Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum Receives International Award for its Poughkeepsie Waterfront Market
TORONTO, ONT. – The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum has been recognized by the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) with the 2019 Leading Edge Award for Business Practice for its creation and operation of the Poughkeepsie Waterfront Market.
ASTC is the international professional association for all science centers and museums worldwide, and is comprised of over 350 museums from 20 countries. Now in their 15th year, the Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge Awards are presented annually by ASTC to recognize extraordinary accomplishments in business practice, visitor experience, and leadership in the field of science centers and museums worldwide. The award is presented at the 2019 ASTC Annual Conference in Toronto, Ontario (Canada) on September 21.
The 2019 Roy L. Shafer Leading Edge Award for Business Practice recognizes the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum’s effort to fight urban food insecurity in the City of Poughkeepsie by making fresh, locally sourced food accessible to city residents and families; ensuring affordability of food options; and educating the public on nutrition and meal preparation using food available at the market. The project grew from Museum’s strategic shift toward deepening community wide impact and engagement.
The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum opened the Poughkeepsie Waterfront Market in 2017, and in doing so, became the first children’s museum in the United States to open a public farmers market as a strategy to reduce food insecurity among the families it serves. “Here in Poughkeepsie, the impact of their work is significant. According to the USDA, MHCM is located at the epicenter of one of the worst food deserts in the country,” states City of Poughkeepsie Mayor, Rob Rolison. “In fact, there is no grocery store in this part of our City, and too often low-income residents have no options to even acquire fresh food to feed their families. Because the Museum works with some of our most vulnerable inner-city families, it saw firsthand how food insecurity and hunger was affecting its neighbors and the young children it serves.” Since 2017, it has become a national model for museums looking to increase their impact on their local communities.
The Poughkeepsie Waterfront Market is a seasonal farmers market that runs weekly on Monday afternoons from June through September in the Pavilion of the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum. The Market is open to the public and features farm fresh vegetables, fruits, eggs, poultry, baked goods, maple products, honey, pickles, beer and other agricultural products available from local Hudson Valley farms. With a grant from MVP Healthcare, the Market was able to become a certified SNAP Market in 2018 in addition to participating in the WIC Farmers Market Nutrition Program. Combined, these two programs help to ensure the affordability of fresh produce and farm products for low-income individuals and families.
Named Hudson Valley Magazine’s “2019 and 2017 Best Museum” and Hudson Valley’s “2018 and 2017 Favorite Kid-Friendly Museum,” the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum is the ideal destination for families with young children. With exhibits that focus on early literacy, art, STEM, and the local community, the museum provides an educationally rich environment through which children have the opportunity to develop foundational skills, to engage in purposeful play, and to develop interpersonal connections. The Museum is located in the heart of the historic waterfront in Poughkeepsie, nestled between two city parks, just steps away from the Poughkeepsie Metro-North Train Station, Walkway Elevator and fabulous restaurants. The Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm and Sundays from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, and on select Monday holidays. Admission is $10.00 per person. Children under 1 year are free. Visit mhcm.org or call (845) 471-0589 for more information.