Day in the District
Posted by Christine B. on September 28, 2009 - 2:38pm

My kids and I decided to have an adventure this weekend and we walked to Day in the District. Our first destination was the Amon Carter and by the time we arrived, at quarter to ten in the morning, there was already a long line of people waiting to get in to the museum. The morning was beautiful and clear and we sat on the steps of the museum gazing at the sunken garden looking towards downtown waiting for the museum to open. Once it opened we received our wrist bands for admission to all the participating institutions (great idea) and went in, greeted by volunteers and staff eager for their day to begin. After viewing the print exhibition and then seeking out every bronze horse sculpture we could find in the other galleries (and thank you to the guard who directed us to many points of interest ) as well as nibbling on a few cookies while walking by the gift shop, we crossed the street to the Fort Worth Community Art Center. There, we viewed exhibitions by local artists and my kids delighted in making small cardboard houses for Fort Worth’s Preservation of the City exhibition, although they were a little miffed that they had to leave their houses since they are so used to taking their creations with them but they endured (thanks to Nicky for helping them out with their houses, they loved it) and we headed to the Cowgirl Museum.

Along the way they had many questions about the Fort Worth Science and History Museum and they could not understand why we couldn’t go in, despite my lengthy explanation that construction was still in progress and despite the obvious evidence of workers clearly moving earth and hauling materials to and from the structure. But I reassured them that we would in fact visit when construction was completed and wouldn’t that be exciting! Dull stares. To my kids this process is taking far too long. When we arrived at the Cowgirl museum, we were greeted again by staff and volunteers and directed to various places and just missed a play or choir of some kind. My kids liked everything about the museum, the teepee, the chuck wagon, the mechanical horse you can ride in one of the exhibition areas, my daughter loved the bedazzled riding outfits in one of the displays and this was the one museum I really had to drag them out of, they could have played there all day! Luckily the large city bus parked outside the museum was enough of a draw to get them out of there. My daughter and I had already developed some blisters on our heels from our poor choice of footwear so the bus provided a break for our feet and was great fun to ride in as well. By the way, every museum had band aids! And we definitely needed them.

The bus dropped us off between the Kimbell Art Museum and the Modern, our next two destinations. We headed to the Modern out of habit and for more band aids and to grab some lunch since it was getting late and three rumbling bellies needed some sustenance. After saying hello to everyone we know at the Modern, we briefly glided through the galleries. My kids know the work in the galleries very well and weren’t interested in lingering but pointed out their favorite works as we meandered which is always a fun game for me to overhear. Before leaving the Modern we had to visit Richard Serra’s Vortex and make some noise. My kids never get enough time in and around this piece. We took our time listening to everyone else’s voices and sounds echo in the Vortex before heading across the street.

We sat outside the Kimbell for a moment to look at all the people strolling down Darnell Street and watch people take pictures in front of the Juan Miro sculpture. Once inside the museum, we followed the flow of human traffic upstairs and wondered towards the paper skull, my son was really looking forward to being inside the skull but the line of people was daunting enough to turn our sights elsewhere. At this point in the day there were so many people and so many activities that we were somewhat overwhelmed and the pond beckoned. We slipped our shoes off and cooled our tired, blistered feet in the pond while watching the costumed coyotes from a play traipse over the Kimbell’s lawn.

In that moment of calm, dangling our feet in the pond, (I am always a little hesitant to do this because I consider the entire structure of the Kimbell Art Museum a work of art and to do something as carefree as dip your feet in cold water feels …sort of…. well, wrong!) I thought to myself how wonderful the day was, bright, sunny and pleasant. My kids had made it through many museums with great museum behavior and I marveled at how many families came out for Day in the District. Every museum we entered we were greeted and welcomed. I was struck with how efficient and easy everything operated considering there were hoards of people. Mostly, I was thankful for the day, for all the people who put on plays or played in bands, for all the volunteers who helped at the various museums and for all the museum staff members who gave up their Saturdays with their families to work. And I thought it was a great partnership between all the museums and the transportation department. Lastly, I thought it was a very worthy event to hold for the Fort Worth community. Our only regret was that we didn’t get to go to the Log Cabin Village. By 3pm my kids were ready for a nap (I was ready for a nap) and we were down to our last set of band aids and still had to walk home, which just seemed a bit too far when you are hot and tired, even though we were only four blocks away from our house.

My kids and I took a few pictures during our day and these ones below were taken while we were sitting outside the Kimbell gazing towards the Modern. We have many photos like this in our family archives, aimed the wrong way, feet, limbs, shadows, ground… and ultimately, this is a record that next time we go on an adventure we will choose more appropriate footwear!

Day in the District

Day in the District