[photo courtesy of the Skirball Center]
At the top of the 405 freeway among the hills of the Santa Monica mountains lies the Skirball Cultural Center, a museum and auditorium complex devoted to Jewish history and culture whose mission is to “seeks to welcome and inspire people of every ethnic and cultural identity in American life.” With lectures, concerts, and exhibits, the Skirball provides a venue for entertainment and educational events off the beaten path.
For families with young children, the gem of the Skirball’s center is the permanent installment, “Noah’s Ark.” A kid-life-sized ark with interactive exhibits made out of recycled materials, Noah’s Ark is so popular that tickets provide timed entry to help maximize every little explorer’s adventure within. Children can climb the ark and nets, load the animals in two-by-two, witness a thunderstorm, create arts and crafts, and catch a glimpse of a rainbow in the misty arbor garden outside the galleries.
Noah’s Ark is fun, whimsical, and educational, and will kill at least an hour in out of the glaring summer heat. Order your tickets ahead of time online – $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under (under 2′s are free). Tickets include admission to the rest of the Skirball’s exhibits as well. (The center is closed on July 4th.)