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Old 01-17-2010, 09:00 AM
 
Location: Virginia
1,938 posts, read 6,734,170 times
Reputation: 876

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My kids' ages are 6, 8, and 11. I am looking for places to eat, go, etc that are very cheap or next to free in the area.
When I lived Colo Sprgs, we had a variety of places that were very kid friendly that we could hang out at when desperate to get out of the house. Things I am looking for will resemble the following activities that we used to do in COS:
- resturants with toy stores attached
- resturants with mini libraries
-resturants with play areas- not McDs
-indoor playgrounds in shopping centers
- a swingset store that had a variety of models to buy but we came to play
- unique parks (not your standard play structure)
- places with water fountains for kids to play in
- mega-churches with indoor/outdoor playareas
-roller/ice skating
- rock climbing walls in malls
- indoor swimming pools
- nature trails
- dollar movie theaters
-an old train station turned to resturant
- an old WWII airplane turned into resturant
These are some of the things there.
What things do you have here that are similar? Where do you go to get out of the house? Beaches...yes. What else? SAHM you know where to go...
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Old 01-17-2010, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Virginia Beach/Norfolk.
1,562 posts, read 4,083,151 times
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Every thing you listed can be found in Hampton Roads. You just have to find them.
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Old 01-17-2010, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Virginia Beach/Norfolk.
1,562 posts, read 4,083,151 times
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Ever been to Kangaroo Jac's?

Kangaroo Jac's Birthday Parties and Indoor Children's Inflatable Party and Play Center
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Old 01-17-2010, 01:16 PM
 
134 posts, read 516,640 times
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-indoor playgrounds in shopping centers
MacArthur Center has a brand new one in the food court area.

- unique parks (not your standard play structure)
Lots of free family friendly festivals in Town Point Park downtown once it warms up again.

- places with water fountains for kids to play in
Norfolk Zoo and next to Waterside/Town Point Park.

-roller/ice skating
Chilled Ponds in Chesapeake, Iceland in VA Beach, and Iceplex in Yorktown

- dollar movie theaters
Cinema Cafe on certain nights of the week.

Try checking out the Children's Museum in Old Town Portsmouth.

If you go over to the peninsula there are some really nice hiking trails at Newport News Park and York River Park.
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Old 01-17-2010, 02:48 PM
 
Location: Virginia Beach, VA
2,124 posts, read 8,434,970 times
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Lynnhaven Mall has a kids play area... it is upstairs, then go towards the elevators towards the front.

Also, check out the Marine Science Museum off General Booth Blvd.

If you live in Va. Beach, become members of the Rec centers. It is abot 58 for an adult for a year and less for kids. they have all kinds of classes and activities and INDOOR pool!! Plus you can work out.

Since we don't have the very cold weather that colorado does, our area hasn't developed quite the network that you may be used to, but keep looking. You will find there are Gems around.

Shelly
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Old 01-17-2010, 05:22 PM
 
Location: Va Beach
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We used to tie em' up "outback" til we got home, saved money on a sitter til we gathered up enuff money to take em' for happy meals.
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Old 01-17-2010, 06:01 PM
 
Location: Virginia
1,938 posts, read 6,734,170 times
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LOL Erma...
Thanks all! Exactly what I was looking for! I knew there were places but didn't know where to look. And I apologize for the error in the title!!
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Old 01-17-2010, 08:05 PM
 
Location: Where ever you're at, that's where you are!
371 posts, read 1,120,765 times
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There are three or four malls on the Southside with indoor play areas, but your children are too old to technically be able to play there. They go by a height requirement and My son (being on the short side of the height scale) maxed that out around five yrs old.

Blue Bird Gap farm in Hampton is free. It has a bunch of animals you can walk around and look at, you can buy animal feed from little machines. (have your own quarters and cups to hold the animal feed). There are deer, goats, horses, ducks, geese, peacocks, bunnies, and I think there's a bobcat or something still there. There is a childrens playground there also. YOu can take picnic lunchs. They have tables. And they have a restroom there also.

Nature trails. Sandy Bottom Nature park in Hampton is nice. They have a nice playground there, and a little nature center where you can see some snakes, fish, etc.

I dont know of any restaurants around Hampton Roads with toystores or mini libraries attached. Unless you count Cracker Barrell. And no restaurants in old train stations or airplanes. We are sorely lacking in cool, unique, family friendly restaurants in the Hampton Roads area.

Chick Fil A has indoor play areas. They are geared towards smallish kids though. Your six year old might enjoy it. SOme burger kings have indoor play areas. The one in Kiln creek in NN is on the bigger side.
Joe's Crab shack has a childrens play area outside for people who are dining there.

Williamsburg has a unique wooden play structure park. I cant recall the name of it but its across from the Target/ Ukrops shopping center off of 199.

Newport News has a wooden play structure area in Huntington park.
Va Beach has a wooden play structure area at Mt. Trashmore.
Chesapeake has a wooden play structure area at Chesapeake City Park.

Hampton's new town center has a water fountain area where kids can play and get wet. Free. It is behind the Barnes and Noble store.
Someone mentioned the zoo fountain already. You have to pay to get in of course.
Bass Pro shop in Hampton has an indoor rock wall, you have to pay to use it. I think the last time my kids climbed it, it was $2 or $3 maybe.
Ft. Eustis has an indoor swimming pool/aquatic center. They have a mini lazy river, a slide, etc. It is a few dollars if you are military and I believe $3 if you are not military.

Deer Park in Newport News has a nice playground. Fantasy Farms in NN is another nice playground. Those two are probably our favorites in the area.

During the nicer weather the Hampton Roads area abounds with festivals. Although most are free or inexpensive, you do usually have to pay for parking.

I believe that the Jamestown museum is still free for Williamsburg/york county residents. You might call to ask. We went several times free, but other than school field trips, havent been on our own in the past year or two.

The Busch Gardens/Water Country season passes have been our best bet for entertaining the kids/family. You can get your tickets where you pay it out in monthly installments over the course of your season pass (either 1 or 2 years) which makes it WAY easier than forking it all over up front.
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Old 01-17-2010, 09:04 PM
 
Location: Hampton, va
18 posts, read 51,303 times
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I absolutely love taking my kids to jumping joeys in williamsburg... Its filled with the inflatable that the kids can jump on and I love it I can just let them go crazy
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Old 03-05-2010, 12:16 PM
 
24 posts, read 63,768 times
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Hehe, Erma, too funny...not telling anybody how to raise their kids but also a parent of 3 here, and yes there are times it's necessary to distract kids and offer them tons of stimulation, but have also learned they need to organize their own games, invent whatever, draw, write, sit down and be bored, learn to play with their own siblings even if there are age differences, come up with creative ideas of their own I guess is what I'm trying to say. Used to try and be the Best Parent Ever,not a day we didn't do something Super Exiting etc...you know what? What my kids remember most are play dates w a special friend, or that afternoon they made something with their own hands in playdough....
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