Hello, Kansas City! It’s hard to believe that we’re in the last couple of weeks of December, and that soon, we’ll kick off 2017. The new year brings us some great fun at SeaLife Kansas City and Legoland Discovery Center down at Crown Center. Our Mom Squad Ambassador, Darcy gives us the low down of what to expect in January (along with a promo code for 1 child free with 1 paid adult ticket). Check it out!
Kick Off the New Year at SeaLife Kansas City
& Legoland Discovery Center
Winter is here and keeping the kiddos busy can be tough. Luckily, Kansas City has many options for keeping your family entertained. One of the most popular and unique options is SEA LIFE Kansas City and LEGOLAND Discovery Center.
SEA LIFE has an exciting new addition, Moko, a Māori wrasse. These fish grow to be over 6 feet long and up to 400 pounds! Moko is only about 2 and a half feet long right now, but will continue to grow here in Kansas City. You can find Moko in the big sting ray tank. These fish are beautiful with intricate blue markings all over. An endangered species, Moko is here to raise awareness for the importance of caring for the ocean and coral reefs. I had the pleasure of interviewing an aquarist live on iFamilyKC’s Facebook page last week. We learned all sorts of fun things about Māori wrasses, like other names they go by, how Moko got his name, how their gender changes as they grow and that Moko loves to eat shrimp! SEA LIFE also has some new baby seahorses near Moko’s display that were fun to see.
LEGOLAND is another fun option. With areas to run around, stations for building with Legos and various rides to go on, you can easily fill an entire day with family fun. My kids love building their own Lego pizzas whenever we go. The 4D theater is a fun spot to enjoy a quick show and rest tired bodies before they find their next activity. If you buy your LEGOLAND tickets online, right now you can get 1 child in free with 1 paid adult! Just enter the promo code 1409. This offer is valid until January 31st, 2017, however the visit can be scheduled for a later date. This is an awesome deal and I hope you can take advantage of it at least once! This would also make a great stocking stuffer- what kid wouldn’t love a trip to LEGOLAND Discovery Center?
When I moved to the Kansas City metro area a little more than 9 years ago, I had no idea how incredible the metro area is for families. Fast forward to 2016 and I am in love with this town. KC has so much to offer families with children and staycactioning (new word!) has become one of our favorite things to do. Today I want to share my 11 favorite activities that you can do in downtown KC with your kids. Whether you live in the area or are planning a weekend trip, there is no shortage of fun activities you can enjoy. Best of all, with the brand new streetcar that offers free service between Union Station to River Market, you can park once and experience it all! Take a look…
Top 11 Downtown Kansas City Family Fun Spots!
#1 Union Station’s Exhibits
With such rich history, Union Station easily became one of my favorite go to spots here in Kansas City and their exhibits bring something new and interesting to the experience with each visit. The current exhibit, Body Worlds & The Cycle of Life gives guests the opportunity to look inside themselves like never before. The educational exhibit provides an in depth look at the human body over time and is a powerful example of how our choices make an impact on the body.
Ages – This activity is great for older children and adults
Price Point – Around $20 per person
Pro Tip – Union Station members receive a hefty discount on exhibits. Take advantage of the perks!
#2 Science City
Also inside Union Station, and free for members, each of Science City‘s three stories offers fun, exploration, and education for children (and adults) of all ages. Your family will have the opportunity to learn about alternative energy sources, take a ride on a bicycle suspended on a wire, dig for “fossils”, test their strength with the giant lever, explore the universe, and more during your visit.
Ages – This activity is great for school aged children
Price Point – $11.50 (ages 3-12), $13.50 (adults)
Pro Tip – Reserve a spot in the test kitchen to give your kids the chance to learn the chemistry in the foods they eat.
#3 Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium
Located on the bottom floor of Union Station (near the exhibit hall), the Arvin Gottlieb Planetarium is an incredible resource to discover the joys of astronomy. Take a guided star tour or explore space through one of the fun movies, your family will enjoy the shows at the planetarium. Our family recently enjoyed a guided tour of the stars we can see in the Kansas City summer night and it was truly fascinating. The list of all available presentations can be found on their website.
Hours – Varies By Show (Shows Run Daily)
Ages – Varies By Show
Price Point – $6 per person (members get in free!)
Pro Tip – Get there early, they have two very comfortable cushions that are ideal for your stargazing adventure!
#4 National World War I Museum
Easily one of my personal favorite spots in the downtown area, the National World War I Museum offers incredible insight to one of history’s most critical times and the most incredible views atop Liberty Memorial. During your visit, you’ll see real life artifacts from the era, learn about our nation’s (late) role in the war, and the impact it had on the world as a whole. Admission includes a two day ticket so you can take in both the educational experience inside the museum as well as the stunning views at the memorial back to back during your visit.
Hours – Tuesday thru Sunday 10am-5pm (check the website for extended summer hours)
Ages – Best for older children and adults
Price Point – $14 and under (varies by age)
Pro Tip – Hands On History sessions are included free with admission on select Saturdays. These sessions give you the chance to get up close and personal with real artifacts from World War I. Check online for the schedule.
#5 SeaLife Kansas City
SeaLife Kansas City is a fun, interactive experience for children and adults who appreciate the creatures that live in the sea. During your visit, your family will have the opportunity to get their hands on critters, learn about some fascinating sea life, and enjoy the fun of their current exhibit, Doodle Reef, which gives you the chance to draw your own fish and watch them come to life.
