Ark Encounter Family Adventure! Kids 10 & Under are FREE

4 hours, 3 potty breaks, 2 meals, & 1 car-full of kiddos constantly asking, “How many more minutes”, and we arrived! Well, almost….we parked, paid, hopped on a bus, and, then WOW!!! I think everyone’s jaws dropped, lol!

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The scale was just so HUGE!

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Full-Size Noah’s Ark

Noah’s Ark was larger than most people realize. At 510 feet long, 51 feet high, and 85 feet wide (converted to modern measurements), the numbers alone do not express the immensity of the biblical ship.

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The craftsmanship was astounding! The historic accuracy was very impressive.

Ark Encounter is the largest timber-frame structure in the world, built in part by skilled Amish craftsmen from standing dead timber. Source: https://arkencounter.com/exhibits/

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We toured the Living Quarters and had the opportunity to see how Noah and his family might have lived on the Ark, from cooking food to sleeping, recreation, and even gardening!

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After viewing all 3 decks and all the exhibits we headed outside for more pics!

Outside the Ark, there’s tons more to do… their 2,500-seat Answers Center hosts daily programs, concerts and presentations, there’s a zoo, zip lining, & awesome massive family playground.

If you are looking for something totally outside the norm to do over Spring Break or Summer Break in 2020 the Ark Encounter is a great family friendly destination especially given the fact that kiddos 10 and under are FREE for all of 2020!!

Ark Encounter

Address: 1 Ark Encounter Dr, Williamstown, KY 41097

Phone: (855) 284-3275

Website: https://arkencounter.com/

Hours: Vary with seasons, click on link to see current hours https://arkencounter.com/hours/

Tickets:  One-day ticket to the Ark + free Second-day grounds ticket

Adult (ages 18–59)          $49.95

Senior (ages 60+)             $39.95

Youth (ages 11–17)         $24.95

Children (ages 10 and under)      FREE

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A Mother’s Raw & Emotional Story: Giving Birth to a child with CHD

As many of you know February is National Heart Month, in fact this February marks the 56th consecutive American Heart Month. The first proclamation was issued by President Lyndon B. Johnson in February 1964, nine years after he had a heart attack. The federally designated event reinforces the importance of heart health since heart disease is the #1 killer of Americans.  It also addresses the need for more research, with a reminder to get families, friends and communities involved. (Source: https://www.heart.org/en/around-the-aha/february-marks-56th-consecutive-american-heart-month )

Heart disease seems to touch everyone in some way….some of my earliest memories as a child were of my mother crying over her mother’s deteriorating health. My grandmother was always in and out of the hospital due to complications with type II diabetes leading ultimately to bypass surgery, kidney dialysis and eventually passing away from complications with congestive heart failure at the young age of 63. Thus, most of my childhood, and early adulthood I had always associated Heart Disease with older individuals. That is until my amazing friend, Mary, whom after waiting years for a second child, found out she was expecting a baby girl. Mary was over the moon in love with her sweet baby girl before she was even born, you could practically see the beams of joy exuding from her face.  What happened next was a shock, but it’s not my story to tell, it is Mary. Mary was kind enough to share her story with us…you might want to grab a Kleenex or two.

 

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I sit and write to you after reading multiple other stories of moms and kids with Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) and realize, this is hard…

I don’t want to tell the whole story because it makes me cry just thinking of it. It was a very hard time.

I will write what I can…

My daughter was, what I thought, a normal pregnancy.  I was 36 years old, which in medical terms is not normal, it is deemed advanced maternal age and therefore more risks.  We knew there were some risks at that, but I was sure God would make everything ok.  He had brought me through a 4 week premature baby with no problems, so I was sure God would take care of getting through this pregnancy.  There was no mention of Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) by the doctor, and only a small blurb on it in 1 out of 3 of the pregnancy books I read.

Well the pregnancy went ok and her due date came and went.  The next day I had a dr. appointment and they said I was having contractions but sent me home to rest until they felt consistent.  Later that night we went into the hospital to have our baby girl. Little did I know what would come next!

After giving birth, my baby girl was having trouble keeping her temp up, and afterwards when they thought she was fine I was allowed to try nursing her.  Well, as I tried I noticed her hands and feet were purple.  I asked the nurses and they said it was ok.  We finally were heading to the postpartum room and stopped to give her to the nurse for a bath.  After that, I was unable to hold my baby for a week.

I remember getting some sleep but waking up feeling like I needed to nurse my baby and could not get a hold of anyone to find out where my baby was.  They said to get some sleep and the next thing I remember was a cardiologist in my room telling me my baby’s heart was not right and she is in the NICU but will need to be sent to University of Michigan for open heart surgery.  She was diagnosed with Partial A.P.V.R. but after arriving at Uof M, was diagnosed with Total Anomolus Pulmonary Veinus Return.

At 27 hours old, after giving consent over the phone, my daughter’s heart was surgically altered.  The surgery lasted 5 or 6 hours.  We were finally allowed to see her and walked into the room with my daughter’s chest wide open with a film covering it.  You could see her heart beating through it.

Crying hard now so moving on….

I did not know anything about Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) so I started to promote CHD Awareness with a photo project of other kids and families.  I started it after Shelby, my baby girl, had her 2nd OHS to remove scar tissue to open the hole in her heart.  Each year in January I take photos and tell some of their CHD stories.

