Hands On Children's Museum

Hands On Children's Museum, Jacksonville: Hours, Address, Hands On Children's Museum Reviews: 3.5/5

Hands On Children's Museum
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

60 reviews
Very good

Jacksonville, FL78 contributions
It was average, toys were dated and there was dust everywhere. We'd not go back.
Written January 4, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

82 contributions
Jul 2016 • Friends
So for the people that say it's filthy...it's a "hands on children's museum"... what do you expect??? So it's an old building and needs some TLC, but any kid I know under 10 LOVES IT! They are working on renovation in dribs and drabs. It is a great place to enjoy a HOT summer day. The concept is great and rather than complain, just donate to the fund to help fix it up. It's cheap to get in and we'll worth it in my opinion. But I am not one of those parents that allows my kids to play with electronics all the time...its an average place. Why is average so bad these days? Worth it to try it, if you have younger kids.
Written July 30, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Allison W
Tallahassee, FL13 contributions
Feb 2015
My husband had training so we brought our 4 yr old and grandbabies to jax for two days. I'm so glad I risked it, we spent four hours here and my littles had a blast.
No, it's not the Ritz Carlton, it's a kids play area... "museum" seems a bit of a stretch but it was definitely fun. A bit run down but the goal was to keep 1,2,4 yr olds busy and having fun and we did exactly that. Definitely pricey, $19 for four of us, but it was worth it.
Written February 8, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Karen L
Jacksonville, Florida, United States6 contributions
Jun 2013 • Family
I took a long time before writing this review, because first I was waiting for a resolution, and then I just had better things to do.

I used to bring my children here all the time. It was 5 minutes away and something indoors to do. It was kind of run down, but I would always defend it to friends against the claims of it being filthy. I never found it terribly dirty. My biggest complaint was that the dress-up clothes were in tatters.

Then, I tried to renew my membership for the 4th year in a row. We had enjoyed a family membership, the first year for the parents and kids in our house, and then the next years including the grandparents as well.

I attempted to renew at the same level (grandparents, parents, children). They processed my payment, and then apparently noticed that both of the parents listed on our form were female. They then attempted to charge me $10 extra for being a lesbian family. They humiliated me in front of the kids.

I attempted to get a resolution right then by speaking to management, only to be met with a brick wall - 'management wasn't there' and they wouldn't give me contact info. I left in tears after getting my money back, after informing them that I would be telling all my friends about this.

Well, my friends weren't impressed, and they actually got media coverage of this issue. The museum staff issued bizarre statements, changed their policy to be "fair" by increasing the prices for everyone, and proceeded to insult my family and accuse me lying and stealing from them.

I have literally never experienced such a fiasco of customer service, much less the kind of backwards bigotry that would convince them that it was fair for my family to be charged an extra $10 because we are Mommy and Mama instead of Mommy and Daddy.

