My Kid Tip today is to take advantage of your local children’s museum. I didn’t even know these existed until I had kids. Don’t let the word, “museum,” turn you off. These are not your typical museums. If it has the word, “children’s” in it, then you can be 95% sure it is more of a hands-on learning and fun discovery place than a “museum.”
Everyone seems to know about the local…
- bounce places
- trampoline places
- laser tag
- bowling (if your kids aren’t bowling for free this summer, you need to read this post! It’s super quick and easy and saves you a ton of money!)
- mini golf
- library (I bet there is something on this list of 11 FREE things at the library you are not taking advantage of this summer, and you NEED to be taking advantage of it this summer!)
- water parks
- amusement parks
I could go on and on.
But I rarely hear of anyone going to the Children’s Museum. These can be super entertaining and often informational (but in a hands-on, fun way)! It’s just a good way to mix up your summer. For those local to me, I am a HUGE fan of the Children’s Museum of Stockton, the World of Wonders Science Museum in Lodi, and the Sacramento Children’s Museum (located here in Rancho Cordova).All three of these are EXCELLENT places to take your kids.
The Children’s Museum of Stockton and the Sacramento Children’s Museum are geared more toward younger kids (I would say ages 2-8ish??). The World of Wonders Science Museum in Lodi is super fun for all ages, in my opinion. My 4-year-old was highly engaged the entire time we were there, and so was my 11-year-old (and all the kids inbetween).Where else can you create your own pinball game? And be a pilot?And look through mirrors that go to infinity? And blow gigantic bubbles? I mean, I even had a blast doing the 2-way mirror with my kids. Kinda creepy! AND….
What would a kid tip be, without a way to save money?! I’ve got you covered!
Ways to save money on entry to a children’s museum
- Check out my 11 Sneaky Ways the Library Can Transform Summer & Road Trips post to get the scoop on possibly scoring FREE entry to your local children’s museum. I happen to live in Rancho Cordova, and learned that the Rancho Cordova branch has free passes for the Sacramento Children’s Museum that you can check out for a week at a time! This is huge! So if you are local, take advantage of that! Be sure to go to the post I did on ways to use your library, and get the details on it there!
- Check their website to see if they have a coupon (I have seen coupons on the homepages of some places, as well as on the hours/prices/tickets page. Or sometimes if you just do a quick search in the search bar for “coupon” or “discount,” something will come up).
- Most of these places offer an annual family pass. When my kids were teeny, I bought a year pass to the Children’s Museum in Stockton, and it was SO WORTH IT! They even let me apply the cost of the tickets I had bought that day to get in, to the cost of the year membership. If you show interest in possibly buying a year pass when you pay to get in, they may allow you to do that – just ask. I only mention that because if it’s your first time, you would definitely want to see if your kids love it enough (and if there are enough different things to do) to make it worth it.
- GROUPON! I know for a fact that the WOW Science Museum in Lodi is on Groupon A LOT!
- Call and ask if they have any discounts available. Be specific! There is a good chance you will get a teenager who doesn’t really care all that much about saving you money, and won’t dig deep inside their brain to give you a complete answer. Giving a quick list of options to possibly jog their memory may help them help you.
- Do they have a certain day of the week that is cheaper than others?
- Do they have a certain timeframe each day that is cheaper than others?
- Are there any coupons or deals available from other sources that you could snag before making the trip? (for example: a local newspaper, library, store, restaurant, etc. Sometimes you can find coupons to places like this at other local places that are helping promote it).
- Do they have a military discount?
- Do they have a senior discount? (if so, suggest that grandma takes them for the morning, and gives you a kid-free house to start the EASY journey to getting your family prepared for emergencies, with my step-by-step posts. Of course you should start with Step 1, but if you are looking to really take advantage of a solid chunk of time, might I suggest Step 4, as it is extremely important and you can knock it out in a couple hours).
- Do they have a student discount? (if so, use the same tactic above, and have an older sibling, aunt, uncle, niece, cousin, etc take the kids to the museum and give you some mom time).
WELL???? What are you waiting for?? Get your kids out of the house and go do something new and different! But first, spend under 5 minutes to see if there are any ways to get cheaper admission, using the tips listed above.
Are there any tips I missed? If so, add them in the comments!
I’d love to hear about your experiences with a children’s museum near you! Please comment below, to help others find these awesome resources near them!