In anticipation of the Cumberland County School System’s Spring Break, the Museum of the Cape Fear and the Poe House have put together an interactive exhibit for school-age children and their families, as well as anyone else looking for fun and interesting ways to pass the time.
     The best part is, it doesn’t cost a thing.
     “It is the first time we have ever done something specifically for kids in the (Poe) House,” said Heidi Bleazey, Poe House educator. “I guess that there is still a perception out there that history museums are boring, dull, quiet places full of things you can’t touch and things that are old and valuable that would cost a lot of money to replace and I don’t think that is how we want people to think about museums anymore.” {mosimage}
     What better way to bring the past to life than to engage young minds with a challenging and engaging game? The title of the exhibit is Thoroughly Modern Mischief, and the staff has been pulling pranks indeed, looking for ways to outwit museum visitors and possibly even garner a double-take here and there.
     This is how it works: show up at the Poe House for a regularly scheduled tour, and be prepared for some head games along the way. Each visitor will receive a form to record his findings. Look for things that are out of place or don’t belong. Is that a video game in the parlor? An electric can opener in the kitchen? Did they even have electric can openers in 1897 (when the Poe House was built)...or electricity for that matter? Learn about yester years’ counterparts and alternatives to modern conveniences that are so routinely taken for granted. Visitors will be amazed at the differences between now and then.
     There will be more than 30 misplaced items. While some will be obvious, others will not, so pay close attention if you want to find them all.
     “It is those kinds of things that they are looking for if there is something modern out of place,” said Bleazey. “As they discover it, that is when the docent or guide will talk about it. These are strategic items that allow for a now and then type of tour.” {mosimage}
      Rest assured the guides are kid friendly and plan to make the event entertaining as well as educational. So while the kids are out of school and looking for something fun to do and parents want something that is close to home, affordable yet educational and doesn’t require a lot of time or planning keep the Poe House in mind. Come enjoy the thrill of the hunt, April 14-19.  
     Tours are offered on the hour Tuesday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday from 1-4 p.m. The Museum of the Cape Fear Poe House is located at 801 Arsenal Ave. Call Heidi Bleazey at 486-1330 for more info www.museumofthecapefear.ncdcr.gov.
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