Source: Indys Child Parenting Magazine

Downtown Attractions Are Alive Mid-Winter

January 01, 2013

January can certainly be a slow time for anyone, let alone for kids as they crawl their way back to school from winter break. The days are short, cold weather is here to stay for another couple of months and January is a notoriously difficult time to stay active. Thankfully, many of Downtown Indianapolis’ top attractions offer activities and exhibits for the whole family, many indoors and some at cheaper winter rates. Check out some of the great options below for family fun:

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis, as most Hoosiers know, is widely recognized as the best children’s museum in the world, and as such, hosts some world-class interactive exhibits throughout the month. Hot Wheels® for Real, which features life-sized fantasy cars and allows visitors to customize a Hot Wheels® car of their own, will be open through Spring. Other fun, interactive exhibits include Dinosphere, Take Me There: Egypt, and Mr. Bear’s Playhouse for younger kids, among many other great options. Open Tue. – Sun. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; $17.50 for adults and $12.50 for youth.

The Indiana State Museum provides one of the most fun, educational experiences in town for kids of all ages. Through mid-February, see professional photography way up close at Nikon Small World, which displays work from some of the world’s best photomicrographers (don’t worry, I had to Google that word too). While you’re there, check out their many permanent exhibits like Ancient Seas and Birth of the Earth. Open Mon. – Sat. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sun. 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; $9.50 for adults and $5 for kids.

The Indianapolis Zoo offers some of the best winter, family fun downtown, and has several indoor areas like the Oceans building, Deserts Biome and of course the world-class Dolphin Pavilion. Sign up for the Dolphin In-Water Adventure and learn to do what professional dolphin trainers do on a daily basis! The zoo is open Wed. – Sun. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.; $10 for adults and $8 for kids – save a dollar if you buy your tickets online!

The Indiana Historical Society has unique “You Are There” exhibits that allow visitors to step into the past and experience first-hand major themes and events from the past century. 1939: Healing Bodies, Changing Minds takes visitors back to June of ’39 as African-American physician Dr. Harvey Middleton introduces new forms of medical treatment. Be sure to stop by to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day Jan. 21 for family-friendly activities and live entertainment from the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra of Indianapolis, Traci’s Urban Dance Jamm Studio and more! Open Tue. – Sat. 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; $7 for adults and $5 for kids 5 – 17. Children under 5 get in FREE.

The Central Library hosts a number of kids events including Science Odyssey Activities: The Human Body Puzzle which allows kids (and parents) to participate in brain-building activities using laptops, webcams, drawing tablets, books and more. Stop by on weekend afternoons throughout January! Library events are always FREE.

The Indiana Ice offer fantastic, inexpensive family fun throughout January. Trust me, you do not need to be a big hockey fan to enjoy an Ice game. The hometown team plays four home games in January, on the 4th, 11th and 13th at Bankers Life Fieldhouse and at Pan Am Plaza on the 5th. Get into a game for only $11 for adults and $9 for kids.

These are just some of the many fun things to experience in Downtown Indianapolis this time of year. For more information, be sure to visit, download the Indy Downtown mobile app and follow @IndyDT on twitter. The website and mobile app have Downtown Indy’s best event listing plus interactive maps, traffic and parking information and much more. Don’t forget to look up Martin Luther King Jr. Day events Downtown!