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Please take the time to checkout Mary’s photo’s that bring awareness to CHD & be sure to follow her page where she offers beautiful family photo package opportunities with a percentage of it going back to CHD awareness through the end of February for any full session book for March and/or April

Facebook: Frosted Designs 

Website: Frosted Designs by Mary Frost Co

Instagram: Frosted Designs 

Additional resources Mary recommends include,

Conqueringchd.org

Heart.org

Mendedhearts.org

A huge thank you and virtual hugs goes out to Mary for having the courage to share such a raw and emotional time in her life with us in an effort to bring awareness to CHD.

If you have any comments or questions for Mary or perhaps have a story you would like to share comment below.

 

Indoor Play Guide 2020

Just because the weather isn’t cooperating doesn’t mean the fun has to end! Here’s a list of some awesome kid-friendly indoor destinations to visit in NW/NE Ohio and SE Michigan that will allow the adventures to continue no matter the weather!

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Dave & Busters (Local)

Family-friendly chain offering a sports-bar-style setting for American food & arcade games.

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Address: 5001 Monroe St, Toledo, OH 43623

Hours: Monday-Thursday and Sundays 10AM–12AM Fridays & Saturdays 10AM-2AM

Phone: (419) 481-9800

Website: https://www.daveandbusters.com/

Admission: Varies

Funagin’s (Local)

Boys and girls, men and women, colleagues, families, bridal parties, and networking groups have all escaped to Funagin’s for exciting, belly-laughing fun with options for all ages!

Get dirty in an adrenaline pumping game of paintball. Or outwit your opponents with your unbeatable laser tag strategies. Climb, slide, and run around like a kid (even if you aren’t one) on our new giant indoor playground straight from memories of King Jason’s childhood. And nothing beats the fun of skating around on our new Roller Rink with your whole family!

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Address: 5340 Centennial Rd, Sylvania, OH 43560

Phone:(419) 517-1750

Website: https://www.funagins.com/ 

Cost: Varies, click on website for info

 

Imagination Station (Local)

Phone: (419) 244-2674

Address: 1 Discovery Way, Toledo, OH 43604

Website: http://www.imaginationstationtoledo.org/

CTY imagine22p Lynsey Garber, 10, a fifth grader at Ottawa River Elementary, rides the high wire bike at Imagination Station, Wednesday, March 21, 2012. The Blade/Andy Morrison

Imagination Station, Toledo’s Science Center, is dedicated to making science, technology, engineering and mathematics fun and accessible. There are hundreds of interactive, hands-on exhibits that are fun and educational for the entire family. Whether you only have an hour or you have all day, there is plenty to see and do at Imagination Station. Come join us and explore everything that Imagination Station has to offer!

Operating Hours:

Tuesday – Saturday: 10am – 5pm

Sunday: Noon – 5pm

Monday: CLOSED

Admission Prices:

Big Kids (13 – 64): $13

Kids (3 – 12): $12

Seniors (65+): $11

Children 2 & under: Free

NickelWorld (Local)

NickelWorld is a unique concept in Family Entertainment. They have Over 100 Games!! All Games Operate with NICKELS!! While some Games Take Two or Three Nickels, MOST Games are one Nickel each to play!! PLUS, they have 13 FREE GAMES!! Most Games also WIN TICKETS to trade in for all sorts of PRIZES!!

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Address: 2545 S Reynolds Rd, Toledo, OH 43614

Hours: Open 7 days a week, 11AM–10PM

Phone: (419) 385-3297

Website:http://www.nickelworldtoledo.com/

Admission: $2.50 to enter and then however many nickels you would like…$5 is usually more than enough

 

Q-Zar (Local)

This entertainment center known for its large laser tag arena also has arcade games & hosts parties.

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Address: 5836 Monroe St, Sylvania, OH 43560

Hours: Thursday 5-9pm, & Friday 5–11PM Closed Monday-Wednesday, and on Saturdays 12pm-11pm & Sundays 12pm-6pm

Phone: (419) 885-3460

Website:https://www.qzartoledo.com/

Admission: Laser Tag Prices -$9 One game of laser tag, $16.00 Two game pack, & $12.00 Three game pack

 

Sky Zone (Local)

Phone: (419) 491-1194

Address: 1600 Albon Rd. Holland, OH 43528

Website: http://www.skyzone.com/Toledo

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Warrior Course-Enter a jumper. Exit a warrior. For athletes looking to push themselves, the Warrior Course will put your abilities to the test. Take on a variety of obstacles in a test of speed, strength, and agility. Go for a personal record or dominate your friends.

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Parkour Blox-Ready to level up? Test your parkour skills to the next level on the Freestyle court using the foam vault blocks. Train your speed, power, and strength by practicing on hurdles placed in your path.

SkyLadder– Another balance challenge, SkyLadder challenges you in a different way: off your feet. Climb this fidgeting ladder to the top and plant your flag. Or fall into the padding below, get up, and try again.

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Ultimate Dodge Ball– Remember that ever popular rite of passage game from childhood that would have you ducking and dodging the ball? Guess what happens when you add Sky Zone’s patented wall-to-wall trampolines to the ever popular game of dodge ball? Ultimate Dodge ball!!

