For those on the look-out for a perfect summer break destination, the Houston Museum District should be on the top of the list.
“The Museum District represents world-class collections of art, history and science – all within a walkable area,” Laurette Cañizares, Houston Museum District Association director, said. “The museums are one of the biggest draws to the city – and one of the reasons more and more visitors consider Houston a leisure destination.”
Here are just some of the Museum District’s big draws this summer:
An original edition of the Magna Carta has left its home in England’s Hereford Cathedral and will be on display at the Houston Museum of Natural Science through Aug. 17. A collection of Trenton Doyle Hancock’s drawings will be on view at the Contemporary Arts Museum until Aug. 3. This solo exhibition, Trenton Doyle Hancock: Skin & Bones, 20 Years of Drawing, includes more than 70 works as well as the artist’s notebooks, sketchbooks and models. The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston hosts Soto: The Houston Penetrable through Sept. 1 — an indoor piece designed to engage viewers by a wave of 24,000 hand-painted PVC strands suspended from the ceiling.
Fun for all ages
Summer camps at the Museum District are offered for kids from pre-schoolers to high-schoolers. For example, Asia Society of Texas offers Explore Asia: Culture Camps for Kids, where children, ages 7 through 13, learn about the culture of Asia with art activities and performances by dance and music professionals. Discovery Camps at The Health Museum, held June 2 – Aug. 18, offer youngsters a variety of week-long camps, for ages 5 though 17, to learn about health, fitness, medicine and nutrition. From June 2 to August 8, kids ages 4 to 12 can learn about the wildlife at the Houston Zoo’s Camp Zoofari. The Weather Museum’s Weather Camp offers kids ages 5 through 17 an opportunity to learn about the weather and how tornadoes form from actual meteorologists. Science camps for kids ages 6 to 12 are also offered all throughout the summer long at the Houston Museum of Natural Science’s Xplorations Summer Science Adventures. Students, ages 9 through 17, can perfect their photography skills by taking classes at the Houston Center for Photography, June 9 through Aug. 11.
Plenty of space to explore
The Museum District offers plenty space of outdoors to play. Spend a day at the Houston Zoo or at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston’s Cullen Sculpture Garden or Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens. Bring a picnic to the Menil Campus and lay out a blanket in the lawn before heading to the Rothko Chapel and Houston Center for Photography. Hermann Park is also right in the heart of the district – and offers walking tours, pedal boats and plenty of green space to enjoy.
Come for the day or stay and play
Whether you live just a plane-ride away, the next town over or down the street, sometimes it’s nice to plan a little getaway. There are great boutique hotels nearby – like Hotel Zaza – or stay downtown and hop on the light rail.
Summer doesn’t have to break the bank
A number of the museums are FREE every day, including Asia Society Texas Center, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, DiverseWorks, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston Center for Photography, Houston Museum of African American Culture, The Jung Center of Houston, Lawndale Art Center, The Menil Collection, Rice University Art Gallery and the Rothko Chapel. Most of the other museums have dedicated free times. For more information, visit http://houstonmuseumdistrict.org/free-admission-times/.
The Houston Museum District Association is a one-stop shop for all the news and events at 20 of the city’s top cultural institutions. For more information about ways to spend spring break immersed in art, culture and fun, visitwww.houstonmuseumdistrict.org or call 713-790-1083.