Winter break is almost upon us! Kids (and parents!) all around the GF region will be sick of sitting around the house by at least Day 3. Moms, bookmark this roundup now for when you’re ready to pull your hair out. It’s a collection of activities you can do with the whole family on a budget. And…even better…they were selected purposefully to be the kinds of activities to make your kids crash on the couch as soon as you get home. You’re welcome.
Enjoy Coffee While the Little Kids Run Around Wiggle Worms Playland
(Perfect for groups of moms and kids, babies, toddlers, and school-aged kids)
While on a hunt for bargain clothes for the little one, I stumbled on Wiggle Worms Playland. Located in the former Moreau YMCA building, Wiggle Worms has a big space to spread out and let the kids burn some of that pent up energy. The best part are the tables just outside the play area where moms can meet up and sip coffee while the kids let out the crazy. If you bring a pair of headphones, you might even be able to close your eyes (for a minute) and pretend you’re in a real coffee shop. They have a few snacks and drinks available, and plenty of deals on consignment toys, clothes for kids, maternity clothes, and women’s wear.
All the information can be found on the webpage above, but here are some highlights. They’re located in South Glens Falls, a day pass is $8, and they have tons of classes, events, and meetups going on. Check the Facebook page for the latest events and hours. Wiggle Worms even has quiet playtime once a month for kids with sensory sensitivities!
Ice Skate til They Drop
We have no shortage of places to use those ice skates here in the North Country! Check out one of these local skating rinks both indoor and out.
Glens Falls Civic Center, 1 Civic Center Plaza in Glens Falls, $5, 518-798-0366
Check the schedule at the link above for public skating hours, which are most Tuesdays October-April from 2-4pm.
Glens Falls Rec Center, Fire Rd in Glens Falls, limited skate rentals and learn to skate, 518-761-3855
Saratoga Springs Ice Rink, rentals available, skating lessons available, $5 (children under 5 free), 518-583-3462
*Call ahead to be sure the ice is in good condition
Crandall Park, Upper Glen Street in Queensbury, free, 518-615-0446 (bathrooms and warming hut available)
This one could be extra special if you take the kids at night for skating under the lights!
East Field, 175 Dix Avenue in Glens Falls, free, 518-761-3813 (warming hut available)
Gurney Lane Rec Area, 118 Gurney Lane Rd in Queensbury, free, 518-798-3134 (bathrooms available)
Dig Out Those Swimsuits and Take a Dip at the YMCA
Take a mini vacation in the middle of winter! Head over to the YMCA for a day of laps and swimming stunts in the heated pool.
Call or check this schedule for family swim times before you head out. You don’t need to be a member to take advantage of all the Y has to offer, a day pass for the family is $25. You can spend the whole day there playing basketball, racquetball, or walking the indoor track. Children must be at least 14 to use the Wellness Center exercise equipment. Want to take a Mommy moment and take a class by yourself? Take advantage of the babysitting services at the Y! Extra fees apply for babysitting and drop-in classes.
Explore Local Trails by Snowshoe
Don’t worry if you don’t own snowshoes- there are plenty of places to rent & hike all in one spot. And don’t worry if you’ve never even snowshoed before! It’s like walking, only these fancy shoes distribute your weight evenly so you can walk in deep snow! It takes a lot more effort than regular walking. This means snowshoeing will tire out the entire family in under 2 hours, guaranteed.
Lucky for us, there are TONS of trails in our area for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, but I’m going to highlight a few snowshoeing trails that sounded more kid-friendly as I muddled through the lists of local trails. (Let me know if you try these or any others you love for families so I can update this post!)
Moreau State Park off exit 17S (Rentals available)
Cole’s Woods in Queenbury
Gurney Lane Recreation Center in Queensbury
Of course, a day out in snow gear isn’t the same without a stop at a local coffee shop to follow up with hot cocoa!
Skate Around in Circles and Play Laser Tag at The Fun Spot
This one doesn’t require much explaining if you grew up in the GF area! The Fun Spot (AKA Skateland) has been around for ages. You probably remember strapping on those skates (pre-rollerblades) and rolling around the rink in endless circles hoping to win a game of four corners. After you requested a song in the DJ booth, your mom would call you over to eat a slice of pizza before it was time to go. Not much has changed, except they’ve added an indoor play area and laser tag! Keep an eye out in your child’s backpack for coupons to use here during school vacations.
They have various pricing options for skating only, laser tag only, playland only, or any combination of these. Admission to all 3 (with one game of laser tag) is $16. Skate rentals are $3.
Perfect Your Bowling Skills
This last selection is an oldie, but goodie! Bowling can be tons of fun, especially if you bring the whole family or meet up with friends. (I still ask for bumpers for myself to make the whole thing less depressing.)
Kingpin’s Alley in South Glens Falls (Check out the flyer for special times/prices, but the best for kids looks like Sunday mornings from 9-11am, $1.99 games! )
Lake George Lanes and Games (Also has laser tag and indoor playground)
Saratoga Strike Zone (For specials click here)
Send the Kids to Relax in Yoga Class While You Shop
I’m a huge fan of The Shirt Factory in Glens Falls mostly because it has such cool features as a building and contains loads of local flair. Lemon Tree Yoga Studio offers classes for the little ones, and I’m sure you could find a shop or two to mosey around while they’re getting their zen on.
(By the way, if you have a night off from the kids, I highly recommend the candlelight stretch & meditation class. You don’t need to be an expert to attend this night of relaxation. You’ll leave feeling like a new person!)
If you’re willing to do a little extra driving, here are a few bonus ideas for day trips active kids will love between here and the Albany area.
- Flight Trampoline Park or Skyzone Tampoline Park (Albany Area)
- The Giggle Lounge (Clifton Park)
- The Wonder Room (Ballston Lake)
- Tree Paad Fun Center (Malta)
Of course, there are the other tried & true winter ideas like sledding and good old-fashioned snowball fights! Hopefully this round up helps you and your little ones beat the winter blues. I sometimes forget how lucky we are to have so many fun winter activities in our area! Do you have another suggestion for something to release all that kid energy in the winter? Know of a fun day trip idea? I’d love to hear from you! Fill out our contact form or leave a comment below!
Thanks to Jason Checkla Photography for the beautiful winter scene in our featured photo.