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Foam Zone– Run and jump, flip, and fly into a huge pit filled with 10,000 foam cubes. Defy gravity; work on your fancy air poses, or just wing it, no matter how you fly fun will always be your copilot!

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Sky Slam– Wish you could slam dunk like an NBA player? Guess what? Sky Zone is making your dream come true! Pair Sky Zone’s basketball hoops, (each set at various heights to accommodate even the littlest slam dunkers) with a trampoline and you will be dunking like a pro in no time!

Freestyle Jump– The main court offers you the freedom to take flight in your own defined space; you don’t have to worry about anyone else jumping in your square.

Comfort Zone– Sky Zone hasn’t forgotten about parents, grandparents, and chaperons. This is where you can sit, watch television, relax, have a snack, and still chaperon your children.

There is no age limit on jumpers; if you can walk you can jump. Destress and have a blast jumping and possibly even flipping in/on Sky Zone’s awesome trampoline courts. Simply sign the waiver, get your jump time, put on your Sky Zone Socks and reach for the sky! Enjoy full access to the park, including, the Main Court, Ultimate Dodgeball, SkySlam, the Foam Zone, etc. Sky Zone also offers food and beverages so you can recharge after all that jumping. If you wish to expedite your experience you can sign the waiver and get jump time in advance, so you can get kiddos on the courts ASAP!

Hours: Vary, click on link, https://www.skyzone.com/toledo 

PRICING: 60 MINUTE JUMP PASS – $15.99, 90 MINUTE JUMP PASS – $19.99, 120 MINUTE JUMP PASS – $22.99

Sylvania Playland (Local)

Phone: (419) 517-9094

Address: 3620 Centennial Rd, Sylvania, OH 43560

Website: http://sylvaniaplayland.com/

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Sylvania Playland is the one and only indoor bounce house and playground in Sylvania! Come in and play on their five inflatables, four swing sets and toddler area. Our glow-in-the-dark mini golf is now OPEN! 18 holes, 4 themes (underwater, pirates, dinosaurs, knights and dragons). Win prizes in their arcade and have a taste of Toft’s ice cream!

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Hours: Sunday – Thursday: 10 AM – 8 PM

Friday & Saturday: 9 AM – 9 PM

Cost: Ages 1-3 1 hour bounce is $7 (unlimited $10)

Ages 4-12 1 hour bounce is $10 (unlimited $14)

18 hole Mini Indoor Golf $7 (unlimited $10)

1 Hour of Bounce and 1 Round of Golf……………$15.00

Unlimited Bounce and Unlimited Golf………………$20.00

 

Toledo Playzone (local)

Playzone Toledo is a family owned and operated family fun center with one goal in mind – to make sure you and your family have as much fun as possible!

We have a wide variety of entertainment to offer, with our state of the art Laser Tag arena, brand-new bumper cars, and hundreds of arcade games to choose from, even the youngest of kids can enjoy their time here with our arcade games. Our options are as endless as the smiles you’ll have. If you get worn out from all the activities, we have a fully stocked Café and plenty of seating for you to grab a snack – or a meal – and recharge.

From our Family to yours, we hope to see you soon!

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Address:  130 New Towne Square Dr, Toledo, OH 43612

Phone:  (419) 540-0000

Website: https://playzonetoledo.com/ 

Cost: It’s complicated click on the website

Hours: Monday – Thursday: 12PM – 9PM, Friday: 12PM – 10PM, Saturday: 10AM – 10PM, Sunday 11AM – 9PM

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Jungle Junction (Bellevue, OH)

Phone: 419.484.5532

Address: 110 Cherry Blvd. Bellevue, Ohio 44811

Website: http://www.junglejunctionplay.com/

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The largest indoor play structure in Ohio! Jungle Junction is an AMAZING fun time for children ages 12 and under. Six levels of adventure with over 60 play features including slides, air cannons, obstacle courses, and interactive game panels keep kids entertained and challenged for hours.  A dedicated toddler tumble zone with molded jungle friends for climbing, crawling and sliding the day away.  Their controlled environment will keep you cool in the summer and warm when the weather turns cold and wet.

Hours: Monday-Thursday: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm (Sensory Day- The first and third Wed. of each month. 10a-2p, no air cannons)

Friday & Saturday: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm

Sunday   Noon – 7:00 pm

DAILY ADMISSION: $6   (ages 2-12)

Parents and Caregivers are FREE!

Children 1 and under are FREE!

Don’t forget your socks!

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“Coolest place EVER!”! “I want to have my B-day party here”!  ”Finally a place for older kids to play”! Those are quotes from my kiddos, age 8-13 yrs old on their experience at Play: CLE.  And I couldn’t agree more, finally a place where older kiddos can let loose and have fun without the fear of trampling a toddler or running down a preschooler. This momma highly recommends Play:CLE for a fun filled afternoon/evening for the entire family (kiddos 7+).

