The Zing Zumm Children's Museum is getting things ready for a projected opening in August.

A local children’s museum 12 years in the making is hoping to open its doors in August.

While Liz Owens, chair of the museum, said nothing is set in stone yet, painting and decorating is already underway. The final details, like passing city inspections and obtaining a certificate of occupancy are also in the works as the projected opening day approaches.

“We’re more on track than we’ve ever been,” Lani Beuerman, co-chair of the museum said.

Beuerman and Owens said they are hoping to be open by late August and will be operating on an all-volunteer staff.

In the meantime, the venue on New Bridge Street is being painted by volunteers like Deborah Koch.

 

“Something (about volunteering) came up on my Facebook page and I thought, I’m a retired teacher so I have time to do this,” Koch said while painting on Thursday.

With the designs of Ellie Macintosh, volunteers like Koch were working to get geometric art on the walls, including overlapping circles.

One of the paint jobs already finished is a calming room, for children with sensory sensitivity. The room sports a cool blue color and is closed off from the open space of the museum, allowing the child to take a break and regroup, Beuerman said.

While the exhibits are not up just yet, Owens said an animal room, an art room, a party room and a military room are just some of the interactive spaces planned for the museum.

Beuerman said the museum will be an educational experience where children learn without realizing it.

“I think we’ll find parents and adults will have just as much fun as the children,” Beuerman said.

This month, Beuerman added the board is waiting to hear word on some grants the museum has applied for for further funding. Owens said the hardest part of getting the museum going was finding the money.

“Getting the building and even getting our board to go out and ask for money (was hard),” Owens said.

And while some of the labor has come from volunteers, other costs, including the exhibits themselves, took quite an investment. Owens said visitors to the museum probably will not realize the huge cost of the exhibits, which can amount to thousands of dollars.

“People would never believe the prices of this stuff,” Owens joked.

Still, there are things the museum is looking for in terms of donations before it can open. Some of the items include letter boards, chalkboard easels and cleaning supplies. If you are interested in making a donation, visit the museum’s wish list on Amazon at Zing Zumm, children’s museum wish list.

To help paint or for more information on the museum’s progress, visit its Facebook page “Zing Zumm, Children’s Museum of Jacksonville.”

 

 

Reporter Kelsey Stiglitz can be reached at 910-219-8453 or kstiglitz@JDNews.com.