Amazing World of Dr. Seuss opens to the public

6/8/2017 | G. Michael Dobbs

Category: June

Reminder Publications photo by G. Michael Dobbs

A week prior, the murals were being touched up and workers were busy finishing exhibits, but all was ready for the opening on June 3 of the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum, the only museum dedicated to the life and work of Springfield native Theodor Geisel, better known to generations of readers as Dr. Seuss.

Directing the final touches was artist Josh Simpson who is the museum’s designer, who called the assignment “challenging and complex.”

He added that Seuss’s illustrations are a “bottomless fountain for detail and expression” and expressed admiration for “the way he can invest a line with wit.”

Karen Fisk, the Springfield Museum’s director of Public Relations & Marketing, gave Reminder Publications an early look at the three-floor museum before its opening. She noted the first floor is designed to be family-friendly where “everything is playable and interactive.”

There is a sculpture of a Seussian motorcycle on which children can sit, a photo opportunity with the Cat in the Hat and a sound exhibit with Horton, the elephant who heard a Who, among many other features.

The first floor is about Geisel’s life in Springfield, including the buildings that later influenced him and played a role in his books. There is the reproduction of a wall on which he drew pictures as a child with a special interactive computer screen that allows visitors to the museum to draw their own pictures.

The Forest Park Zoo where his father worked as the superintendent and the brewery the family owned are both represented in this section of the museum.

On the second floor are exhibit areas that feature artifacts and documents from Geisel’s life. Correspondence between him and his nephew Ted Owen will be available to read providing insight into his life and creative process.

His drawing desk and studio have been re-created and there is an exhibit room dedicated the creation of the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden.

Fisk said the success of the sculpture garden helped propel the concept of having a museum forward.

The basement area will be used for daily educational programming – arts, crafts and literacy.

The museum, though, is “only the beginning” she explained in presenting Geisel’s life.

“There will be exhibits in the history museum. We want to tell the full story of Dr. Seuss,” she said.

Special events celebrated the opening of the museum on June 3, including a parade on Mulberry Street. In addition to the giant Cat in the Hat balloon, the parade included a variety of vintage cars (including the Picknelly Rolls Royce), the PVTA Trolley, a fire engine, and the Peter Pan double-decker bus. The Cat in the Hat and Thing 1 and Thing 2 were passengers.

A long list of local organizations including the Community Music School and the Springfield Thunderbirds also participated in the opening.

The parade ended in a ceremonial ribbon cutting with the Cat in the Hat.

On June 17, the Hartford Marathon Foundation will host the Mad Dash on Mulberry Street, described as “A Silly, Not at all Chilly, Just a Little Hilly Family 5K.” The Mad Dash includes a half-mile kids fun run at the Quadrangle Green and a 5K run/walk. Festivities for that event include entertainment all along the 5K course, Seussian carnival games, a children’s bubble dance party,  a pop-up art studio, meet and greets with the Cat in the Hat and Thing 1 & Thing 2 and a character breakfast for which tickets are required.

Those who register for the race will also receive free entry to the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum. A portion of the race entry fees benefit the museum.

For more information on the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss Museum, go to For more info on the Mad Dash on Mulberry Street, visit

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