Play:CLE (Cleveland, OH)

Address: 38525 Chester Rd, Avon, OH 44011

Website: https://www.playcle.com/

Phone: (440) 695-3565

Hours: Monday: Closed for Private Events

•Tuesday: 3-9pm; *Ninja Night 7-9pm

•Wednesday: 3-9pm

•Thursday: 3-9pm

•Friday: 3-11pm; College Discount All Day

•Saturday: 10-11pm

•Sunday: 10-8pm

Cost: Pricing for 2-hours is structured as follows:

•Under 18 – $20

•Adult – $25

•65+ – $20

•Family (2 adults, 2 kids) – $80

 

 

 

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Have older kiddos, but not old enough to stay home alone? Play: CLE has you covered, kiddos can play while mom & dad enjoy an impromptu date night complete with a glass of wine/beer and delicious food.

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Or, mom and dad can get their climb on too then everyone can eat together as a family.

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If you’re looking for the place to mix fun and fitness, you’ve come to the right spot. Play: CLE has created a unique mix of attractions that will have kids and adults’ alike running, jumping, climbing and challenging themselves!

  • Zip line
  • Ropes course
  • Climbing wall
  • Ninja warrior course
  • Parkour course
  • Bouldering wall
  • Dining area (The Biner)
  • Kids’ area

 

 

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Michigan Science Center (Detroit, MI)

Phone: 313.577.8400

Address: 5020 John R Street Detroit, MI 48202

Website: http://www.mi-sci.org/

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Explore hands-on exhibits, gaze at the stars, discover new worlds in our IMAX® theatre, and take part in live stage shows. As Michigan’s STEM Hub, we inspire curious minds of all ages.

General admission: $14/adult, $11/child 12 and under or senior citizen (60+).

Children under age two are free.

Check out the additional options/packages on their website. (General admission doesn’t include IMAX theatre)

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Regular Hours:

Monday – Tuesday Closed

Wednesday – Friday 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Saturday  10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Sunday  12 p.m. – 6 p.m.

 

The Mazza Museum (Findlay, OH)

Phone: 419-434-5521

Address: Virginia B. Gardner Fine Arts Pavilion University of Findlay 1000 North Main St.

Findlay, OH 45840

Website: https://www.mazzamuseum.org/visit/

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The Mazza Museum is the most diverse collection of original artwork by children’s book illustrators in the world. The museum’s goal is to promote literacy and enrich the lives of all people through the art of picture books.

“BOOKS TO FILM EXHIBIT”

Many children’s books have been made into films. Come see your favorite characters from movies in their original picture book form…or better yet take note of the books and read them before your see them on film.

“Patricia Polacco Exhibit”-The Keeping Quilt is one of our favorites….Come see why!

Admission: FREE

Museum Hours of Operation:

Wednesday-Friday: Noon – 5 p.m.

Sunday: 1 – 4 p.m.

 

University of Michigan Museum of Natural History (Ann Arbor, MI)

Phone: (734) 764-0478

Address: 1105 North University Ave., Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079 (Look for the “Golden Dome”…that’s the planetarium in the building)

Parking: Free Parking on Sundays! Most non-marked spots in any Campus Faculty/Staff Parking (including Palmer) is free on Sundays. (Do NOT park in Gold, Business Vehicle, or other marked spots.)

Website: https://lsa.umich.edu/ummnh

With the largest display of dinosaurs in Michigan, the University Of Michigan Museum Of Natural History offers an array of educational programs and exhibits for families, students and adults. Exhibits include the Hall of Evolution, Michigan wildlife, anthropology, geology, and several changing exhibits.

Museum Hours: Monday-Sunday 9am-5pm

Admission: FREE to individuals and groups of 10 or fewer. (Suggested donation is $6 per person)

IMAX (Ypsilanti, MI)

Phone: (734) 973-8424

Address: 4100 Carpenter Rd, Ypsilanti, MI 48197

Website: http://www.imax.com/theatres/ann-arbor-20-imax

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Don’t just see a movie, experience it!! An immense explosion….A whisper heard over your shoulder. The rumbling bass you feel instead of hear. The combination of their perfectly tuned integrated sound system and precise speaker orientation ensures you can hear a pin drop and be able to tell exactly where it landed. Every note of the soundtrack and every scuff of a shoe are clearer in IMAX, with a complete overhaul of each movie’s audio overseen by the film’s director. All of this pristine sound is then pumped into a theatre that has been customized for an optimal experience. Clarity, detail and size make IMAX more than a movie. Two projectors run simultaneously to provide the perfect image with a balance of warmth and sharpness. IMAX draws you into something as close to reality as you have ever experienced!

For list of shows and times click on the website above….I do know, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story starts showing this week!

Wednesdays are the discount days…$10 for IMAX all day! (FYI: Kids concessions combo-drink, popcorn, fruit is $5.65)

Snook’s Dream Cars (Bowling Green, OH)

Phone: 419-353-8338

Address: 13920 County Home Rd, Bowling Green, OH 43402-8670

Website: http://www.snooksdreamcars.com/

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Snook’s Dream Cars displays the extensive collection of “long time car guy” Bill Snook (deceased) and operated by his son Jeff Snook. It features a recreated 1940s era Texaco gas station, a showroom of extensive automobile memorabilia and a car collection presented within period scenes ranging from a 1930s general store to a racetrack from the 1960s.The car collection, which features models from the 1930s to the 1960s, includes coupes, convertibles, sedans, roadsters and racecars, made by Cadillac, Ford, Chevrolet, Buick, Pontiac, Packard, Kaiser, Willys, Jaguar, Triumph, MG and Lotus. The facility also houses a complete four-bay shop for maintaining collector cars.

