On Memorial Day, the newly renvoated Crayola Experience, in Easton, Penn., on the border of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, reopens with brand new slate of hands-on family activities.
Crayons aren't really made at this 60,000-square-foot Crayola property — that's in another Pennsylvania town. But this family destination, located on the main town square of a town with Revolutionary War roots, was given a total rehab. Now it's a creative playground that, from the outside, looks like it has been dipped in school bus yellow paint.
A canal museum and a McDonald's were elbowed aside so that Crayola could expand throughout the entire building. The 18 interactive exhibits now include "Wrap It Up!", where kids customize their own labels and wrap it around crayons, "Marker Mania," which allows them to make a new marker, and "Crayon Factory," a live show that explains how crayons are made. One of the cooler exhibits is a photo booth-like gizmo that turns your child's image into a page for coloring (and of course you can pay to put it on a tee-shirt). In the new café, expect crayon-colored cupcakes.
One thing that hasn't changed is a ground-level public that stocks all sorts of hard-to-find Crayola crayons and craft products. (It also sometimes sells antique, color streak-ed wooden crates that were once used for storage at the Crayola factory. I own three; they make great nightstands.) Thanks to the upgrades, the company expects visitorship to jump by as much as 50 percent.
Tickets are $16, and they include a bunch of take-home crafts. The new addtions make their debut on May 24.
Artist's rendering credit: Crayola Experience