children’s books donated by the ASU Bookstore.

For more information, call (828) 263-0011 or visit