Ah, the long, lazy days of summer… Unless you have kids! As wonderful as it is to have them home from school, it can also be a chore to come up with ways to keep them entertained and keep their busy minds occupied. Fortunately, Harrisonburg offers a wide variety of activities to help you keep the kids happy and engaged this summer! Check out some of the fun ways to get out and enjoy the season:
Arts & Crafts
Get your kids into science and archaeology! This unique shop is a delightful place to introduce them to rocks, gems, and fossils. The board games they offer keep kids interested and entertained, and they can create their own treasure chest for their favorite finds.
Trendy Glass & Beads
This treasure trove of beads is the perfect way to prepare for an afternoon of jewelry making! The wide variety of materials allows kids to create their own project and make jewelry they can wear and share.
Smart & Fun
Massanutten Regional Library
The library is a great place for kids to discover the joys of reading! Our local library is a must for kids when it’s hot outside and they need a little time to cool off. The library is also a wonderful way to keep their brains working over those long summer months between school years.
Harrisonburg Fire Department Museum
Kids are always interested in firefighters – they are real live heroes and kids can always connect to that! Monday – Friday from 9am – 4pm, you can explore displays or memorabilia and touchscreen enactments of fire scenarios that will help your kids know what to do in a fire.
Glen’s Fair Price
Glen’s Fair Price is a fantasy land for your children! They offer costumes, trinket, toys, and all the trappings of a child’s trip into the imagination. Allow them to pick out some costumes and some props for a homemade play or allow them to imagine their own project!
Meridian Books and Games
Keep those brains working while kids have fun! Pick up some of the offerings from Meridian, including a vast selection of graphic novels, games, and art projects to keep them inspired and occupied.
Take the kids out to appreciate the gorgeous scenery of the surrounding area! Harrisonburg is a short drive from both the Shenandoah National Park and George Washington National Forest, both packed full of great kid-friendly hiking trails to help wear those kids out. Here are a few favorites:
• Stony Man Mountain Trail, Shenandoah National Park
• Bearfence Mountain Trail, Shenandoah National Park
• Dark Hollow Falls Trail, Shenandoah National Park
• Switzer Lake, George Washington National Forest
• Blue Hole, George Washington National Forest
• Riven Rock Park
Mossy Creek Fly Fishing
Teach your children how to fish! Mossy Creek will outfit you so that you can be ready to enjoy some of the renowned fishing holes in the area.
Games & A Quick Bite
The Artful Dodger is an institution in Harrisonburg, having served the area with fun, delicious breakfasts for over 25 years. A wide selection of breakfast choices makes it easy to please any kid, whether they like pancakes, French toast or crepes. Their “Pot o’ Tots” is a kid crowd pleaser, complete with lots of dipping sauce.
Looking for an idea for dinner tonight? Why not take the kids to Ruby’s and let them choose from the large menu of kid-friendly food items and play games while you take a breath. Ruby’s offers a great selection of games to keep the kids involved including billiards, darts, ping pong, air hockey, bowling, and more. Ruby’s also holds tournaments on Wednesdays with games like chess, Super Smash Bros., and foosball.
Pizza should be the official food of summer – or at least most kids think so! Benny Sorrentino’s boasts GIANT slices of pizza that kids love. Grab a pizza to go, or take your kids and their friends for a pizza party in the outside dining area!
The Golden Pony
Kids eat FREE every Tuesday from 5-9 pm, so why not leave the oven off and go catch some dinner at the Golden Pony while the kids play pinball? Their kid-friendly menu will feed the kids while you catch your breath.
Kline’s Dairy Bar
I scream, you scream, we all scream for Kline’s ice cream! If you’re looking for hand made creamy ice cream that is made for hot summer days, look no further than Kline’s for that old fashioned summer delight.
The delicious frozen treats from Bella Gelato are made at the store using mild from Mount Crawford Creamery. With seasonally changing flavors, this smooth, delicious gelato is a must for summer.
Family Night Out
Can’t find a babysitter? Lots of breweries in the downtown Harrisonburg area keep games on hand to entertain kids. Try Brothers Craft Brewing, Pale Fire Brewing Co., Three Notch’d Valley Collab House, Restless Moons Brewing, and The Friendly Fermenter for a night that is fun and entertaining for everyone.