Halloween is over (along with all the distractions and excitement), and there are still almost two full months left before Christmas.
How on earth are you going to keep the kids occupied and entertained over the next few weeks now that the air has turned cold and you can’t rely on the weather to make outdoor play an option?
Fortunately, you’re never really far from something unique or cool to do in Indiana — and there are family-friendly attractions galore.
Here are some of our favorites:
What’s better than indoor miniature golf on a rainy day? Glow in the dark miniature golf, of course! They have 18 holes that will challenge even the best miniature golf aficionado.
If your kids aren’t into golf, let them check out the laser maze at Glowgolf. The clock will challenge their reflexes as they try to work through a wild maze of lights in their best “spy kid” mode.
Mug N Bun Drive-In
Can’t deal with dinner tonight? Are you absolutely tired of trying to figure out what everybody will eat after a long day at work? Well, skip the hassle and go to Mug N Bun for dinner and entertainment!
Mug N Bun is a traditional drive-in restaurant with car-hop service and American fast-food fare like burgers, fries, hot dogs, and other goodies. Parents will love the old-fashioned feel of the place, while kids will be entertained by both the service and the food. (Don’t forget to try their homemade root beer while you’re there!)
Want to utterly get away from the doldrums of life and lose yourself in the moment? Main Event claims to be “the latest and greatest in family entertainment” and “the most fun you can have under one roof” — and we believe them.
There’s family-style bowling with a surround-sound entertainment system, a laser tag arena that will let your little warriors test themselves and each other, and a virtual reality experience that will let you test your lightsaber skills or go on virtual adventures that will make you question if your feet are really still on the ground.
Speedway Indoor Karting
Take your kid to the races — and let them drive! The multi-level course with a banked oval at Speedway Indoor Karting will let you and your kids actually hit the tracks and experience the thrill of indoor go-karting (ages eight and up).
Once you’ve raced the tracks, check out the 1911 Grill onsite, where you can find burgers, soft pretzels, and all sorts of tasty treats that will fill you (and the kids) back up in no time.
Rhythm Discovery Center
Located in Downtown Indy, the Rhythm Discovery Center has both unique historic artifacts on display and percussion instruments that are designed for hands-on play by children of all ages.
To say that the Rhythm Discovery Center offers interactive exhibits is a massive understatement — they actively encourage you to pick up a drum and learn to drop a beat. (Leave your kids there long enough and they may form their own drum circle!)
Atomic Bowling Duckpin
Located conveniently in the Fountain Square area, Atomic Bowling is the kind of place both adults and kids love because it combines nostalgic appeal with pure fun.
There are eight duckpin bowling lanes (a version of regular bowling that uses smaller balls and pins, making them particularly suited to young hands), themed pool tables, jukeboxes, and vintage decor from the early-to-mid 1900s. (And, like any good bowling alley, there’s a bar and a cafe, so you won’t go thirsty or hungry while you’re there.)
The Indianapolis Zoo
Lions and tigers and bears — oh my! But that’s not all you’ll find at The Indianapolis Zoo: There are more than 300 species of animals on site and 64 acres of indoor and outdoor exhibits — and the zoo is open all year long.
You can check out the dolphins through the underwater viewing area and watch special presentations as they do tricks, catch polar bears (and lions and tigers) at play, see rhinos and zebras, and more — but one of the biggest attractions is the zoo’s International Orangutan Center, where eight of these critically endangered creatures are housed as part of a preservation effort.
The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
This gets mentioned a lot on lists of entertainment spots for kids, but this is no run-of-the-mill dusty old museum: It’s the largest children’s museum in the whole world, and it’s filled to the brim with interactive exhibits that give kids an exciting way to physically engage with scientific and historical displays.
If you’ve never been to the Children’s Museum before, you probably want to block out the entire day — and then come back time and again to more carefully explore exhibits like the Dinosphere, the working archaeology lab, and the mummy room!
Skyzone Trampoline Park
Are your kids little walking powerhouses with unlimited energy? Try taking them to the Skyzone Trampoline Park where they can check out all the different play experiences that are separated by age.
Your toddlers can play in an area that’s age-appropriate and safe, while you’re older kids can try their skills on the Ninja Warrior Course, jousting, dodgeball, the Warped Wall, and the Drop Zone — among other attractions.
In a city as big as Indianapolis, there are tons of places to go with your kids, whether you’re looking to get in touch with nature, give them new educational opportunities or just let them wear off a little of that weekend energy!