Source: Indys Child Parenting Magazine

Summer Fun Without the Sun
Ten great ways to beat the heat

by Michelle Shirk

July 01, 2013

Warm weather rocks, but it is possible to get too much of a good thing. Fortunately, Indianapolis offers plenty of indoor options for days when temperatures soar too high for outdoor play. Cool down this summer with our list of ten sun-free activities for your family to enjoy, no SPF needed.

1. Create a keepsake. Although intentionally surrounding your child with breakables may seem like a crazy idea, pottery painting is actually a surprisingly kid-friendly activity. At Greenwood’s You Are the Potter (, young artists can create masterpieces out of tiles, dishware, adorable animal-shaped banks and more.

2. Cool off with a good old-fashioned ice cream sundae. Nothing says summer like a double scoop of deliciousness smothered in chocolate syrup. Visit your neighborhood ice cream parlor or make a trip over to Broad Ripple Ice Cream Station ( to choose from tempting flavors like Broad Ripple Blackberry, Village Fudge and Blue Moon.

3. Curl up with a good book.Libraries make fabulous and free sources of indoor summer entertainment. There’s still time to get the kids involved in the Indianapolis Public Library’s Beatles-inspired Summer Reading Program, which runs through July 27th. Visit to find a branch near you.

4. Ask for extra butter. Veg out in an air-conditioned theater while enjoying a family-friendly summer movie like Monsters University (opening June 21st) or Despicable Me 2 (opening July 3rd). Find show times and buy tickets at

5. Host a family luau in your living room. Queue up your favorite reggae music, don sunglasses and serve a picnic lunch on beach towels. If you’re really brave, you can even pass out hula hoops or host an indoor limbo competition!

6. Reach new heights. Climb Time Indy (, an indoor rock-climbing gym, welcomes adventurers of all ages. Day passes for roped climbing cost $12 per person and include free shoe and harness rental for kids under 10. If your family is new to the sport, consider signing up for a private lesson or Kids Club coaching session. All participants or their parents/guardians must complete a waiver before climbing.

7. Help your child channel his or her inner Van Gogh. You may have already heard of Wine & Canvas (, an art franchise that offers step-by-step painting lessons for adults. The Indianapolis studio also hosts Cookies & Canvas events where young artist can recreate works of art with names like “Gumball” and “Frog on the Beach.” Events tend to sell out, so book your art adventure well in advance!

8. Bang on a drum all day. After a visit to Rhythm! Discovery Center (, your family will see percussion instruments in a whole new light. Guests can experiment with sound waves, learn about the history of percussion in radio and film and try out a wide variety of instruments at the museum.

9. Use the Force. Now through September 2nd, the Indiana State Museum ( hosts “Star Wars: Where Science Meets Education.” This traveling exhibit focuses on the technology depicted in the Star Wars series and includes actual props from the films. For an extra charge, guests can even take a simulated spin on the Millennium Falcon!

10. Strike out. When’s the last time you laced up a pair of crazy-colored shoes at your local bowling alley? Kids are sure to enjoy this family-friendly, inexpensive and air-conditioned sport. Check the white pages for lanes near you or head to one of four Royal Pin Leisure Centers ( scattered around the Indianapolis area.

With these ideas, your family should be all set to take a break from the sun without sacrificing fun. Enjoy the rest of your summer!