Pretend City

If you ever find yourself in Irvine, California and you have little kids you should try to squeeze in a trip to Pretend City. This great little Children's museum is housed in a big warehouse. Inside they have built  a child sized city comprised of about 15 permanent exhibits where kids can pretend to work, earn money, shop and live.  This place really takes pretend play to a whole new level.

Our favorite exhibits include:

  • Doctor's Office:  Great for playing doctor, nurse, and patient. It includes a table, x-rays,  coats, masks, etc.

  • Farm: Fake trees to pick apples, fake dirt (rubber bark) and shovels for planting, and a real incubator with baby chicks hatching from eggs.

  • House: Inside the house is a living room with pictures  and a documentary type video running on the television that describes the life of a local family. The video changes periodically. The house also has a bedroom, kitchen and bathroom play area.

  • Restaurant:  This place has a fully stocked kitchen with fake food, toy ovens, and sinks. It has a cash register and counter seating. It also has table seating.

  • Amphitheatre: Here bench seating is provided for parents so that they can sit back and relax while their little one takes the stage. At this exhibit kids can find instruments and costumes to make the performance even more memorable. Those who don't like being on stage can play with the stages light and sound board instead.

  • Grocery Store: The grocery store is by far my kids favorite place. Here they can shop from the refrigerated section all the way to the produce  aisle.  They can also work in the store if they want to and ring up other kids at the cash registers.

These best part about this place is that it tends to be pretty well staffed. There are lots of people around to help all those little professionals put back all that  stuff they were playing with.


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