In 2006, a small group of Fairbanksans began discussing the idea of opening a children's museum in the Interior. Founders began researching the children's museum industry and began the process of bringing the community into the discussion.
In 2011, the initial Board of Directors was expanded and the Fairbanks Children's Museum received their 501(c)3 nonprofit status from the IRS. They joined the Association of Children's Museums that year. The Museum Without Walls program began with an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from the community. Monthly events, featuring play-based exhibits and creative activities, helped to spread the news about the Fairbanks Children's Museum around Fairbanks and the surrounding areas.
In 2013, the University of Alaska Museum of the North invited the Fairbanks Children's Museum to open a temporary "mini-museum" over the winter of 2013-2014. Families had regular access to the museum while fundraising and exhibit building continued. During this time, preparations began to create a great space in our "forever home" in downtown Fairbanks.
After almost 10 years of planning, countless board meetings, and numerous fundraising endeavors, the Fairbanks Children’s Museum opened its doors to the Fairbanks community on January 31, 2015. Over 1,600 people visited the museum on opening day which was generously sponsored by Flint Hill Resources. Within the first year, the museum had over 35,000 visitors and 892 family memberships. The museum continues to focus on bridging the gap between learning and play while we grow as a great family resource for communities in the Interior!