Kids have a “Revolutionary” time at American Independence Museum

On Thursday, September 5, Exeter Hospital will present Revolutionary Story Time! at the American Independence Museum.

Designed to entertain kids, ages 3 to 5, and their families, the free series features story-telling, live music and play-time.

“It’s a 2-hour program with a little bit of structure and plenty of time and space in which to play,” said museum Executive Director Emma Bray. “We want to invite families to visit us and enjoy our property.”

Describing the museum “as more than a cultural institution,” Bray said it is important that their programs “engage people of all ages.”

“It is very important that people view us as a community resource, which is why our partnership with Exeter Hospital is so important,” she said. “Their support enables us to create a fun and lively program for young kids and their parents and caregivers.”

According to Jenn McGowan of Exeter Hospital, the museum’s emphasis on community reflects a shared core value.

“Both organizations believe in a healthy and strong community, and we can take a meaningful step toward that by working together,” she said. “It’s great to see kids and families taking advantage of this wonderful program.”

On the first Thursday of each month through December from 2 to 4 pm at the museum’s Folsom Tavern at 164 Water Street in Exeter, kids and families are entertained by stories and live music. After the 30+ minute program, parent-supervised playtime includes imaginary play, colonial games and period dress-up.

Due to the historical nature of the Tavern, strollers are not encouraged, as the building is not handicapped accessible. Reservations are accepted but not required. 

Home to a world-class collection of 3,000 historic artifacts, the museum welcomes more than 5,000 visitors annually and distinguishes itself with educational school programs and events that make history fun and relevant.

To learn more about Revolutionary Story Time!, or the museum, visit

Children, Families the Focus in July at American Independence Museum

In July, children and families are a big focus at the American Independence Museum in Exeter.

On Tuesday, July 2, The Provident Bank is sponsoring free admission for residents of any age from SAU 16, which includes Brentwood, East Kingston, Exeter, Kensington, Newfields, and Stratham. On Saturday, July 6, free admission will also be made available to SAU 16 residents, courtesy of Kennebunk Savings.

“Both banks are also sponsoring the free admission for SAU 16 residents on the first Tuesday and Saturday in August, respectively,” said museum Executive Director Emma Bray. “This is a wonderful opportunity for local residents to see first hand the improvements we have made within our museum as well as our new exhibits.”

Presented by Exeter Hospital, a special patriotic sing-along edition of Revolutionary Story Time! takes place on Thursday, July 4 from 11am to 1 pm.  At this event, families and guests of all ages are invited to Folsom Tavern to celebrate Independence Day with song led by a colonial reenactor, patriotic cake, and colonial games. The event is free and part of a year long series, which takes place on the first Thursday of each month through December.

The largest event annually hosted by the museum, the American Independence Festival takes place on Saturday, July 13 and is expected to attract thousands. Presented by Newburyport Bank, the event features everything from traditional craft demonstrations and battle re-enactments to a beer garden, live music, games, local food, art and craft marketplace, and more.  

The Festival also marks the conclusion of the museum’s Revolutionary Kids Camp, which begins Tuesday, July 9. In this full-day living history experience, youth (ages 9 – 12) immerse themselves in the past and assume the role of a real 18th century Exeter resident, complete with colonial clothing.  At the Festival, youth show off what they have learned in camp, which concludes Friday, July 12.

“It’s a busy month for us and one in which I hope we see many new faces,” added Bray.  “We want people to see the museum as ‘their’ space.”

Home to a world-class collection of 3,000 historic artifacts, American Independence  Museum welcomes more than 5,000 visitors annually and distinguishes itself with educational school programs and events that make history fun and relevant.