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I live in a college town which is a resource for various hidden gems. Stanford University is home to the Iris & Gerald Cantor Museum and its Rodin Scuplture Garden. The Sculpture Garden is located to the side of the museum's front entrance and is open to the public at all times. Picnic tables sit under large leafy tress and invite you to stay a while to enjoy the beauty and magnificence of the Rodin masterpieces. On this particular day, I visited with my older son to share one on one bonding time before he heads off to college.
As a mother, I have dragged my boys to museums both large and small to expand their horizons and show them that there is more to life than video games and action movies. Photos of trips to the Louvre, the Orsay, the Met, the Hermitage and many other museums fill our family albums. Reading King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, followed by a trip to the Arms and Armor wing at the Met, brings history to life and teaches without "teaching." It can be loads of fun.
It is never to young to expose children to the arts. Bring your child to a museum and explore. Don't try to see everything but expose your child to as much as they can take in depending on their age. You would be surprised at the dialogue thet gets started.
Even if you don't have children, take advantage of the museums in your city. It's ironic how we can take these institutions for granted and save them for when we have guests in town. Museums work very hard to make visits exciting to visitors. The De Young in San Francisco hosts Friday Nights at the De Young taking an interdisclinary approach to the arts with live music, poetry readings, etc. You may want to think about this for a date night?