Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Association of Children’s Museums meets in St. Louis

InPark visited the ACM MarketPlace on 17 May 2022 – part of Interactivity, the annual gathering of the Association of Children’s Museums (ACM), held this year in St. Louis at St. Louis Union Station Hotel and hosted by The Magic House. The theme was “PLAY The Long Game” to explore ways that children’s museums can adapt to today’s dynamics while simultaneously preparing for the future.

Conference keynote Maxine Clark, founder and former chief executive of Build-A-Bear Workshop® provided insight on how entertainment, education and merchandising can come together to help children’s museums succeed in their missions as well as financially.

ACM presented its annual Great Friends to Kids Award to PBS KIDS, citing for outstanding impact on the lives of children, building knowledge, critical thinking, imagination, and curiosity.

At the JRA booth: Shawn McCoy, Executive VP and Mike Meyer, Sr. Project Director. This well-established design firm is active in museums, theme parks, zoos and attractions and was recently acquired under the umbrella of RWS Entertainment Group. “We’re busier than ever,” reports McCoy.

Started in 1962, ACM is a professional member organization for the children’s museum field now celebrating its 60th Anniversary Year. ACM member museums and professionals are dedicated to early childhood play, and play-based learning, the starting point in the continuum of lifelong learning.

At the booth of Beaudry Interactive: Valeria Beaudry, Principal and Heidi Pinchal, Business Development. Active in museums and themed entertainment, the company’s recent work includes pioneering applications of gesture technology to interactive mascots and immersive live games.

The St. Louis area is home to many outstanding and unique museums. In addition to a full program of development sessions as well as the MarketPlace, ACM attendees were welcomed (with free admission) May 15-20 to The Magic House, CityGarden, Missouri Botanical Garden, Missouri History Museum, the Museum at the Gateway Arch, the National Blues Museum, St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station, St. Louis Zoo, St. Louis Science Center, Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum, and the World Chess Hall of Fame, among others.

Jennifer Lee Hackett, Director of Museums and Non-Theatrical Sales at Sinking Ship Entertainment, was on hand to promote the company’s special venue media for educational exhibition in museums and streaming.


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Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin ([email protected]) is a leading journalist, publicist, strategist, blogger, content marketing specialist and connector in the international attractions industry. She excels at writing about all aspects of design and technical design, production and project management. Areas of special interest include AV integration and show control, lighting design and acoustics, specialty cinema, digital video and world’s fairs. Judith has ties to numerous industry organizations. From 2005-2020 she ran communications, publications and social media for the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). In 2013, she was honored with the TEA Service Award. She was development director of IMERSA, and co-chair of the 2014 IMERSA Summit. She was publicist for the Large Format Cinema Association in the 1990s, now part of the Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA) and has also contributed to the publications of PLASA, IAAPA and the International Planetarium Society. Already making her mark as a magazine and book editor, Judith joined World’s Fair magazine in 1987, which introduced her to the attractions industry. Launching as a freelancer in the mid 1990s she has contributed to dozens of publications and media outlets including Funworld, Lighting&Sound America, Sound & Communications, Urban Land, The Raconteur and The Planetarian. She joined InPark in 2010. Judith earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute. She has lived in New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area, and now makes her home in Saint Louis, where she is active in the local arts and theater community.

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