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New Centennial Exploration Exhibit at Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia to Open to the Public on October 18

Exhibit funded in part by $289,000 NEH grant

WASHINGTON (October 14, 2008)—On Saturday, October 18, Please Touch Museum, the Children’s Museum of Philadelphia, will open its newly renovated and expanded museum at Memorial Hall in Fairmount Park and unveil its new exhibit, Centennial Exploration, to the public. Centennial Exploration celebrates the Centennial Exhibition of 1876 through the child’s-eye view. The Exhibition was the first major World’s Fair to be held in the United States and commemorated the 100th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. Notably, the museum’s new location, Memorial Hall, is one of the last remaining structures from the Centennial Exhibition of 1876.

Please Touch Museum received $289,000 in funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) toward the production and installation of the exhibit through the Endowment’s Family and Youth Programs in American History grant program, a part of the We the People program. These grants support programming that encourages intergenerational learning about and reflection on significant topics in U.S. history and culture and is tailored to youth and/or family audiences at museums, libraries, historical societies and sites, parks, and other places in the community.

“The Centennial Exploration exhibit at Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia captures an important moment in our nation’s history,” said NEH Chairman Bruce Cole. “The Centennial Exhibition of 1876 marked the emergence of the United States as a world leader in technological innovation with the introduction of inventions such as the typewriter and telephone. Now students, families, and citizens will have an opportunity to explore the history surrounding the Fair and Memorial Hall.”

Additionally, five other exhibits will be unveiled on October 18 at the public opening of Please Touch Museum: Roadside Attractions; Flight Fantasy; City Capers; River Adventures; and Wonderland—an updated version of the Alice at Please Touch Museum exhibition, which received a $220,460 NEH grant in 1998. For more information about Centennial Exploration and any of the other exhibits at Please Touch Museum, visit www.pleasetouchmuseum.org.

Please Touch Museum® is dedicated to enriching the lives of children by creating learning opportunities through play. Recognized locally and nationally as one of the best children’s museums, Please Touch is open Mondays-Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $15.00 for adults and children age one and over. Children under one are free. Please Touch Museum at Memorial Hall, 4231 Avenue of the Republic, opens to the public on Saturday, Oct. 18, 2008. For more information, please call 215-581-3181, or visit www.pleasetouchmuseum.org.

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About the National Endowment for the Humanities

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: www.neh.gov.

Media Contacts: Office of Communications at (202) 606-8446 or info@neh.gov