Children’s Museum of Beaver Creek celebrates 20 years
If You Go ...
What: Children’s Museum at Beaver Creek.
When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wednesdays-Sundays.
Where: Located just off Beaver Creek Plaza at the top of the fountain in the Ski School Building.
Cost: Admission to the Children’s Museum is free.
Fun at 1
“Fun at One” presentations take place at 1 p.m. each day through Aug. 10.
BEAVER CREEK — Timing is everything and Brian Hall’s was dead solid perfect.
Hall landed in Vail in the early 1980s, about the time when local empresario Brad Quayle and others were positioning the then-fledgling Beaver Creek Resort as a family destination. His Beaver Creek Children’s Theater is 31 years old, and the Children’s Museum of Beaver Creek is 20 years old this month.
“I landed in a place where our missions aligned. Beaver Creek aspired to be the best family resort anywhere. It’s been a wonderful partnership,” Hall said.
These days, the theater audiences and museum visitors include lots of moms and dads being led about by their children, for whom all of this is brand new.
Moms and dads will stop him and exclaim, “Hey, I saw you when I was just a kid!”
Hall replies, “Was I funny?”
“There’s a great tradition of people coming back year after year, and bringing their families,” Hall said.
Vail Resorts brought Quayle on board in the early 1980s to manage Sport Goofy, a Disney character who used to frequent Beaver Creek’s slopes. Quayle brought some others into the fold, including Hall.
“We were the first company in the world to receive Disney training with Disney characters,” Quayle said.
Hall may be one of the world’s only theater majors to actually carve out a career in his college major.
He worked with an improv company, traveled the country working in television and landed in Vail.
“I thought I would be here a week,” Hall said.
He worked with a local cable television company, and they needed to start Channel 5. He set it all up and ran it for three years.
“I was 25 and spent three quarters of a million dollars buying stuff. It was a dream job. I had a blast,” Hall said.
That was about the time Quayle said something like, “Go out there and be funny,” and the Beaver Creek Children’s Theater was born.
A few years later, Hall’s Blue Creek Productions imagineered the Children’s Museum at Beaver Creek. Twenty years has seen thousands of children laugh and play and learn.
“We tried to create a an exciting space where families feel welcome and are excited to see what’s around the next corner,” Hall said. “Vacation is a precious time together for families and we have created a bunch of cool exhibits for families to explore together.”
Stuffed, not stuffy
The Children’s Museum of Beaver Creek is not stuffed with stuffy museum displays. It’s interactive with lots of STEM-based exhibits.
They have a stage where kids can dress up and create their own shows.
The museum is designed to engage kids ages 1-15. Toddler Town, for example, is filled with brightly colored puzzles they can move, and simple games set to test their growing dexterity. New this year is the Build It Junior Workshop, where kids can build anything they can imagine using anything they want, from Keva Planks, K-Nex, Legos and lots of engineering themed and mechanical activities, as well as circuits building.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and firstname.lastname@example.org.