We find any excuse we can to head into the city with the kids, so when my sister told us about Evolution, a museum-like art shop that displays hundreds of animal skeletons, authentic meteorites, fossils and dinosaur teeth, we immediately planned an outing. First, we lunched at Lavagna in the East Village, an intimate (but casual) Italian restaurant with food so authentic that patrons around us were gushing over it…in Italian. Then we walked ten minutes west to Evolution.
The curious shop is a feast for the senses — and a place that budding young naturalists won’t know where to look next simply because there’s so much to see. Many of the items I didn’t even realize you could buy. Genuine Woolly Mammoth hair. Scorpions encased in resin. Bright blue butterflies arranged artfully under glass.
My son, who at 8 couldn’t stop staring, traded me three $25 Amazon gift cards he received for his birthday so I would buy him a framed dissected squid for his bookshelf. No joke. My daughter ogled the rows of exotic shells, and she selected a few bright purple and orange ones from beaches along the Indian Ocean, which made me dream of going to the Maldives. More importantly, the items here captured their imagination and had them pointing and clapping with every turn in the store.
Evolution should be on everyone’s local bucket list. (It’s very close to the city’s infamous bookstore, The Strand, too, if you want to combine a visit to their inspiring children’s books section.) Take a tour of Evolution (687 Broadway, Manhattan) below.