At the end of October, the Betty Brinn Children’s Museum introduced its new Sendik’s Food Market, a pretend, child-sized grocery store modeled after a real Sendik’s. I am not one to use this word very often, but it is absolutely darling.
The market includes a produce department, deli, bakery, floral department, freezer and grocery shelves stocked with boxed and canned items. The fake food is the best I’ve ever seen, with mini versions of local products like Breadsmith loaves, bags of Alterra coffee, shredded Sargento cheese, Usinger's sausages and more.
The coolest aspect of the market is how the kids interact. On a busy Sunday afternoon, at least 15 children role-played as cashiers (there’s a checkout lane with a register), baggers, stockers, deli workers, bakers and floral arrangers.
We hung out at the market for more then two hours. Sometimes it was absolute chaos, with 2-year-olds dumping over their grocery-filled mini carts, but other times -- when older kids outnumbered the little ones -- the place hummed like a fine tuned Swatch watch. My son put on an apron to restock the shelves, a cashier called the nearby “bank” to request more fake dollar bills, a deli worker made a sandwich for a customer wearing a dinosaur jumpsuit.
The parents got into it, too. I heard one dad say, “Cleanup on aisle seven,” and I couldn’t resist humming The Clash song “Lost In the Supermarket.”
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.