From Here to Timbuktu: A Journey Through West Africa 

From Here to Timbuktu takes visitors on a journey through three of West Africa's geographic regions -- the coastal region, the Savanna grasslands, and the Sahel bordering the Sahara Desert and leading to Timbuktu, an ancient center of learning. The exhibit was created by EdVenture Children's Museum® in Columbia, SC, and made possible by grants from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council.

Children can travel by moped, camel, fishing boat, and over canopy walks as they move through the regions illustrated by colorful graphical panels. Along the way, they participate in exploratory hands-on activities that provide a taste of West African life. They can fish with nets like coastal fishermen, experience the sights and smells of the urban Apapa marketplace in Lagos, Nigeria, sojourn through the rainforest, experience traditional housing and social activities such as a dance school and village beauty shop, and get creative with the sand of the Sahel region. The journey ends at the City of Timbuktu where children can learn to write their names in the native languages of Arabic and Tuareg and send a postcard detailing their “travels.”

The exhibit was created by EdVenture Children’s Museum®, in Columbia, SC, through a grant made possible by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The mission of EdVenture is to inspire children to experience the joy of earning. EdVenture is dedicated to lifelong learning through its 92,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor interactive exhibit space and in its educational outreach programs and after school programs. The museum has welcomed visitors from all 50 states and 18 foreign countries, creating shared experiences and memories for families learning together. For more information about EdVenture, visit or call (803) 779-3100.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute’s mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit

The Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council (ANCRC) was established by the Arkansas Legislature in 1987 by Arkansas Act 729 (now codified as Arkansas Code Annotated 15-12-101 through 15-12-103). The act created the ANCRC to manage and supervise a grants and trust fund for the acquisition, management, and stewardship of state-owned properties acquired or used for ANCRC approved purposes. The grants are funded through state's real estate transfer tax. The ANCRC consists of eleven voting members. Grants from this fund are for projects that protect and maintain state-owned natural areas, historic sites, and outdoor recreation.