The Children’s Museum of Tacoma was established in 1985 by parents, teachers, and community leaders dedicated to creating unique resources for families in Tacoma and the South Puget Sound Region. The Museum opened in 1986 as a non-profit organization and remained in its original downtown Tacoma location for 10 years, rotating single theme exhibits every 18-months.
Due to excellence in education, programming, and hands-on exhibits, the Museum earned a reputation as a cornerstone for early learning. As a result, the Museum’s physical location and size could no longer accommodate the community’s demand for its services. In 1996, the Museum’s Board of Directors voted to relocate to the Theater District’s historic Kress Building, here the Museum featured both single and multiple-theme exhibits and an array of complementary programming in its 3,800 square foot, storefront location.
The move in January 2012 to a new, larger space at 1501 Pacific Avenue – combined with the support of early learning programs and Museum access – fulfills objectives of the Museum’s Strategic Plan. Our current priorities include:
• Proactively Measure Impact and Improve Fiscal Sustainability
•Increase Audience, Access, and Capacity
• Advocate for and Lead Child-Centered, Systemic Change
Since the Museum’s move to 1501 Pacific Avenue in 2012, the organization has seen exponential growth and exciting thought leadership. With the addition of two Preschool classrooms, and a dedication to advocating for children in the community, the Children’s Museum of Tacoma became Greentrike in 2019, operating the Children’s Museums of Tacoma and at JBLM, Play to Learn, and Preschool Powered by Play.