HOURS:

Mon-Fri: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Sat. & Sun: By appointment

ADMISSION:

Adults $8

Seniors $6

Children $5

 

This isn’t Just for the Kids! Fort Clarkston is a relaxing adult environment that just so happens to provide unique & fun activities for kids too!

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Finally a place that understands what moms’ really!! This is the #1 hot spot for children entertainment & adult relaxation combined!! Parents can enjoy free wi-fi, sipping on coffee or tea from the café, or just cozying up with a magazine or book with a tasty treat. You may not even notice your kids as they will be completely mesmerized by the astounding 2,400 square foot playstructure standing 3 levels tall and the 2 level bitty playstructure for the tots. Twisty, bullet and wavy slides will take the children from peaks to valleys, meanwhile the maze, bumper balls and rope climbs engage children of all ages. They also offer redemption games and arcades! Be sure to redeem your tickets at their ticket redemption desk for valuable prizes.

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Fort Clarkston offers a bar where moms can grab a glass of wine or beer and visit with other moms (or enjoy a little solitude), as well as feed the kiddo’s dinner/lunch at the café; it really is a mini vacation for moms!!

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Hours: Monday – Thursday 9am-8pm, Friday and Saturday 9am-9pm, & Sunday 9am-6pm

Address: 7127 Dixie Highway, Clarkston, MI

Phone: (248) 297-5453

Website: http://fortclarkston.com/

Hours: Monday – Thursday 9am-8pm, Friday and Saturday 9am-9pm, & Sunday 9am-6pm

Cost: Mon-Thurs. $10 for the entire day!!   Fri-Sun. $12 for the entire day!!   Parents are $5

While you’re in the area you might want to check out:

 

Spangler Candy Factory Tours (Bryan, OH)

Phone: 419.633.6439

Address: 400 N. Portland St., Bryan, OH 43506

Website: http://www.spanglercandy.com/about-us/tour-store-museum

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Public tours of the factory are available on their Dum Dums Trolley Wednesday through Friday 10 am to 3:00 pm ET. There are no reservations. Tours are on a first come, first served basis. You may wish to call ahead for information. Store & Museum admission is free – tour prices are shown below.

Due to safety and FDA regulations, the trolley tour will not go through the main kitchen areas, but will go through the warehouse areas and their most recent addition, the Portland Street expansion. It is the 87th production expansion in company history and nearly 20,000 square feet in size. Visitors are able to see their palletization area and automatic case packers. Candy cooking and forming in the kitchen areas will be shown via a DVD player while on the trolley tour.

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Hours: Fall/Winter/Spring: Wednesday thru Friday 10am – 3pm

Factory tour prices are: Adults $5, Children 6-18 years $3, Children 5 & Under Free with paid Adult, Seniors $4. Tours will not be offered on any day that is a holiday for the factory.

 

 

Outdoor Adventure Center (Detroit)

Phone: 844-OAC-MDNR (844-622-6367)

Address: 1801 Atwater Street Detroit, MI 48207-4020

Website: http://www.michigan.gov/oac/

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Experience exciting outdoor adventures with hands-on activities, exhibits and simulators — walk behind and touch a waterfall, step into a fishing boat and reel in a big fish, hit the trail on a mountain bike or snowmobile, and much more. At the OAC, you’ll learn about how the DNR manages state parks, forests, wildlife and fish as you climb the roots and explore the canopy of a massive bur oak tree, hop aboard a real airplane, and see what’s swimming in our aquarium.

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Hours:

Monday Closed

Tuesday Closed

Wednesday-Friday   10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Sunday Noon – 5 p.m

Admission:

Adults (age 13-61) $5

Seniors (age 62 and older) $3

Children (ages 2-12) $3

Children under age 2 Free

National Museum of the Great Lakes (Local)

Address: 1701 Front Street Toledo, Ohio 43605

Hours: Tuesdays– Saturdays: 10a.m. – 5p.m., Sundays: Noon – 5p.m., Closed Mondays

Website: http://www.inlandseas.org/

Slug: CTY museum20p THE BLADE/JEREMY WADSWORTH Caption: Life raft recovered from the Edmund Fitzgerald on display at the National Museum of the Great Lakes Thursday, 04/17/14, in Toledo, Ohio.

The National Museum of the Great Lakes is a fun and unique experience for all. Learn about the rich history our Great Lakes have afforded us, making up 84% of all the fresh water in North America it is no surprise they are treasured waters. Explore the history and enjoy some hands-on displays as you learn about one of the world’s greatest natural resources.  Kids will be intrigued by all the means of transit along the Lakes, including the huge ship, the Schoonmaker just outside the museum in the Maumee River, (tours of the ship are offered May-Oct).  Be sure to stop in the museum store so the kiddos can pick out some souvenirs to commemorate their visit.

