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1. Zoo or Petting Zoo
2. Local, State, or National Parks – take along a picnic lunch if the weather is nice!
4. Local museums — art, history, science, kids’…
6. Nature Trails or Greenways — enjoy nature, collect special rocks/shells/leaves to add to a science area with magnifying glasses at home
7. Pet Store — some will give tours to small groups of kids if scheduled in advance, but my kids like just browsing, too!
8. Toy Store — set ground rules and clear expectations BEFORE entering!
9. Grocery Store or Farmer’s Market — see 25 activities to use at the grocery store here
10. Airport — ours has a park that overlooks the runway
11. Mountains or other nearby natural “wonders” — caves, caverns, canyons, geysers, hills, interesting rocks/soil, forests, desert, etc.
12. Beach – Lake – Pond – River — dig in the sand, feed the birds, look for turtles/fish, go fishing, skip rocks, wade or swim in the water, play scientist
13. Hardware or Lawn & Garden Store — look at tools, plants; my kids always enjoy looking in the lighting/fan section and the lawn mower section
15. Pool or Swim Lessons
17. Fire Department — some will give tours to small groups set up in advance; usually free, but you can always bring along some treats to thank the firemen!
18. Dance or Gym Class or Open Gym
19. Library — check out books or go to a story hour
20. Farm — depends on the particular farm, but you could pick your own fruits/veggies, look at animals, visit a pumpkin patch, go through a corn maze, etc.
21. You or Your Spouse’s place of work
22. Book Store
23. Restaurant — especially one with an open kitchen or where they cook in front of you
24. Sports fields (that aren’t being used) — let them run the bases, or kick a ball into a soccer goal
25. Sunday School or Church
26. Movie Theater — some have special days/hours for family-friendly kid shows
27. Mall — it’s a great place to walk, especially on bad weather days, but also they often have some kid friendly displays or play areas (often free)
28. Factory tours — dependent on your area, but maybe you have some type of food factories which give tours??
29. Teacher/Education store — our local one has a beanbag + book section that my kids LOVE
30. Store such as Target, Walmart, Michael’s, A.C. Moore, etc. — I usually tell the kids what I need to look at before we go in and that if they are patient while I shop, we can visit the areas of the store they want to see when I’m done
**If you don’t know a lot about the area where you live or about what is available for kids in the area, I highly suggest joining a Mom’s Group. I joined 2 via Meetup.com and not only did I learn so much about activities in our area, but we made many great friends!
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