“So where do you want to go today? The Fire Museum or the Aquarium?” “The Fire Museum!!!” shouted the girls in unison. “It’s so much fun to drive the fire truck!”
And that settled it. Off we went for the second time in 3 days. No complaining from me. The admission is FREE for kids and only $6 for adults (compare this to $37 I would have paid at the Aquarium…)
The very affordable entertainment is not the only advantage. The North Charleston and American LaFrance Fire Museum is a modern facility filled with exciting fire education exhibits. From the 18 exquisitely restored antique fire pumpers to the fire truck simulator, from the fire pole slide to the smoke house hazard demonstration, there is something fun for everyone to do.
Here are the highlights:
The most popular activity for kids is a virtual drive in a brand new, authentic firetruck cabin. You start the simulation by touching a blue screen, then the engine roars, the seats vibrate, and the fire siren goes wild. You can push a different pedal to sound the horn out loud. The adrenaline kicks in as you wind your way to the busy city traffic all the way to the fire scene. Good job, future firefighter!
Think you know what can start up a house fire? Think again. After you watch the 15 minutes house fire hazards and prevention demo you’ll be amazed how easy it is to destroy a home. Luckily the show also gives you great tips to prevent such a disaster.
The firefighter training station has engaging hands-on exhibits. Can you hold onto a 300 lbs fire hose in an emergency? Prove it at the awesome LaFrance Fire Museum in North Charleston!
Fire! Fire! Fire! Everyone down the fire pole, then through the fire chute, c’mon let’s go put up that fire. Even Spot our little dalmation puppy toy is ready to lend a hand.
Grownups will be delighted to browse the country’s largest American LaFrance collection of fire apparatus, all perfectly restored to working conditions.
Like the 1857 Button and Blake 16 men hand pumper that required 30 volunteer firefighters to continuosly drive water into the tub then pump it out onto the fire. At this exhibit you can also get an audio simulation of a 19th century Charleston home fire rescue.
My favorite is the beautiful red and white Liberty, a 1911 Type 5 Double Tank Fire Truck, one of the most popular LaFrance models ever.
• 1785 Richard Mason Hand Fire “Enjin”
• 1886 Silsby Steam Pumper
• 1911 “Type 8” Roadster
• 1912 “Metropolitan” Steam Pumper
• 1926 “Type 75” Triple Combination
• 1958 GMC Pitman Chicago Snorkel #1
The Fire Museum is located at the Tanger Outlet entrance and is open Monday to Saturday from 10AM to 5PM. Added bonus, there is a Visitors office inside the museum so you can get coupons and discounts tickets to various Charleston attractions right there and then. Like the 5th Annual Battle of Charleston reenactment on April 18 – 19 from 9AM to 5PM (battles held both days at 2PM) at the Legare Farm on Johns Island. Tickets are $10 adults, $5 for children 5-12 and free for those 4 years old and under. Here is the events schedule and photos from previous years.
Here is a map with the Fire Museum and other under $10 family fun activities.
The cherry on our cake was when the girls received free firefighter hats. What’s not to love?
Filed under: Charleston, Daniel Island, Edisto Island, Folly Beach, Free Things to Do, Isle of Palms, Museums, Sullivan's Island | Tagged: 1857 Button & Blake 16-Man Hand Pumper, 1886 Silsby Steam Pumper, American LaFrance Fire Museum pictures, antique fire trucks photos, best of North Charleston for boys and girls, Charleston cheap family attractions, Charleston just for kids exciting museums, Charleston weekend family stuff under $10, fun free activities for children in Charleston, North Charleston free kids things to do, top fire education and prevention exhibits in SC, what's fun to do and see with young children near Summerville |