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Hours of Operation:

Tuesday – Saturday: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

Sunday: 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Admission:

Museum Only: Adult – $11

Museum Only: Senior, AAA, or Military – $10

Museum Only: Kids (6-17) – $8

Museum Only: Toddlers (0-5) – Free

 

Historical Museum of Fulton County

Phone: 419-337-7922

Address: 8848 State Highway 108 Wauseon, OH 43567

Website: https://www.museumoffultoncounty.org/

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Calling all history buffs and those simply intrigued by the vast history located in NW Ohio tour this an amazing 1868 Romanesque Revival two-story brick building that originally housed Wauseon’s first high school, and later, the county’s first hospital. Experience thirteen rooms that showcase permanent historic exhibits of hidden historical gems. Listen to locally written abolition hymns of the Underground Railroad movement in the county; see the crackling campfire of local Civil War soldiers and the museum’s extensive collection of Civil War era artifacts which are the impressive centerpiece of this exhibit.

Call ahead and make an appointment to see the Depot! Two blocks south of the museum, visit the Wauseon Depot. A collection of items from Fulton County’s railroad past, which included 6 steam lines and two electric inner urban lines, is on display inside the depot. Watch and listen to an O-scale working model railroad display that highlights Fulton County’s railroad 1920s hay-day.

Hours: Monday-Saturday: 10:00am – 04:00pm

Sunday: noon-4:00pm

Rates: Adults – 18 and over: $8.00

Seniors – 55 and over: $7.00

Children – 6-15: $3.00

Children 6 & under are FREE

When you’re finished with your awesome tour stop by Red Rambler for a hot cocoa for the kiddos and a Flight of their brewed beers for mom and dad!

Website: http://www.redramblercoffees.com/

 

Toledo Museum of Art (Local)

Phone: (419) 255-8000

Address: 2445 Monroe St, Toledo, OH 43620

Website: http://www.toledomuseum.org/

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Since the founding in 1901, the Toledo Museum of Art has earned a global reputation for the quality of its collection, innovative and extensive education programs, and architecturally significant campus. The main Museum building interior contains four and a half acres of floor space on two levels. It has 45 galleries, 15 classroom studios, the 1,750-seat Peristyle concert hall, the 176-seat Little Theater lecture hall, the Resource Center for Educators, the Family Center, the Visual Resources Collection, the Museum Café, and the Museum Store featuring Collector’s Corner. The Glass Pavilion has five galleries, a glass study room, classrooms, two hotshops, a multipurpose GlasSalon, public and private courtyard space, and a coffee bar.

Family Center: Free, fun, and open to everyone! The TMA Family Center, located in the education wing near the Plough entrance, is the perfect place for our youngest Museum visitors to make and take memories with their parents and caregivers. Drop in for themed activities that enliven the world of art for kids ages 1-10 (and even grown-ups!). Check the calendar on this page for upcoming projects. Calendars can be customized and printed by clicking on the Google Calendar icon at the bottom of the calendar listing.

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Family Center Hours:

Tuesdays & Thursday: 10 a.m.–3 p.m.

Friday: 3:30–8 p.m.

Sunday: noon–5:00 p.m

Admission: The Museum and the Family Center are FREE

Planet Rock (Ann Arbor)

Phone: 734-827-2680

Address: 82 Aprill Dr Ann Arbor, MI 48103

Website: http://www.planet-rock.com/

planetrock

Since 1994, Planet Rock has been providing world class indoor rock climbing. With creative wall design and innovative route setting, Planet Rock enables climbers of all ages and experience levels to love a sport that is like no other. Over 25,000 square feet of climbing surface with walls up to heights of 50′ and routes up to 70′ long, their gyms cater to competitive and recreational climbers alike. The gym also features unique climbing features such as the full-training areas and giant bouldering mushroom. Both beginner and experienced lead climbers will find routes that are both technical and fun. Their dedicated lead climbing walls have extensive lines and challenging features, while their bouldering areas offer interesting topography and an innovative mat system for softer landings.

Hours: Monday- Friday | 3:00PM – 10:00PM

Saturday | 11:00AM – 8:00PM

Sunday | 10:00AM – 6:00PM

Admission: Starter Packages (first time) Price

Adult 14 or older $44.00

Adult and child (5-8) $50.00

additional children (each) $25.00

Adult and child (9-13) $60.00

Additional children (each) $32.00

Daily Passes

Price Adult Daily Pass $17.00

Student / Military Daily Pass $16.00

Kids (5-13) $13.00

Belay only $10.00

Belay check $3.00

Merry-Go-Round Museum (Sandusky)

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Enjoy a fun and relaxed atmosphere while you tour the Merry-Go-Round Museum and learn about the history and art of the carousel. The “oom pa pa” of the band organ, and the “painted ponies” on display will thrill and enchant you.

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Have your smiles ready as you relive your childhood excitement when you climb aboard the working “fully restored” Allan Herschell Carousel with the band organ playing. Watch carvers bring neglected carousel pieces back to their full beauty.

Address: 301 Jackson St Sandusky, OH 44870

Phone: (419) 626-6111

Website: http://www.merrygoroundmuseum.org/

Hours: Wed-Sat: 11am-4pm & Sundays 12pm-4pm

Cost: Adults: $6.00, Senior Citizens: $5.00, Children (4-14): $4.00, (under 4): FREE (The cost Includes 1 Ride Token)

While you’re in the area you might want to check out:

African Wildlife Safari http://www.africansafariwildlifepark.com/

The Maritime Museum https://www.sanduskymaritime.org/information

8 Romantic Restaurants in Toledo

Every time she’d find a minute that’s the time that they begin it mom, mom, mommy!! Night and day it’s mommy, mommy make the dinner, fix the breakfast, wash the dishes, and do the shopping, and the sweeping and the carpooling. They always keep her hopping….she goes around in circle till she’s very, very dizzy still they holler keep a-busy Cinderelly mommy!  Even Cinderella managed to get a night off! Sure it involved a few mice friends and a Fairy Godmother….you’ve got Mom on the go in Holy Toledo & a few sitters on standby, together we can make this happen!   First things first, let’s choose a romantic restaurant and make reservations.

