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Bib’s World opens at TCMU

A new adventure for children opens in Greenville this week.

Bib’s World opens Friday, April 29 at The Children’s Museum of the Upstate. The exhibit features a new outdoor, interactive space that will be a permanent part of the museum, TCMU’s president and CEO Nancy Halverson said.

Bib’s World is named after Bibendum, Michelin’s Michelin Man mascot, and includes a variety of play structures made from tires and other sustainable materials, multi-cultural elements including interactive pathways with maps and signs, a two-story futuristic interactive cityscape, and a wheelchair-accessible merry-go-round for children — the first of its kind in the United States.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony for the exhibit, which is a gift from the Michelin Corporate Foundation, will be held Friday morning.

“When we first started talking to Michelin about it, they used the term ‘sustainable mobility,’” Halverson said. “For them, it’s about moving goods and services and doing that in the most environmentally friendly way.”

But Halverson said those involved in the project also thought about children who have mobility issues. That’s one of the reasons why the exhibit includes accessible play structures, like the zero entry orbiter.

“It’s flush to the ground so a child in a wheelchair can enter,” she said.

Halverson added that making a facility or an exhibit compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act does not mean it will be welcoming, only accessible. TCMU strives to go beyond that.

“We want it to feel special,” Halverson said.

A city-themed climbing structure features a mini replica of the Liberty Bridge.

“We’re trying to raise money for a wheelchair elevator for that,” Halverson said.

Bib’s World includes a stage area for programming and shade for playscapes. Easy access to the area is offered from the museum through the first floor.

“You will come in through a new gallery,” Halverson said. “On the wall, we will have a mosaic — approximately 600 drawings of what kids think of mobility. It really is an extension of the facility.”

The Children’s Museum of the Upstate is the country’s seventh-largest children’s museum and first children’s museum to become a Smithsonian Affiliate. For more information, visit