I know how hard it is to get young kids out of the house to go somewhere - even quick outings require you to pack enough snacks, diapers, and toys to make you think you’ll be gone for a week. And who wants to wrestle kids in and out of carseats just to find out that your destination isn’t kid-friendly? That’s why I’ve decided to visit Triangle area sites to see if they’re worth your trip. I won’t use a rating system but I’ll try to describe what you’ll see well enough for you to decide if your kids would find it interesting. I’ll also give you the heads up on bathrooms, stroller accessibility and any other SNAFUs I encounter.


Durham Arts Council - Durham

Special ExhibitCircus: Costume, Prop, and Baggage    

Arts Council Website

     This exhibit of large acrylic paintings runs until September 25. You can view the paintings anytime the building is open - Monday through Saturdays 9am to 9pm.

     There are almost 20 paintings on view in this display. The works in the exhibit have been described as large, and they are at about 2ft. x 1ft. I guess when I heard about the show I expected wall-size paintings. The paintings are posed almost like snapshots and they focus mostly on the behind-the-scenes lives of circus workers. They especially seem to portray the relationships that have developed in the midst of a circus environment. These very colorful paintings - some of which contain animals - are good for attracting young children's attention.

     Three of the paintings are done on large panels (5ft. x 4ft.) that sit on the floor. One of these - my preschooler's favorite - is pictured above. This is also the only panel that is painted on both sides. On the opposite side the carousel horses are walking through a meadow with the circus in the distance.


        The facility itself is nice with two galleries - one upstairs and one downstairs. There is an elevator to get you to the upstairs gallery if you're using a stroller. Classrooms for the youth programs at the Durham Arts Council are also upstairs.

        The Durham Arts Council is a quick visit so you'll probably want to combine it with another attraction in the area.

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