Tips to Keep Your Child Healthy at Pretend City

An Important Message Regarding Coronavirus

March 16, 2020

Pretend City will be closed temporarily effective Monday, March 16 to support the efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.  We look forward to announcing soon when we will reopen. During this time, Pretend City will continue to conduct deep cleaning of our exhibits and spaces.

Until we are able to reopen to the public and welcome guests back to Pretend City, we have plans to continue supporting parents and children with live streaming activities through our youtube channel.  Stay tuned.

We thank our community for your support and patience during this time. Pretend City will continue to monitor in real time and will issue an update on reopening as information becomes available.

Stay current with Pretend City by email, on our websiteTwitter, Facebook and Instagram.

A list of guidance documents and more information about Covid-19 from the California Department of Public Health can be found here.

We understand this is a trying time for everyone. Thank you again for your support. We look forward to seeing you soon.

March, 10, 2020

We know the recent news and uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) may have you rethinking your plans to visit Pretend City Children’s Museum.  At Pretend City,  the safety of our guests is paramount. We’re working hard to do everything we can to be prepared and address your concerns regarding the coronavirus.

We are:

  • Increasing the rigor of cleaning and sanitizing procedures throughout our Museum.

  • Continuing to regularly disinfect common surfaces and high-touch areas.

  • Making hand sanitizer available throughout the Museum.

We want to ensure that you can visit Pretend City with confidence. Our team continues to implement best practices including promoting hand-washing and healthy hygiene practices among our staff and guests.

As the coronavirus outbreak may continue for some time, we should be prepared to talk with our children about this epidemic.  Encourage your children to ask questions and learn with them about the virus, teaching them how to protect themselves.  We can take this opportunity to validate our children’s observations and questions and provide accurate knowledge about the epidemic in developmentally appropriate and culturally responsive ways.

Have any questions about coronavirus? Visit the Center for Disease Control website.

Want more details on our cleaning process?  Watch this video

We thank you for your continued support and loyalty to our educational nonprofit. We look forward to seeing you soon!

Sandra Bolton Griffin, RN
Executive Director

Visit the CDC website for the latest coronavirus information.

getting sick

As an educational facility, Pretend City Children’s Museum works diligently to provide a safe, educational and clean environment. We would like to answer our guests frequently asked questions about the cleaning procedures in the Museum. We have also researched what parents can do to ensure their children avoid becoming ill after visiting places where many children gather.

What are Pretend City’s cleaning procedures?

Pretendgineers start the day early, before we open, with cleaning procedures. Our staff is provided with safe odorless hospital grade cleaners to clean the exhibits, toys, and high-touch areas. Janitorial staff vacuum the floor, clean the restrooms and empty all the trashcans before opening and at the end of each day. Staff also conduct top of the hour sanitizing (you may have seen the sanitizing stations throughout the Museum.) Costumes are washed on a daily rotation. Hand sanitizer, Kleenex and garbage cans can be found throughout the museum for convenient use, and baby wipes in the art area and by the changing table. Staff sanitizes “loose parts” of exhibits regularly, including baby toys, grocery store items, blocks, trucks, etc. We have special baskets for items that have been in someone’s mouth so we can clean and dry them before they are used again.

Click here to see more about Pretend City’s Cleaning procedures.

Why do I smell chlorine?

The marina is maintained with chlorine to disinfect the water and keep the water safe for children. The water is tested every day assuring the chemical balance is correct and safe.


How can I make sure my child doesn’t get sick after visiting the Museum?

  • Wash hands with soap and water frequently. It takes 15-20 seconds (the length of the Happy Birthday song) to get them clean enough.
  • Avoid touching a person who is obviously sick, and avoid touching our own eyes and face, as viruses can transmit from our hands into our bodies.
  • Cover our mouths & noses when we sneeze or cough. We should cough and sneeze into our elbow or a tissue, and NOT into our hand.
  • Stay home if we (adults or children) are sick, until 24 hours after fever subsides.
  • Receive your flu vaccine each year.
  • Click here for more


What if my child STILL gets sick after visiting the Museum?

In an interview with Cindy L. E. Gellner, M.D., a board-certified physician specializing in pediatrics, she explains more in-depth about child sickness. “The main reason your child is getting all those infections is that he or she is being exposed to new viruses all the time. The viruses are everywhere no matter how much you sanitize and clean. There are at least 200 different cold viruses and they’re getting tricky, mutating all the time,” she explains.  She adds that children under six are sick an average of 6-7 times a year, with the average cold symptoms lingering for an average of 18 days.

Pretend City does all that we can to prevent illness and to maintain a clean and safe environment. We hope this research helps explain a little more in-depth about the child colds and how we can work together to prevent them so everyone enjoys the Pretend City experience. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or suggestions at

Tips to Know Before Visiting Pretend CityHow to Talk to Your Children About Coronavirus