FAQ

Frequently asked questions

About Spark

Can I host a party, event, or work outing at Spark?


Yes! We will be opportunites to host an event, party etc. The pricing and reservation process will be announced prior to opening.




How can I donate to Spark?


You can donate one of three ways. 1. Donate to our donation page found on the Spark home page or the bottom of each page. 2. Write a check to "MN Childrens Museum Rochester" and it will be directed to our Spark fund. 3. Over the phone, by calling 507-218-3102




What is the new museum going to be like?


Playful learning will be at the heart of the new Spark experiences, along with three focus areas: STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math), health and well-being, and cultural connections. The marquee new exhibits include: Immersive Climber — A vertical maze with platforms, pipes and netting to encourage exploration, confidence and imaginative play. Our World Bazaar — A vibrant role-play space with a pretend cafe, shops and other elements designed to reflect the cultural richness of Rochester’s diverse community. WaterWays — A structure with a dam, turbine, tubes and troughs where children explore the principles of water power. Plus, Spark will continue to add new experiences after the play space opens.




What are the ages for Spark?


Spark will accomodate parents and those ages 0-11 years old.




Where within Apache Mall will Spark be located?


The new museum will be located at the south entrance, down the hallway from JCPenney and across from Serenity Couture Salon and Spa. Spark will have an entrance from the hallway in the mall and a direct entrance from the parking lot.




Does Apache Mall have free parking?


Yes. There is ample parking adjacent to our entrance.





Current Member FAQ

What happens to my membership?


Your membership remains active. While the Rochester location is closed, you may still take advantage of all benefits associated with your membership level (aside from visiting the Rochester museum, of course). If your membership with Minnesota Children’s Museum of Rochester expires February 2020 or later, your membership will automatically be extended five months to ensure that your family gets to enjoy 12 months of an open children’s museum in Rochester. The extension will apply to members at the Rochester and Rochester Plus membership levels – as well as to members at the Passport, Deluxe and Premier levels with Rochester designated as their home museum. Members should expect to receive new membership cards with an updated expiration date in the mail by Jan. 31, 2020. Members of Minnesota Children’s Museum in St. Paul will not receive an extension.




What happens to my admission benefits at the museum in St. Paul?


Rochester and Rochester Plus members will continue to receive a 50 percent discount on admission to the St. Paul location through the extended expiration date of their membership or through Jan. 31, 2021, whichever date comes first. Passport, Deluxe or Premier members with Rochester listed as the home museum will continue to receive free admission to the St. Paul location through the extended expiration date of their membership or through Jan. 31, 2021, whichever date comes first. They also will continue to receive a 50 percent discount at museums that are part of the Association of Children’s Museum network.




What if my membership expires in January?


You can visit the existing Rochester museum through your expiration date. Since you are getting the opportunity to enjoy the museum for 12 months, you will not get an automatic extension. You may choose to renew at any time. Please note that membership levels and prices change Feb. 1, 2020. If you choose to renew in January, your expiration date for visiting the new Spark museum will be June 30, 2021. After Jan. 31, 2020, the current Rochester membership levels will no longer be available. New memberships levels for Spark will be available starting Feb. 1, 2020.




What if I renew my membership?


Anyone who renews a membership by Jan. 31, 2020, will receive the current benefits associated with their chosen level. The admission price benefit associated with visiting the St. Paul museum will expire Jan. 31, 2021. After Jan. 31, 2020, the current Rochester membership levels will no longer be available. New memberships levels for Spark will be available starting Feb. 1, 2020.





FAQ

When will the new play space, Spark be open?


Spark is planning to open at Apache Mall in Summer 2020.




When is the current location closing?


Minnesota Children’s Museum of Rochester will be open through Feb. 16, 2020.




Why is the current location closing before the new space opens?


The lease at the space in River Center shopping mall expires in February. Closing the existing location allows our staff and volunteer community board to focus on completing the new experiences in Spark at Apache Mall. Also, we are planning to host several pop-up experiences this spring as we get ready to open at the mall. We will post dates and locations at www.sparkrochestermn.org




Why is the Rochester museum separating from Minnesota Children’s Museum?


Both organizations agree that the Rochester community will be best served by operating Spark as a separate entity. The Rochester museum has been a community-led endeavor since opening in 2012 and will continue to be so. Spark will foster partnerships that enable the museum to accomplish its mission and deliver the experiences children need to learn and grow. The Rochester museum was founded by a group of organizers committed to creating an important new resource for Rochester area families. The partnership with Minnesota Children’s Museum provided support and resources needed to grow the museum into a successful organization that is now positioned to grow into a new home at Apache Mall. A new location filled with exciting and immersive experiences that reflect our 3 focus areas (STEAM, Health and Well Being, and Cultural Connections) and bring in a feel and sense of our local community seemed like the perfect inflection point to reflect that in a new name, brand and transition into our own museum.




What happens to gift cards and gift tickets?


Valid gift cards can be used anytime at Minnesota Children’s Museum in St. Paul. Gift cards will be accepted at Minnesota Children’s Museum of Rochester through Feb. 16, 2020. They will not be accepted at Spark. Pre-purchased tickets for Minnesota Children’s Museum of Rochester will be valid at the existing location and Spark. If you have paper tickets, you may use present them at the existing museum or Spark. If you have “print-at-home” tickets via email, we will void those tickets after the existing location closes and issue replacement tickets on paper.




What is the price going to be at the new location?


You can find pricing information under the "About" tab. Click "Join" and find out more about memberships and pricing. Admission for adults and children age 1 and older will be $9. Annual family memberships will start at $99.





Prospective Members

How do I become a member of Spark?


You sign up for a membership here https://roch.mcm.org/rochester/rochester-family-memberships/ . For the short term, we will process memberships on this page and later be updated with Spark information. We have families that are lifelong members and some families that are new to this journey. We are excited for you to join!




Can I still buy a membership?


Yes. You may buy any of the current membership levels through Jan. 31, 2020. You will receive free admission to the existing Rochester museum through Feb. 16 and to Spark through June 30, 2021. The St. Paul benefit associated with your membership level will expire Jan. 31, 2021. After Jan. 31, 2020, the current Rochester membership levels will no longer be available. New memberships levels for Spark will be available starting Feb. 1, 2020.





Contact

E: spark@sparkrochestermn.org

P: (507) 218-3100

 

Admission:

Ages 1-59 $9

Seniors $8

Children under 1 Free

Hours

Closed Monday 

Tuesday-Sunday

Open 9am-5pm

Closed 12pm-1pm for cleaning

Spark Address:

Located in Apache Mall in the south corridor of the J.C. Penny wing

1201 12th Street SW Suite 632

Rochester, MN 55902

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The Children's Museum of Rochester, Inc is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. Proceeds from your membership purchases at Spark help fund our programs and future exhibits.

© 2020 by Spark Place of Play

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