We have found a new place to go across the river, and besides not being homophobic and nasty, the new place has the benefit of the staff *actually liking children*, which I never realized was missing from the Hands On Children's Museum until I went somewhere that they engage with, play with, and remember the children that visit and value their experience there.
Written November 20, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Pensacola, FL13 contributions
Jan 2015 • Family
We visited the Children’s Hands On Museum on Sat, January 10. What a mess you have there!
For beginners- there was no introduction to the place or anything. We stated that it was our first time in and the cashier just said “ $15 and go in”. So we paid and went in.
I remained positive the entire time we were there, and my child had a good time playing. I said nothing negative about the place, but I carefully watched my child play to make sure she did not get hurt on the faulty equipment and hanging cords.
The place is dirty… I did not say anything out loud about how the place looked or smelled- but my 3 year old said “this place is yucky”.
The Vet station: 1-there were ZERO doctor tools. 2- the scale is busted. 3- the thing that measures how tall you are is loose and wobbly. There is a loose screw sticking out of the bottom- HELLO, someone has had to have seen that and just not cared about the safety of these children.
The Fire Station: 1- Under the ramp where the pole is, there is an electrical outlet that had no covers on them. I went to the front and told 3 employees who did nothing for about 30 min then put 1 cover on the 2 socket outlet leaving one still exposed- KIDS CRAWL UNDER THERE>>> IT IS AT EYE AND HAND LEVEL_ Dangerous & Ridiculous.
The Post Office Station: 1- DRY INK PADS- come on people- if you are offering a learning experience at least fill up the flipping ink for the kids to stamp their letters. 2-The mail sorter has multiple exposed SHARP edges.
The Bank: 1.There was almost N0 money to play with. 2- And the brochure states that the kids can learn to write checks---- there was nothing of that nature over there… COME ON! 3- There were hanging cords from the LARGE computers- dangerous is all I will say about that.
The Picnic Area: 1- YUCK – Trashy. 2- The back of the coke machine is open and exposed. There were cut cords hanging down into water, and the entire backside was hot and the plugs were not hidden.
TV Thing: It says “VIDEO” on a black screen…. Something was supposed to be on for kids to learn…
The Female Restroom: 1-LOCKS ARE INOPERABLE on stall doors. 2- there is fallen tiles- just looks decrepit.
The worst thing of all was the little kids area (3 and under). Behind the plastic castle is a FLAMING HOT WALL. My husband touched it and yelled “OUCH” (an adult was affected by the heat). What the heck is there a HOT wall for? And why in the world would you set toys up for children who are learning to walk and using walls to brace themselves in a room made with a hot wall???
Written January 13, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Marie W
Jacksonville, Florida, United States3 contributions
Sep 2013 • Family
We had a birthday party for my 8-year-old son. I reserved it for 20 children and adults not knowing that I would have to pay for 20 (@$10.50 per person) whether they arrived or not. I had 15 total but still had to pay for 20, which is over $50!!!! I had to pay $10.50 each for 5 phantom people who never stepped foot into the museum!!! The cost of the pizza, ice-cream, and drinks (diet soda for children!!!) come nowhere near $10.50 per person. Also, part of the $10.50 per person was to have a worker at the museum do all the work for us in the party room. Well, this lady said that she was coughing and too sick to be in the same room as the children so I had to run the party, serve the food, cut the cake, etc. myself! Also, there was no knife with which to cut the cake!! My husband had to use his swiss army knife to cut the cake! When it came time to pay, I asked them if I could just pay for the actual 15 people and they refused and said that I had to pay for 20 because that is what I signed up for. They really are a low-class operation and I would not recommend this venue for birthday parties, which is a shame because the museum itself is so much fun for the kids. It is like the world's greatest playroom. I still am so angry about how poorly I was treated there. I have slept on it for 2 days and still cannot believe how unprofessional it was. I still have a very bad taste in my mouth.
Written September 16, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jacksonville, FL1 contribution
Mar 2013 • Family
I was excited about taking my 2 1/2 year old to a hands on museum but this place was depressing. It has a lot of potential and plenty of activities but it looks like it hasn't been updated (or cleaned) since it opened. Every time my daughter tried to play with something there seemed to be broken pieces or parts missing. The car wheels don't roll, the stuffed animals were missing eyes, the dress-up was so gross we just skipped that part, the ball pit was half filled and most of the balls were broken in half. It made me sad because it could be awesome if it got a make over and some halfway decent upkeep. I understand that renovations can be expensive but how hard is it to throw away broken toys, fix the flickering lights and water stained ceiling and play some happier music?
Written March 28, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

2 contributions
Where do I start? I had driven past this place a number of times before actually going. From the outside the structure looked run down and unkept. I thought the inside might be different from what I saw on the inside. It was similar, things were unorganized and unkept. Several items were either incomplete or broken. There was a half empty play ball area. A basketball area with wheelchairs and deflated balls. Very disorganized with a staff that seemed to be there only to collect your admission and do little else. Save your money folks, there are plenty of other places to spend your afternoon.
Written March 27, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Misty H
Jacksonville, FL1 contribution
Mar 2013 • Family
As a local, I had a day off with my child, wanting to get out and do something with my 19-month old we tried the hands-on museum...within 3 minutes I was asking for a refund. The place had a field trip but there was not one once of control over the visitors. We went directly to the 3 and under area thinking we would be okay - but it was messy, nothing was put up, older children were in there and it was just gross.

The staff didn't help the situation. You can't get a refund without permission from the owner who is offsite and "always on the phone and busy", you can't get the manager's name or number to discuss it with them, and their concern or customer service was non-existent. The employee stood in front of me and condescendingly told her manager 1/2 of the story and mockingly explained why I wanted my money back.

If you have a toddler, make sure you build your schedule around their field trips in the morning - but don't expect to have it be convienent or clean. It was extremely dissappointing and it is not a museum, but a romper room for field trips.
Written March 21, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Dustin S
Eleva, WI74 contributions
Apr 2017
We took my son here while visiting my grandparents since he loves the children's museum back home. This place is absolutely gross. Instantly you walk in and it's musty smelling. Stuff not secured well or very wore out. Everything was also very messy. Then we got back to the toddler area where there were roaches and bugs crawling around. We did not stay very long.
Written December 19, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Hands On Children's Museum

Hands On Children's Museum is open:
  • Mon - Sat 9:30 AM - 5:00 PM