Museum Staff

At the Children’s Museum at Saratoga, we love helping kids and families learn and play together.

The staff members at The Children’s Museum at Saratoga are available to help make your visit enjoyable and educational.  We look forward to assisting you during your visit.  If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.  We look forward to speaking with you!

Phone 518-584-5540, Email info@cmssny.org

 

Sarah Smith Syden, Executive Director – Phone ext. 207, executivedirector@cmssny.org 

Sarah brings 17 years’ experience as a museum leader and educator to her role as Executive Director. When visitors arrive, Sarah loves for them “to walk away having had a great time exploring and learning together.” She especially enjoys watching kids and grown-ups immersed in pretend play. “These moments really allow children to take the lead and create their own fascinating worlds.”  She says working in a children’s museum is a “real delight. Every single day here is different and that makes for a lot of really interesting and really exciting days.” When Sarah isn’t managing the day-to-day operations at the Museum and making sure every visitor has a great experience, this Mom of two loves traveling with her family and spending time outdoors. 

Education:

Jessica Bauder, Museum Educator jbauder@cmssny.org 

Erica Riekert, Education Director – Phone ext. 209, eriekert@cmssny.org 

Erica stays on top of trends in early childhood education to make sure the Children’s Museum at Saratoga offers hands-on learning experiences that are as fun as they are educational. An experienced educator, Erica develops the museum’s programs and special events. In addition, she manages museum exhibits and activities, curriculum-based field trips, and outreach programs for schools. She loves that guests can walk into The Children’s Museum and have a three-dimensional experience through visual, auditory and hands-on learning. “Working at the Children’s Museum,” says Erica, “has given me the opportunity to teach in a contemporary and inventive way.” 

Guest Services:

Bethanie Muska, Guest Services Manager – bmuska@cmssny.org 

Melissa McLellan, Museum Greeter & Floor Assistant – mmclellan@cmssny.org

Melissa welcomes guests at the front desk. She also resets the exhibits to keep the museum tidy and helps with birthday party celebrations. Melissa loves seeing children spark their curiosity, indulge their senses and genuinely enjoying learning at the Museum. She especially enjoys Tuesday for Tots “because I get see children learning and exploring first-hand and lead them through fun educational lessons.”

Molly Nash, Guest Services Associate & Program Coordinator – mnash@cmssny.org

Whether she is greeting and checking in guests at the front desk, helping visitors find the perfect gift at our museum shop, or booking birthday parties and group visits, Molly is always on the look-out to help kids and their grown-ups get the most out of every visit. Her favorite part of working at the Children’s Museum at Saratoga? “I love seeing the children playing and having fun!” 

Operations:

Ellen Rilley, Operations Manager – Phone ext. 210, ellen@cmssny.org

Besides managing day-to-day operations in our beautiful building, Ellen is the Museum’s unofficial historian and problem-solver. She handles administrative functions, membership follow-up, mailings, and fundraising. In 2011, after owning and running three businesses in Boston for decades, Ellen retired, moved to Saratoga Springs, and joined the Children’s Museum staff. Her goal is to help all our visitors have an EXCEPTIONAL experience. When she’s not working at the Museum, Ellen loves travel and serves on three not-for-profit boards. 

Visitor Assistants:

Ryan Jones, Sofia LaRosa, Harry Lazar, Kiersten Murdie, Kes Otto