I love the 805. I love the community, I love the area and I love everything about it. So when one of my clients, Iris Ilao, who is a Board of Directors member at KidSTREAM, called me to feature it in the #805life blog, I right away jumped on the opportunity. KidSTREAM is an interactive kids museum located in Camarillo. I brought my five girls to check out the museum. We were greeted by Kristie Akl, President and Michael Shanklin, Executive Director to talk about the museum and get a tour of the property. As soon as I entered the building, KidStream made me feel like a kid again.
The Vision Room is a 1,500 sq. ft indoor and outdoor space with playful themed areas in every corner for children to play and learn rather than looking at their screens all day. As I walked around, the details of each section was enlightening. A small room in the corner had a tiny window which was once a projector room. It is now a room where the constellations are painted and illuminated. On the other side of the room was a campground with wood log cushions and a teepee tent to sit and read or play with the surrounding toys. Another area was a makeshift Mission Control to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. The room was filled with donations of musical instruments and structures built by donors and board of directors.
My girls ran to every section to play with musical instruments, try on astronaut helmets and uniforms, pretend to be pirates and try grabbing flying pom poms and scarves. They played with everything! I can see the excitement in their eyes as well as in the eyes of Kristie and Michael. We stood there watching them laugh and play with all of the sensory boards and gadgets. I’m sure all of the adults in the room thought the same thing, “KidSTREAM make me feel like a kid again”. Since the pandemic they have been open with reservations. The Vision Room is a sneak peak of what the entire property will be.
Looks a Little Familiar
KidSTREAM took up the space of the old Camarillo library. The library had been abandoned for 10 years before it was set to be the new location of KidSTREAM. It was a generous donation from the city of Camarillo, and once the city learned of their mission, they became major advocates for the museum. The city envisioned the museum to help the community in education, entertainment and economic growth.
The walls and interior structure are still there which gave it a very nostalgic 1970’s feel. It seems fitting to have the museum here since the location has strong educational roots. The museum will be the next generation of interactive learning as I remember going through the dewey decimal system to walk through rows of bookcases. It’s a far cry from Googling “Things to do in the 805”. They have big plans for this museum. In the past 5 years, they have had fundraising events to meet their goals. Attendees reminisce of their childhood walking through the walls and open space of the old library. As touched as they were, the wallets open in hopes to see this project come to fruition.
There is no better investment of time and money than in the life of a child. They are the future. ~ Alma Powell
The Vision Room isn’t the main reason why my client reached out to me. I saw it as a great fun place for children to explore and experiment, but it’s really a test room for exhibits in the bigger space. The idea of KidStream began years ago. As a mom of three, Kristie felt there was a need to have a learning interactive space in the 805 area. The idea of KidSTREAM came from her hour long ride home after a day at KidSpace in Pasadena.
As a former high school science teacher, she found that students were not getting enough of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) knowledge outside of school. They have a vision to create a space for children to fall in love with science again, to build something out of nothing and to educate and inspire the new generation. Technology has changed the way we learn and teach. However, the curiosity and desire to explore has diminished to a small screen. The museum will give the tools for students and teachers to light that spark in a dynamic learning experience.
Big Plans, Big Hearts
The plan is to renovate the 2.5 acre property. The interior is 16,000 square feet which will include art, music and literacy exhibits, science, space and creative exhibits and an elements gallery. The outdoor space is 19,000 square feet to give children the chance to run around and explore all of the exhibits, treehouse, fort building, geometric art and ocean themed. In addition to the exhibits, there are also plans for an amphitheater, a hedge maze. They are hoping the renovation will be done and open the museum in 2022.
All the plans and visions would not come to fruition if it weren’t for the donations. Every way possible they are looking for donors and contributions to meet their goal. If you would like to donate, please go to their website.
Like I said, I love the 805 and the way our 805 community comes together to help others in need. KidSTREAM has a promising future in the 805. I hope you and your children will visit KidSTREAM to make you feel like a kid again. If you have any questions regarding KidSTREAM or real estate in the area, then please contact me.
Watch as we take a tour of KidSTREAM in Camarillo