Hours – Sunday thru Thursday 10am-5pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am-6pm
Ages – This attraction is great for kids of all ages (your little ones will love it!)
Price Point – Starting at $11 per person
Pro Tip – The attraction stays open two hours after the last admission so don’t worry if you don’t arrive until 4pm on a Thursday, you’ll still have time to get it all in!
#6 Legoland Discovery Center
Located next door to SeaLife at Crown Center, Legoland Discovery Center is a fun places for the kids. From 4D animated movie adventures on the big screen to the rides, play area, and legos everywhere this attraction has something for everyone. Your family will enjoy building and playing together inside Legoland’s expansive facility. Check out their website for special activities and adult only events for Lego fans of all ages and stages. Combo passes to both SeaLife and Legoland can be purchased so that you can enjoy both attractions at a discounted rate.
Hours – Sunday thru Thursday 10am-5pm, Friday and Saturday 10am-6pm
Ages – This attraction is great for families of all ages
Price Point – Starting at $14.50 per person
Pro Tip – Be sure to check their website for extra special events throughout the year
Kaleidoscope is located at Crown Center and is a free activity that offers children the opportunity to create, explore, and design works of art using leftover materials from Hallmark. It’s a fun place to let your child’s creativity and imagination shine and has offered our family countless hours of fun over the last few years. Be sure to check their schedule online as they do fill up and space is limited.
Hours – Open Monday thru Saturday, Admission subject to availability
Ages – Great for kids of all ages. Primary school aged children will love this!
Price Point – Free
Pro Tip – Kaleidoscope accepts group visits, plan a trip with your friends and family
#8 Mesner Puppet Theater
Mesner Puppet Theater is a non-profit professional puppet theater is located in the downtown area at 31st & Troost and aims to stir creative imagination through classic, folk, and contemporary plays for children and adults. These exciting performances are so unique and fun. Their list of upcoming performances is available on their website and extends into 2017.
Hours – Varies by show
Ages – Good for all ages
Price Point – Starting at $9
Pro Tip – Season tickets provide the best value. Grab 10 tickets for just $80 (also good for special engagements)
#9 Sprint Family Fun Days
If your dates are flexible and you’re interested in exploring Kansas City’s Power & Light district with your family, Sprint Family Fun Days offers the perfect opportunity for you to do just that. These fun days take place on the second Saturday of each month (May-October) and provide entertainment, activities, and more for children and families of all ages.
Hours – Check their website for specifics
Ages – Great for families of all ages
Price Point – Free admission (some activities within the event do cost)
Pro Tip – Start your day at River Market and take the Streetcar to Power & Light to avoid congested traffic.
#10 – The College Basketball Experience
The College Basketball Experience at Sprint Center lets you step inside the game for hours of fun and activity. CBE offers more than 41,000 square feet of highly interactive, energetic fun where guests can learn about the incredible contributions that have been made in men’s collegiate basketball. Exhibits include the opportunity to participate in game-like situations and announcing at the ESPNU broadcast desk.
Pro Tip – Be sure to wear comfortable shoes so that you can take advantage of all the fun at CBE
#11 Matin City Melodrama
Located on the third floor inside Crown Center, Martin City Melodrama has been serving the Kansas City community for 31 seasons. In addition to their fun line up of family friendly shows, they also offer Kids Komedy camps and other great activities for children who are interested in performing arts.
Hours – Varies By Show
Ages – Fun For All Ages
Price Point – Around $13 per person
Pro Tip – Reservations are essential, space fills up quickly!
Whether you’re visiting the area for a few days or you live close by, the downtown area has so much to offer families here in the metro area. Connect with us on the iFamilyKC Facebook page for more information on Kansas City fun!
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Remember the Parker Brothers board game “Careers” or the all girls career board game, “What Shall I Be?” If not that’s okay, they don’t even sale them anymore! The main idea behind the games was to help boys and girls develop career goals by exposing them to different professions. With so many career choices it can be hard to make up ones mind. A large percentage of college students switch majors because of indecision. Jerry Seinfeld is the voice of the Honeybee Barry B. Benson in “The Bee Movie”, and his big dilemma is committing to one career for life! Making career decisions can be difficult with so many choices! “Funville” at Crown Center gives the kids fun hands on opportunities so that they can start to discover their interests beginning at a young age! Whether it’s a tightrope walker in the circus or a professional surfer on the beach; funville has many “fun” choices!
Funville is a great place to let the kids experience grown up opportunities using hands on props in a stimulating environment. Kids can ride bulls, tractors, surfboards, become football players, racecar drivers, magicians, artists, weather forecasters, restaurant owners, zookeepers and veterinarians to name a few. The artwork is inviting and the interesting props makes for a great place to take colorful, fun pictures that you’re sure to love!
My eight-year-old daughter made the cutest weather forecaster while using and improving her questionable geography skills and my five year old did a good job filming her! The kiddos had lots of fun pretending to be artists; they drew portraits of each other on the chalkboard easel. They took turns riding the waves on the surfboard while another kiddo was the lifeguard!
It would be nice if my son could have this much fun while choosing a college major. However, with so many fun choices, the kids had a hard time choosing just one grown up job!!