Carole Charnow Grainger, the Boston Children’s Museum, a Virtual Trivia Night, and Bedford

Click the image to learn more about the Children’s Museum’s virtual Trivia Party

This Thursday night – June 16,  from 6 to 7 pm – the Boston Children’s Museum is hosting their first-ever virtual fundraising event, Trivia Night.  Because this fundraiser is virtual, it has the ability for anyone, anywhere, to participate.  You may not know it but the Boston Children’s Museum curriculum is integrated into Bedford’s community as well.

Click this link to join in for some “PG” family fun, and let’s show Bedford resident and Children’s Museum CEO Carole Charnow Grainfer what her hometown is made of!

How do the Boston Children’s Museum and Bedford Intersect?

Author’s Note: Carole Charnow Grainger has been a friend, neighbor, and advocate on Bedford’s Save Fawn Lake Committee, for over a decade.  I knew a bit of her background and that she was CEO of the Boston Children’s Museum, but after delving in deeper and talking with her today, I’m embarrassed to say that I. Had. No. Idea.  No idea of what she has done and what she is accomplishing with the Boston Children’s Museum, what BCM  means to the Boston community, and literally around the world.  I’m in awe.  Our little village of Bedford has a superstar among us.

The Boston Children’s Museum (BCM) was founded in 1913 in Jamaica Plain. It is the second oldest children’s museum in the country and the very first interactive museum of its kind.  The goal of the museum was to address the needs of children who did not have full access to public education.  The first year they opened they had 65,000 visitors.  What is so extraordinary about this number is that the visitors were children who managed to get to the museum on their own.  The founders donated natural history items from local museums, such as the Peabody Museum, and it was a wonderful place of exploration and discovery.

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Child development, socially, physically, and mentally, along with crucial growth and brain development are formed in the early years.  This development is based around exploration and discovery of the world around them.  The Covid-19 quarantine and racial tensions add extra fears and anxieties to parents and children alike which is impacting low-income families the most.  These families don’t always have adequate housing, health care, and food.  Parents are working to stay afloat and now need to home school their children.  Internet access is difficult for many not to mention the lack of physical hardware needed for homeschooling…and that’s where Carole Charnow and the Boston Children’s Museum come into play.

For many years they have worked on creating an online curriculum called “Beyond the Chalkboard” which is used in 120 countries around the world!  “100 Ways to Play” is a school readiness program.  Educators have come together to develop art projects, storytelling, YouTube videos on cooking, and a brand new “Daily Activity Break” which consists of 150 activities for parents to add to the daily schoolwork (produced in several languages to boot).  “In motion” offers activity kits based on fine motor skills and social development; they will be distributed to children most affected.

The BCM website contains blogs, interviews, fun worksheets, games and activities, and resources for educators and parents.  And, amazingly, all this is happening with zero revenue since March.

The museum staff is so excited to be opening soon be under Phase III, at limited capacity.  With that opening come all the measures required to keep children, families, and staff safe and healthy.  All staff, from the CEO on down, will take cleaning shifts to keep the museum sterilized to hospital standards.

All those wonderful interactive exhibits the children will play with?  BCM is purchasing 4 sets of everything.  Everything.  Balls, blocks, dress-up clothes, the ‘food’ for the Bodega, etc…. This enables BCM to constantly rotate the props.  Extra staff is needed to manage each exhibit and visitor flow. More staff to swap out the exhibits after every group goes through.  Staff to sterilize those exhibits and get them back into circulation.

Museum operating costs will now be higher than ever yet only a limited amount of visitors will be allowed in, resulting in a drastic decrease of money collected through ticket entry…how ironic is this?  Hard to see the light at the end of that tunnel.  Add to it the federal government funding cuts…we all know who suffers the most.   People of color.  The children.  The circle that BCM is working so hard to break has the potential of circling around again.     But under Charnow’s leadership, BCM has no intention of throwing up their hands and walking away!

More about Virtual Trivia Night ~ Thursday, June 16 from 6 to 7 pm

From 6 to 7 pm on Thursday, June 16, the Boston Children’s Museum’s Young Professionals Council will host a virtual Trivia Night, an optimal opportunity to hang out virtually with friends, show off your unique knowledge, and help support the Museum.

Although the building has been closed due to Covid-19, the Boston Children’s Museum continues to serve children and families throughout the area.

You’ll be playing for a chance to win bragging rights and goofy prizes. Click the link, join in for some “PG” family fun, and show what Bedford is made of! 

Tickets are $20 per household, and dress is Covid-Creative.  Advanced registration is necessary and tickets are limited. The video link will be sent prior to the event.

Jonny Minogue, the house Quizminatrix and Karaoke Hostess at Club Cafe, Boston’s premier LGBTQ entertainment venue will host Thursday’s event. Before COVID-termission, Jonny helmed the mic Tuesday and Wednesday nights for five years, throwing out questions, answers, and plenty of sass.
Since COVID-termission, Minogue hosts a virtual trivia night every other Wednesday evening at 8 pm, on Facebook Live.

To learn more about the Boston Children’s Museum, please visit

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