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Please Touch Museum announces Independence Blue Cross as Official Health & Wellness Partner, renaming museum’s beloved Carousel House to the “Independence Blue Cross Carousel House”

By May 17, 2024May 28th, 2024Company Culture Featured Press Releases

Greg Deavens, President and CEO, Independence Blue Cross and Patricia D. Wellenbach, President & CEO, Please Touch Museum

Furthering partnership, IBX will continue supporting free admission summer “Ready-Set-School” programming for community

The Please Touch Museum (Museum) and Independence Blue Cross (IBX) announced their continued partnership as IBX becomes the Official Health & Wellness Partner of the Museum, showcasing IBX’s long-standing commitment to children and families of Philadelphia.

At a special moment during the Museum’s Imagination Ball fundraiser on Thursday, May 16, the Museum announced the multiyear partnership to include the renaming of its beloved Carousel House, home to the historic Woodside Park Dentzel Carousel, to the “Independence Blue Cross Carousel House” — with visual enhancements to the space forthcoming. Additionally, IBX, Independence Blue Cross Foundation and Keystone First will continue to support the Museum’s Ready-Set-School program, designed to provide children and families with Museum-based experiences to reinforce academic, physical, and social emotional learning during the summer months to better prepare children for a successful transition to school in the fall.

Please Touch Museum President & CEO Patricia D. Wellenbach shared the announcement with supporters onsite during the Imagination Ball as Independence Blue Cross President & CEO Gregory E. Deavens received the Corporate Philanthropy Partner Award on behalf of the organization. IBX has provided longstanding support of the Museum dating back to a leadership gift in 2008 that was instrumental in the Museum’s move to Memorial Hall. Since that time, the partnership between IBX and the Museum has deepened, including sponsorship of four PHL PreK Move Up Days recognizing children who completed the City of Philadelphia’s free pre-K program with a “graduation’ celebration and field trip to the Museum. IBX also sponsored the Ready-Set-School that provided seven free admission Community Days for nearly 17,000 children and families during the summers of 2022 and 2023.

“We are grateful to continue our long-standing relationship with Independence Blue Cross in this deeply meaningful way,” said Patricia D. Wellenbach, President & CEO, Please Touch Museum. “IBX is a pillar of the Philadelphia community and committed to supporting families where they live, work, and play. This multiyear collaboration will allow us to create more opportunities for children and families to live happier, healthier, and more play-filled lives. We appreciate IBX’s continued investment in the community and supporting the Museum’s mission of changing a child’s life as they discover the power of learning through play.”

“Independence Blue Cross has been committed to supporting the greater Philadelphia community for more than 85 years. The Please Touch Museum is one of nation’s premiere places for children to learn while they play, and we’re excited to further our longtime partnership, especially being part of the beloved 100-year-old Carousel House. We’re also pleased to continue to support Ready-Set-School, whose popularity is a testament to the Museum’s innovative approach to help our community’s children prepare for a healthy return to school,” said Gregory E Deavens, Independence Blue Cross president and CEO.

The Museum will begin the process of making visual enhancements to the now Independence Blue Cross Carousel House. This space encloses the historic Dentzel Carousel built in the early 1900s, featuring hand-carved animals, stationary chariots and an array of 1,296 lights. Additionally, the Museum and IBX will continue the Ready-Set-School program including three free admission Community Days on the last Sundays of June, July, and August over the next five years. Summer 2024 welcomes the program’s 3rd annual program series, and will enhance the Museum’s ongoing programmatic focus, A Playful World. The series will infuse themes of creativity, compassion, confidence, and curiosity into engaging activities that build academic, physical, and social emotional skills essential to school readiness.  This year’s Ready-Set-School dates are June 30, 2024, July 28, 2024, and August 25, 2024.

Free admission ticket reservations and programming for each day in 2024 will be announced in May. Follow the Museum on Instagram, Facebook, or sign up to receive emails to learn about upcoming Ready-Set-School programming filled with educational activities and interactive experiences designed specifically for kids.  In addition, special discounts are available to IBX members and associates.


Media contact:
Ruth Stoolman