EXPLORE OUR SPACE
It's Time To Play
The Cayton offers 21,000 square feet of discovery-based exhibits, from a real-life helicopter to a miniature marketplace to immersive augmented reality —and so much more. Add on art studios, a state-of-the-art theatre, and adaptable community spaces: you and your child can experience the Cayton differently every time.
— Launch Your
— Let’s Help
— Reach For
— Reflect On
— Together We
Launch Your is a special space for our youngest visitors (ages 0-2)—who are just beginning to explore and discover newfound skills and strengths. A moving mobile of colors and shapes brings the ceiling to life as little ones slide, crawl, and make new friends.
Crawl, Climb & Grow
Our littlest guests stretch their minds and bodies as they climb over hills and valleys, make faces in the mirror, and meet new friends! This special enclosed section gives babies and toddlers a safe, engaging space to practice crawling, walking, and getting to know their community.
Generously donated by Erwin Rautenberg Foundation Skyscape engages our youngest visitors and all of us who gaze upwards. With gently moving mobiles and a flock of artistic flying shapes, Skyscape combines color, movement, air, and whimsy to stimulate our senses and engage our minds.
Generously donated by Dr. Gabriel Chiu & Christine Chiu
Let’s Help teaches children the many ways they can serve and support their community as active citizens who help one another, respond, rescue, and play.
Jump into Community
Generously donated by the Danhakl Family Foundation
How do we measure up to our best selves? Jump into Community! Watch as a slow-motion video replays each jump attempt and records how much height visitors gain as they leap. Each time visitors return, they can challenge themselves to jump even higher and exceed their goal, gaining confidence and perseverance every time.
Fire stations are pillars in every community. They are home to our unsung heroes, who are brave enough to put themselves on the line every day for the safety of local citizens. At our own Cayton Fire Station, our visitors imagine themselves as real-life heroes in our communities. With an accompanying closet of bunker gear and fire hats, aspiring firefighters can play the part with pride as they practice responsibility through rescue.
To the Rescue!
Generously donated by DiPaola Family Foundation
Made from a recycled Coast Guard rescue boat, To the Rescue! floats in a ball-pit sea where young visitors imagine their roles as first responders. To the Rescue! prompts ideas of selflessness, community responsibility, and compassion for all those in need of help, as visitors work together with life-savers, vests, and ropes to jump to safety.
Generously donated by The Birkhofer Family,
The Freed Family, and Richard and Suzanne Norton.
This exhibit is more than a helicopter. Our Help-a-copter, powered by friends, is covered in chrome and shines its message of rescue throughout Let’s Help. When entering the Help-a-copter cockpit, visitors heed a call to action as first responders flying to rescue, fueled by the power of imagination.
Our Animal Hospital
Generously donated by VCA Animal Hospitals
Treating animals, fixing what is broken, and caring for animals in need: Our Animal Hospital provides accessible and imaginative ways to practice caretaking and healing. Children and youth can become veterinarians-- and the animals in need of care!-- at Our Animal Hospital. Costumes line the walls, and with an examination table, instruments, and more, the creative play possibilities are infinite.
The Community Market is a discovery-based space for our visitors to play, shop, and serve. Complete with a working scanner and register, the Market gives little visitors the opportunity to take turns playing the part of shopper, stocker, and cashier, helping them to understand what it means to serve in a community.
Generously donated by The Kallick Family
The Café is a place for our visitors to practice helping, serving, and providing for one another through play. The café food represents a diverse cuisine, so visitors can share their favorite holiday treats and family traditions with each other. Little visitors can pick up “farm-fresh” produce at the Market next door and bring their groceries straight to the table!
In Reach For, children discover their individual ability to achieve. These exhibits inspire children to test new heights and strive further with each visit. Reach For is our platform for visitors to see the world through new perspectives.
Suspended from the ceiling in a canopy of colorful ropes, the Courage Climber gives children opportunities to experience many different vantage points and perspectives. Climbers can safely reach different levels of the exhibit per their ability and work their way up to greater heights over time. Sinking circles, rocky valleys, flexible tunnels, and lookout perches join together in this exhibit of challenges and discoveries.
Through introspection, reflection, and connection, children learn to listen and observe the world around them. Reflect On provides the opportunity for our visitors to interact with each other gently, and practice being calm, quiet, and introspective. This area can be a great space for sensory sensitive visitors who need a break.
In Tune With Nature
This room uses immersive technology to recreate lively nature scenes to nurture our appreciation for the stillness and beauty of the environment. When you enter the space full of energy, movement and sound, butterflies scatter and leave the walls--but when you are quiet, still, and calm, the butterflies return, encouraging us to slow down, notice, look, and reflect.
Generously donated by The Braun Family
Inspired by the Telephone of the Wind in Japan, this is a very special and profound exhibit at the Cayton. A small, telephone booth-like space, the Hello Booth is filled with traditional, corded telephones. Calls can reach anywhere you desire because they’re activated by the most powerful and effective network in the world: your imagination.
Generously donated by The Perlstein Family
With touch, Ripple Effect shows the patterns of currents and flow. As the exhibit spins, so too do the suspended particles. The rotation produces patterns that resemble the currents of the ocean, the spirals of our galaxy, and the wonder of infinity. Calming, patterned, and quiet, the experience focuses us on thought, imagination, and observation.
Generously donated by Larry & Stacey Kohl
A profoundly moving exhibit in the museum, our Wishing Wall is created with inspiration from many cultures, sacred spaces, sites, and memorials throughout the world. Here, open-ended prompts invite children and adults to draw and write their own wishes, ideas, and thoughts, in any language or format. This wall prompts reflection, response, and questioning, evolving every day as it fills with the hopes and dreams of our visitors.