©️ Brim House

 

Brim House

Brim House introduces relaxed, yet refined dining to the Renaissance Hotel in the heart of Toledo.

We offer a seasonal menu of classic American cuisine with inventive twists. We partner up with local farmers and producers to bring the freshest and best of Toledo to this dining experience. Our culinary team balances flavors and textures, creating artistic presentations and incorporating international influences makes Brim House a destination for travelers as well as locals. (Source: https://brimhousetoledo.com/ )

 Address: 444 N Summit St, Toledo, OH 43604

Phone: (419) 243-7664

Hours: Dinner- Monday-Sunday 5–10PM

Website: https://brimhousetoledo.com/

Valet: Yes

©️Ciao Ristorante

Ciao! Ristorante

Ciao! Ristorante in Sylvania is a Mainstreet Ventures distinctive eatery.

Founded in 1992, Ciao! is a local favorite in the greater Toledo area, known for classic country Italian cuisine. Ciao! is a fragrant, informal & full of character Italian restaurant, featuring intriguing cuisine from every part of Italy, from the spicy red sauces of the south to the aromatic grilled dishes of Tuscany. They even use herbs from their very own herb garden! During the early part of spring through the end of summer, enjoy the beautiful outdoor patio.

Each week, they offer a creative weekly menu with a focus on seasonal, locally grown herbs and vegetables. Ciao! is an all scratch kitchen where everything is made from scratch, prepared fresh, daily. (source: http://ciaorestaurant.com/about-us/ )

Address: 6064 Monroe St, Sylvania, OH 43560

Phone: (419) 882-2334

Hours: Monday –Thursday 5-10PM, Friday 5-11PM, Saturday 4-11PM, Sunday 4-9PM

Website: http://ciaorestaurant.com/

©️ Element 112

Element 112

Element 112 is about creating a moment to remember – from the food, to the atmosphere, to the experience shared by you and your guests. They offer a small à la carte menu focusing on the highest quality ingredients. Dishes are inspired by international cuisines, Chef Nixon’s creative culinary whims, and seasonal produce.

Ingredients…..Humanely raised meats and fish without any GMO. Properly raised vegetables, fruits, and grains, of the highest quality. We hope that by supporting these people we can be a positive impact on the food system and the environment. Source: https://element112restaurant.com/about-us

Address: 5735 N, Main St, Sylvania, OH 43560

Phone: (419) 517-1104

Hours: Monday-Saturday 5-9PM, Closed Sunday

Website: https://element112restaurant.com/

©️ Georgio’s

 

Georgio’s Café International

Enjoy the very best, freshest seafood, succulent steaks, chops and delicious pasta dishes enhanced by the perfect bottle of wine. The intimate atmosphere conveys relaxed elegance, and our friendly and knowledgeable staff will ensure your complete satisfaction.    

Their philosophy is simple: every great meal requires the absolute best, freshest ingredients. There is no substitute for quality. From the very beginning in 1986, they’ve served only the finest local and organically grown produce, grass-fed prime beef, free range chicken and the freshest seafood delivered daily. Taste the difference. (Source: http://www.georgiostoledo.com/ )

Address: 426 N Superior St, Toledo, OH 43604

Phone: (419) 242-2424

Hours: Dinner- Friday-Saturday 5:30-10:30PM, Monday-Thursday 5:30-9:30PM, Closed Sunday

Website: http://www.georgiostoledo.com/

Valet: Yes

©️ Mancy’s Steakhouse

Mancy’s Steakhouse

Their steaks are aged and hand-cut on premise, seared at 1500 degrees and expertly prepared. They pair beautifully with our famous one-pound baked potatoes, French onion soup, chilled jumbo shrimp cocktail, or fresh asparagus with house-made hollandaise. Add your choice of more than 300 wines or 20 craft beers for a meal truly worth slowing down for.

Step into Mancy’s Steakhouse and the world slows down to meet you. Some say it’s the carved wood, brass, and stained glass—reclaimed from a time when craftsmanship was king. But most say it’s the steaks and chops—aged for 28 days using the same time-honored techniques our grandfather taught us. Source: https://mancys.com/steakhouse/

Address: 953 Phillips Ave, Toledo, OH 43612

Phone: (419) 476-4154

Hours: Dinner- Monday-Thursday 5-9:30PM, Friday 5-10PM, Saturday 4:30-10PM, Closed Sundays

Website: https://mancys.com/

©️ Registry Bistro

Registry Bistro

Registry is unique to the Toledo area. They serve the cuisine of our time that highlights our region’s bounty. They focus on small plates at reasonable prices which are comfortable for the entire table to share and entrees which maintain a midrange price point. Although traditional fine dining has fallen out of favor over the last decade, diners want a thoughtfully prepared, high quality dining experience minus the formality of an earlier era.

