Tuesday Night At The Mint Museum

This evening I decided to take advantage of a little known secret here in Charlotte… free admission on Tuesday evenings from 5pm-9pm at both of the Mint Museum’s locations!  Last week my son went with me to a meeting I had at the Mint Uptown and wanted to spend time in the Lewis Family Gallery.  The gallery is a hands on gallery where children are able to enjoy various activities.  Because my meeting ran late and it was a school night, I told him we would come back and do it another night, tonight was that night.

While heading up to the museum from the parking deck, and not paying attention to the direction of the arrow, we walked onto an elevator that was occupied.  I immediately recognized that it was the museum’s President and CEO, Kathleen Jameson.  We told her that we were headed to visit the museum’s family gallery, I introduced myself and told her that I photographed some of the museum’s grand opening events.  She seemed very excited to see us there and thanked us for visiting.  Upon entering the museum one of the ladies at the welcome desk asked if I was there to see the museum’s Director of Community Relations, Rubie Britt-Height.  I have volunteered for some of the events Rubie has organized and when appropriate, she has allowed me to bring my son to help as well.  And if you know anything about small children, they love having responsibilities and being special helpers.  We told her we were there as visitors this evening.  And then she told us that if we hurried, we could go into the museum’s auditorium because tonight was the first of the Movie and a Mint series.  Tonight’s film was Harlem Renaissance: Music and Rhythms that Started a Cultural Revolution.  It was a great forty minute piece on the impact of the Harlem Renaissance.  We both enjoyed seeing greats like Lena Horne, Cab Calloway, Count Basie and other prominent figures during that time.  Oh, and let me not forget to mention that there was no additional charge to view the movie.  The series is a collaboration with the museum and the Charlotte Mecklenburg Public Library.

After the movie we moved into the Lewis Family Gallery where both of us enjoyed the rooms’ various areas and stations.  My son moved around to a few areas while I spent all of my time in the Imagination Station.  I enjoyed using colored pencils, crayons, stencils and rubbing templates to create a few different random pictures.  One of which I plan to put in a frame to place on my desk at work.  The difficult part of the evening….was getting my son out of the gallery.  Of course I had to promise another visit very soon since there were a few things he wasn’t able to do tonight.  One of the things we’ll be doing on our next visit is taking advantage of the museum’s Art Packs.  They are backpacks filled with museum specific activities that guide them through the museum, similar to a scavenger hunt.  Both of the Mint’s locations have regular events and activities for children and families(http://www.mintmuseum.org/families-and-kids.html).  I’m sure there will be times when deciding which location to visit on a Tuesday will be difficult because of the planned activities.  Ironically tonight’s event at the other location, Mint Museum Randolph was ArtFusion and featured Japanese Art.  It was some of the same activities that I shared in my post, If Your Pearls Are Cultured Shouldn’t You Be? http://wp.me/p11ALE-26 , which talked about our attending that location’s opening weekend around a new piece by a Japanese artist.

Tonight’s date night activity was a nice change from our regular after school/work weeknight routine.  This blog was started on the premise of spending time daily doing something just for yourself with the 86,400 seconds that we get each day.  Tonight our date at the museum was 5,400 seconds of time together, learning something new and having fun.  I’m going to enjoy the moments tomorrow when I remember some of his facial expressions during the movie, the always warm and welcoming smile on Rubie’s face when she saw us tonight and of me enjoying my own art project in the family gallery.

What have you done for yourelf today with your 86,400?

One of my creations! ;-D

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