STEAM After Dark set Jan. 17 at kidscommons

COLUMBUS — Parents can make a date to reconnect with one another and simultaneously help their youngsters connect with simple discovery at kidscommons children’s museum’s popular STEAM After Dark continuing series. The next gathering will be 5 to 8 p.m. Jan. 17 at the facility at 309 Washington St. in downtown Columbus.

The acronym refers to science, technology, engineering, art and math. The theme will be superheroes.

The events, set up for a capacity of 40 people, normally draw at least 20 to 30 children each of the third Fridays of the month, according to Whitney Hartwell, the museum’s operations manager. The gatherings give youngsters time away from Mom and Dad, who often in turn use the time to enhance their unity.

“Some will tell us that they’ll be just down the street (at dinner),” Hartwell said. “So some of them do use the time as a simple chance to get away for a date night.”

Giving the younger attendees time away from parents can be a way to build a measure of self-confidence and independence in them, as Hartwell sees it.

“And a lot of the kids end up developing friendships with one another (over time),” she said.

Fun, hands-on activities from past events have included such activities as making slime, popcorn balls or even cooking simple items.

Cost: $20 for kidscommons members or $25 for non-members.

Information and registration: 812-378-3046 or kidscommons.org. Registration deadline is Jan. 14.