Source: Indys Child Parenting Magazine

Indoor Fun Around Indy
Family friendly events, exhibits and more

by Angie Barnes

November 01, 2011

The weather may be getting cold outside, but that doesn’t mean you and the kids have to stay inside all winter long. Whether you’re looking for family outings, or fitness fun, there is plenty to do around town that will keep you busy and help you shake off those winter blues.


Beginning this month, treat yourself and the kids to a history lesson at The Eiteljorg Museum. The JingleRails exhibit takes you on a journey to the Great American West, which begins in our own backyard. Watch and explore as you walk through the exhibit, winding past the local treasures of downtown Indianapolis, seeing some of the Circle City’s famous landmarks such as Monument Circle and Union Station.

From there you’ll travel out West to explore other national landmarks like the Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore, Yosemite Falls and more.

“What makes this trip unique is that all of these wonderful landmarks are made of natural materials like bark, nuts and moss,” said Anthony Scott, communication director at The Eiteljorg Museum.

Take a journey through the centuries and get a history lesson about one of the Hoosier state’s cash crops – corn – at the Indiana State Museum's exhibit Amazing Maize: The Science, History and Culture of Corn. This exhibit has been in devlopment for over five years and is ongoing through Jan. 20, 2013.

For those who like to burn off your winter boredom with exercise, there is plenty to do for you as well.

Winter Fitness

On November 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., join The Children’s Museum for an indoor fitness extravaganza at PlayFit: Indoor Fitness. Celebrate healthy choices and active play with special performances and activities.

Lace up your skates and hit the ice for ice skating at the Indiana State Fairgrounds at the Pepsi Coliseum. Public skate hours vary. Admission: $5 adults ages 13 and older; $4 ages 12 and under. Non-skating parents are FREE. Skate rental: $3 for figure skates; $4 for hockey skates.

Your kids can also get fit at the Jewish Community Center (JCC) of Indianapolis. The center is teamed up with the Indiana Pacers and is offering co-ed youth basketball leagues all winter long. Kids in grades K-3 are welcome to hit the hardwood for the 12-week season.

If your princess isn’t into shooting hoops, the JCC also offers various dance classes that will be sure to get her toes tapping and will have her doing her best pirouette in no time. Visit for more information.

Also at the JCC this winter, you can get a leg up on the competition and start your training for the JCC’s Annual Indoor Triathlon on Jan. 29, 2012. Competitive and non-competitive runners, swimmers and bikers ages 13 and up are welcome. Not a member of the center? Don’t worry the event is open to non-members as well.

Santa Sightings

Santa himself will arrive at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis on November 25, the same day their annual Jolly Days Winter Wonderland exhibit begins thru Jan. 8, 2012.

Don’t forget to let your good little boys and girls tell Santa what is topping their lists this year, at the YMCA’s Annual Breakfast with Santa, sponsored by RJE Business interiors. For information on dates/times, check with the YMCA nearest you,

Events and Activities

The most famous purple dinosaur is Circle City bound for Barney Live: Birthday Bash. Barney and his friends, Baby Bob, BJ and Riff will take center stage at the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre on November 17. Showtimes begin at both 3 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.. Ticket prices range from $15 to 30, prior to fees.

Even the animals are getting into the holiday season. Take a visit to Christmas at the Zoo as you enjoy the animals that love cooler weather. Walk the Zoo grounds covered in lights, and enjoy holiday activities from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. each night. Christmas at the Indianapolis Zoo begins November 25 and runs thru December 23. Open Wednesday thru Sunday, closed Monday and Tuesdays, Christmas Eve and Day.

Are your children looking to let their creative juices flow? Check out the Indianapolis Art Center, as they offer lots of classes during the winter months for kids. Visit for more information.