Just a few days ago, meteorologists in Kansas City started releasing their weather reports for winter 2016. Most of them agreed– winter would be mild, and at times unseasonably warm, with little snow. While that may be a bummer for snow-lovers, it’s a great thing for everyone who loves to play outside! This fall and winter is going to be a great one for PLAY, and today, I’m sharing my 5 favorite ways to play in fall and winter (with a few tips on where to play in Kansas City, too)!
One of our most beloved ways to play in fall and winter is to visit a local park. Going for a walk, playing on swings and slides, it’s all a ton of fun. We’re also blessed with a local park that has tons of fall leaves to play in, making it a great fall activity even after our own fall leaves are mulched up. On warm days, taking a stroll and enjoying the park are a great way to get out and enjoy before it gets cold again, but slides are incredibly fun in the slow, too, so just bundle up if you’re exploring when it’s snowy out!
Our local park has a great playground with fun games of tic tac toe, and even a sweet cat who loves to roam the park (he lives nearby). But finding the perfect park near you (or finding a new park to explore) is as simple as typing in your area and “Parks” or “playgrounds” to find a list of ones near you that look amazing. When I typed in “Kansas City Playgrounds” I got an awesome list with some playgrounds we are definitely adding to our list of places to visit!
When the winter chill does get to you, one fun family activity that I love to do is go ice skating. Even in warm locations, ice skating can be an option at places that have an indoor or outdoor rink. Ice skating can be a great workout and still be a ton of fun. If you’re really into skating, looking into lessons for figure skating or hockey can be good options, but for many, just enjoying the ice skating as a family outing can be fun! If you live in the Kansas City area, I’m a big fan of Park Place in Leawood, KS or Crown Center in Kansas City, MO.
Whether it’s chilly outside or not, going golfing as a family can be a fun outing! More and more places are popping up around the country with heated bays and targets if going golfing traditionally around a course isn’t an option. Here in the Kansas City area, Topgolf is popular, but there are many similar options around the country.
Another option can be finding out just how brave you are at an adventurous place like a skydiving simulator or super high rock wall! Many places are now getting skydiving simulators where you pop in and suit up, then massive bursts of air lift you high above the ground…indoors! iFly is a great option just south of the Kansas City in terms of indoor skydiving.
Finally, one of my absolute favorite things is to find a great indoor playground for your kids to have fun with! There are so many great options for indoor play across the country, from trampoline parks to children’s science museums. In Kansas City, our favorites are at Science City inside Union Station, LEGOland Discovery Center, and SkyZone or UrbanAir.
Playgrounds aren’t the only great features of these places, either– Science City has a fun tug of war that uses levers and pulleys, and many of them have a variety of ways to jump, run, pull, and explore!
Wherever you decide to play this fall and winter, you want to be sure you’re staying fueled up, and keeping your kids fueled up, too. Even though school is in session, weekends, days off from school during winter break, and even snow days make great days for play. When it comes time to refuel, I love CLIF Kid ZBars to keep both Zack and I fueled up!
Each bar has nutrients that kids need, but the best part is that they don’t compromise taste to get those nutrients. My kid LOVES the taste of CLIF Kid ZBars, but I love that they’re made with organic ingredients, are non-GMO, and are free of High Fructose Corn Syrup.
As play disappears from schools and communities, it’s our job as parents to help our kids reclaim play. I know most of us have fond memories of playing outside as kids, but our kids are having fewer and fewer chances to do the same. That’s why, regardless of season, we have to make sure our kids get that great playtime, too!
Whether you’re taking your kids golfing in heated bays, or ice skating, or to a playground, making sure they get active time is a great way to keep them going, even when they’re not getting as much of that time at school.
How do you stay intentional about playtime and making sure your kids get plenty of opportunities to be active? Let me know in the comments below, and don’t forget to check out this video from CLIF Kid all about play!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.