Keeping Madisonians Young at Heart
Amy Recob took an internship in college at the Madison Children’s Museum and has been hooked ever since. She continues to find new ways to give back to a staple in the Madison community as a mother and new children’s author. Amy’s role as co-chair of the Wonder Ball and Wonder Prom allows her to remain working behind the scenes, while still enjoying her favorite part about the museum—keeping kids and adults young at heart.
Madison Magazine: How did you get involved with the Madison Children’s Museum?
Amy Recob: I’ve had many experiences over the years starting with my very first PR Internship while I was a student at UW–Madison! A few decades later, I was fortunate to be involved in the construction of the new facility at N. Hamilton through my employer, J.H. Findorff & Son. Our firm actively supported the museum’s fundraising efforts through their Sock Hop event, Punch Buggy exhibit and other sponsorships. My personal connections through those activities spilled over to the Wonder Ball where I have served as a co-chair for the last two years.
MM: It seems like you found your fit early on. What has been the most beneficial part of the museum?
AR: For me, the most beneficial element of Madison Children’s Museum has been the educational programming it has provided to my children. From the amazing exhibits and community events to day camps and workshops, the museum has always been a favorite destination for my son, Max (age 7) and daughter, Mollie (age 10).
MM: Have you worked with the museum in your new role as a children’s author?
AR: The Madison Children’s Museum served as the perfect location for my launch party of the second book in The BugaBees series last year. The space really helped to reinforce the overriding message of the books, which teach food allergic kids that missing out on certain foods doesn’t have to mean missing out on all the fun! I hope to continue to utilize the museum for future event rentals related to my outreach efforts on food allergy awareness. It also happens to be a great place for birthday parties, corporate events and even unique wedding celebrations!
MM: The venue is definitely one-of-a-kind! How will the upcoming Wonder Ball and Wonder Prom events help the museum?
AR: Wonder Ball is one of Madison Children’s Museum’s largest annual fundraisers created to provide general funding for the organization’s ongoing operations, exhibits and programs. Wonder Prom also supports these efforts by offering a more affordable, less formal opportunity to join in on the fun. Both events offer a truly unique and whimsical experience for attendees, proven by the fact that we continue to sell out every year!
MM: As co-chair, what are some of your roles and duties?
AR: I work with my fellow chairs, Mary Turke and Peggy Pyle, to support MCM’s staff, recruit and advise other volunteer committee members, solicit sponsors, and in general, help ensure the event is special and unique. All of us are active participants in developing event themes, entertainment, decor, auction items and more.
MM: What can people who attend expect?
AR: Both Wonder Ball and Wonder Prom attendees can expect to unleash their inner child for an amazing evening of fun, with full access to museum exhibits and entertainment! For those joining us at dinner this year, we’re especially excited to have radio personality Michael Feldman from Public Radio International’s “Whad’ya Know” show participating in our program. Later in the evening, Wisconsin’s own disco superstars, VO5, will be playing live music on the museum’s second floor. And in between it all will be opportunities to mingle with friends, find some great auction items, and enjoy delicious food and spirits.
MM: That sounds like a great night! How does the Museum add to Madison’s culture and community?
AR: I think Madison’s Capitol Square exudes a unique feeling of community and positive energy that I have not seen replicated in any other city. Of course, the physical presence of the museum helps contribute to that, making it a wonderful place to live, work and, of course, play! Access for Everyone also strives to provide all children with the opportunity to participate in the museum’s activities regardless of their economic circumstances. There truly is something for everyone at the museum, and because of that, I believe it is an organization that has greatly enhanced our community and continues to do so.
MM: What do you hope to accomplish in the upcoming years as both an author and involved volunteer at the museum?
AR: It would be fun to try and merge my experience as a children’s author to create a story about Madison Children’s Museum some day. What a great way to bridge two areas of my life that I am very passionate about! Perhaps there’s a future book idea there on the horizon? That would be an interesting thought to pursue … overall, what I love most about the museum is that it’s not just a place for kids, but for all those young at heart. Through adult programs like SPARK and Adult Swim, anyone at any age can explore their inner child and experience the power of play and imagination.
The Madison Children’s Museum Wonder Ball and Wonder Prom will be held on August 24, 2013. To learn more about special events and how to get involved with the Madison Children’s Museum, visit madisonchildrensmuseum.org. Amy Recob’s book series, The BugaBees, is available for ordering and as an interactive app! To learn more visit, thebugabees.com.