“At Explore More, I see children use their imaginations and play out their thoughts and dreams. I watch the future!”
— Kathy Whitten, EMDM Board of Directors

A REGIONal Treasure

If you've followed the history of Explore More Discovery Museum over the past fifteen years, there's no doubt that its foundation has been firmly rooted in community partnerships. 

The impact of this regional learning resource starts with the youngest members of our audience and overflows to the community at large.


by the numbers:

  • Over 80,000 annual visitors!

  • Target audience: children ages 1–12 and their families/caregivers

  • Monthly free admission events and scholarship memberships; 15% of admissions are sponsored

  • Museum admission fee is among the lowest of 7 children’s museums in Virginia

  • 60% earned income (admissions, membership, field trips, birthday parties, programs and store), 40% contributed income (donations, grants and sponsorships)

  • Over 300 volunteers give approximately 10,000 hours to support the museum annually

Future Workforce:

  • Rich learning environment promotes problem solving, creativity and teamwork

  • SOL-based field trip programs extend classroom instruction

  • 8,500 annual field trip visits (regional audience includes Augusta, Shenandoah, Page, West Virginia)

  • Teen volunteer/youth development programs

  • College/university student internships and practicum experiences

  • Local experts who share their knowledge and skills to instruct, create or maintain exhibits

Economic Development:

  • Major attraction in downtown; 35% of children’s museums are keystones in community revitalization projects

  • Member of Association of Children’s Museums, a national organization that markets Explore More across the United States

  • Area businesses promote the museum as a valuable educational and cultural resource when recruiting new employees to the Valley.

  • The museum regularly shares its organizational story with visiting groups such as VA Main Street, university alumni associations, civic clubs and state leadership conferences.