Glow With Us
Always glowing dimly, Glow with Us shines brighter with each hand that touches it. As little visitors add their hands to the wall, a symphony of sound, light, and vibration creates a full sensory experience that represents the way our inner light is magnified when we connect with others.
Generously donated by The Held Foundation
Here, a child’s reflection is represented infinitely, highlighting each person’s ability to make a difference simply with their existence. There are ripple effects to what one says, how one acts, and how one shows up in all parts of life; this space helps young people visualize the extraordinary impact of their presence.
Teamwork is at the heart of Together We, where exhibits are designed to encourage collaborative play, communication, and discovery to explore what is possible when we work together. Together We is a collection of exhibit experiences that you can do on your own, but the experience is amplified when done together with others. Together We is a space that reminds us that we need each other and celebrates the magic that happens when we come together.
All Systems Go!
Generously donated by Simms/Mann Family Foundation
This interactive Rube Goldberg-inspired ball machine engages children and adults of all ages, sizes, and abilities in a constantly moving process. Balls move upward with solo play, but visitors find the activity exponentially more complex and fun when working together as in a group.
***This exhibit is temporarily closed while it undergoes repairs. Stay tuned for updates ***
Generously donated by The Younes & Soraya Nazarian Family Foundation
A larger-than-life two-sided art and technology experience engages visitors instantly at Masterpiece Makers. On one side, every move you make triggers sweeping bursts of colorful light, and on the other, interchangeable magnets can be shaped and stacked in infinitely different ways to create a new network of patterns every time.
As Albert Einstein once said, “Play is the highest form of research.” The Wisdom Wall is where we aim to inspire by sharing the wisdom of great thinkers, artists, and leaders. This exhibit uses real train-station split-flap technology to share thousands of quotes every day, providing an ever-changing treasure trove of inspiration.
Together We Celebrate
Together We Celebrate is an enclosed, clear booth ready to be filled with celebration. Press the magic button and watch the confetti and colored fabric swirl all around the air. This experience illustrates how even the smallest actions can illuminate our surroundings and inspire joy in one another.
Bubbles, Bubbles, Bubbles
Generously donated by Sydney D. Holland Foundation
This exhibit allows visitors to create larger-than-life, iridescent bubbles. Little ones can work together to raise the bubble bar and blow through the shimmery layer to produce mesmerizing shapes that float throughout the museum space!
Leave Your Footprint
Generously donated by Jennifer & Curtis Cohen
Leave Your Mark features a ceiling projection that gives our visitors the opportunity to leave footprints for others to follow. Engaging virtual landscapes make visitors dance and chase the shifting patterns, leaping and turning as the environment responds to their movements.
Community spaces are just that: for the whole community. These spaces bring together people from all walks of life into a welcoming and accessible space, transforming for a wide range of events.
S. Mark Taper Foundation Brilliant Blue Room
Generously donated by S. Mark Taper Foundation
The S. Mark Taper Brilliant Blue Room seamlessly blends into the Cayton play space, combining creative aesthetic and functionality. It provides an adaptable space for after-school programs, art workshops, museum programming, and an endless variety of events tailored just for you. To book this space for your next celebration, click here.
Words cannot fully express our gratitude to all the donors who contributed to making the Cayton Children’s Museum possible. “Blades of Grass” adorned with the names of our donors of $25,000 and above run the length of our Lobby’s south wall, creating a garden of gratitude to our community of dreamers and supporters.
The Lounge and Nursing Nook
At the Cayton, we strive to create spaces that support, welcome, and encourage a family experience. The Lounge is where families rest and recharge in between play. Tucked just behind The Lounge is the Nursery Nook— our designated breastfeeding room for visitors who prefer some privacy while feeding their babies.
The Derfner Theater
Generously donated by The Derfner Foundation
Imagination leads the way in the Derfner Theater, the Cayton’s central place of gathering. Our carpeted Theater features Big Green Blocks generously donated by Bright Day, and transforms for story times, music and dance, and so much more. The Theater offers state-of-the-art media capacity and an adaptable environment for a wide range of events, providing an ideal space for product launches, fundraisers, and more elaborate celebrations. To book this space for your next event, click here.
Highly curated and thoughtfully imagined, the Cayton’s Museum Store is a reflection of all of the values and principles that live within the museum’s exhibits and programs. Costumes give children an opportunity to put themselves in the shoes of a first responder, veterinarian, or superhero in their own homes. Book titles by local authors educate visitors on universal values, injustice, and social responsibility. Exhibit-inspired toys like fire trucks and helicopters let them practice what they learn in the museum beyond our walls.
From puzzles to plush animals, every item sold in our store has been brought here with intention and purpose. And, as a 501c3 nonprofit organization, every dollar spent in the store goes back into the museum to underwrite free admission for L.A. County residents.
Kevin & Chelsea Washington Art Studio
Generously donated by Kevin & Chelsea Washington
The Kevin & Chelsea Washington Art Studio is our pivotal center for creativity. From our daily free art studio programs to compelling classes, the Art Studio invites visitors to explore, create, imagine, and play. Pick up a paintbrush, mold some clay, or gather materials to build a collage--anything is possible here.
Art Studio II
In Art Studio II, visitors don’t just make masterpieces--they become them. This studio is primarily used for our littlest creators at Art Crawls, where they put on paintable onesies or diapers and are free to paint the floors, walls, and whatever else they please. Masterful spills, globs, fingerprints, footprints and more fill the room with energy, joy, giggles, and inspiration.
The Grand Exit
Generously donated by Rayni & Branden Williams
Strike a pose in front of the massive mural, snap a photo and capture your memory in the most photogenic space of the museum. The Grand Exit is the place for a final gathering of groups, families, and events before leaving the museum, so our guests can say one final goodbye--until next time!