Registry exceeds those expectations. Source: https://www.registrybistro.com/about

Address: 144 N Superior St, Toledo, OH 43604

Phone: (419) 725-0444

Hours: Tuesday –Friday 4-9:30PM, Saturday 4-10PM, Closed Sunday & Monday

Website: https://www.registrybistro.com/

Valet: Friday & Saturdays

©️ Rockwell’s Steakhouse

Rockwell’s Steakhouse

Rockwell’s Steakhouse & Lounge is our upscale steak house featuring the finest cuts of prime aged USDA meats, fresh seafood, and more. The Rockwell’s experience focuses on providing superior service and cuisine in a truly impressive setting. At Rockwell’s Lounge, relax with your favorite drink and enjoy the view and full menu option from Rockwell’s in casual style. (Source: https://mbaybrew.com/rockwells/ )

Address: 27 Broadway St, Toledo, OH 43604

Phone: (419) 243-1302

Hours: Monday-Saturday 5-10PM, Closed Sunday

Website: https://mbaybrew.com/rockwells/

 
©️ Rosie’s Italian Grille

Rosie’s Italian Grille

Traditional Italian Since 1982

Rosie’s Italian Grille offers an array of traditional Italian dishes, fresh catch seafood from the Florida Keys, Chicago Stockyard steaks, lamb chops, and more! (Source: https://www.rosiesitaliangrille.com/ )

Address: 606 N McCord Rd, Toledo, OH 43615

Phone: (419) 866-5007

Hours: Monday-Friday 11:30AM-9PM, Friday & Saturday 11:30AM-10:30PM, Closed Sunday

Website: https://www.rosiesitaliangrille.com/

Now all that’s left to do is call that sitter, take that little black dress out of moth balls, get dolled up girl, & ya might wanna let Prince Charming in on the plans…better yet, share this with him now.

Enjoy your romantic evening out, loves!!

 

Did your favorite romantic hot spot not make the list? Please share in the comments.

Planning a Party, Toledo? Start HERE!

This girl is on fire! Gabrielle Wilson, wife, mother, owner & event coordinator of Social Events Co. did it again! She blew us all always with her Pop-Up Party this past Sunday at Handmade Toledo, Bestie Bash!!! I had the pleasure of attending this epic event with my youngest and two of her besties.

As we walked into Handmade Toledo we were greeted by the thumping of the base from the DJ jamming in the back, instantly the kiddos let out a screech & ran.  Picture it, a sea of yellow, pink, gold, confetti sprawled on the floor and lots of cozy spaces for conversation, the venue was clearly spot-on for this event.

 

First stop, cupcake bar, duh! Lol! There was legit every kind of cupcake flavor you could imagine, chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, etc. Tons of sprinkles…heart shaped, regular, etc.

Then we hit-up the bar, the lemonade bar 😉

Last stop, the massive Snack Station….no one left hungry!

After all that good grub the kiddos managed to work up enough courage to get up on stage & sing some karaoke…..

Last, but certainly not least, Photo-Booths! I like the fact that there were plenty of backdrops for photo ops! I know my kiddos tend to linger a bit longer in this area.

We’re totally spoiled, this was the second Pop-Up Party we attended by Social Events Co. Click here to see pics & deets for Pancakes with Santa 

Gabrielle knows good parties…she knows what to look for in the venue, the type of food to serve, activities that are appropriate for those attending the party, décor, etc. That’s why if you are planning a birthday party, bridal shower, baby shower, graduation party, bachelorette party, etc. in Toledo or the surrounding area a phone call to her needs to be your first step. She will make the process a smooth one. She can provide everything you need & tailor your event, party, etc. specifically to your needs.

Social Events Co.

Phone: 419-392-3569

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Social-Events-Co-2016376978669820/

Menu of Services that Social Events Co offers:

-Mobile Bartending Services

-Event Planning- no party is too big or too small

-Linen and Backdrop Rental

-Coffee, Hot Chocolate, Dessert Bars-Customize the perfect bar for your next event. Perfect for Wedding favors, Office parties, Holiday parties, Graduations, or any event!

-Balloon Garland-Choose the color and size and we will create a balloon arch that will make your event POP!

-Pop Up Parties- Be on the lookout for our Pop Up parties!

 

DON”T MISS OUT!!! Go to Social Event Co. Facebook page now & give it a like so you don’t miss out on her next awesome Pop-Up party!! Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Social-Events-Co-2016376978669820/

 

DRUM TAO Win Family Four-Pack Tickets

This looks amazing! My kiddos are super excited for this one!

TAO’s modern, high-energy performances showcasing the ancient art of Japanese drumming have transfixed audiences worldwide. Combining highly physical, large-scale drumming with contemporary costumes, precise choreography, and innovative visuals, the performers of Drum TAO 2020 create an energetic and unforgettable production for the entire family!

WHERE:

Stranahan Theater, 4645 Heatherdowns Blvd, Toledo, OH, 43614

SHOW DATE & TIME:

March 7th @ 8pm

TICKET INFO:

For information and to purchase tickets: https://bit.ly/37qFEHE

CONTEST:

Enter to win DRUM TAO Family 4-pack tickets for March 7th @ 8pm

HOW TO ENTER:

1-Share this post on Facebook

2- Comment with the answer to the following question: Would you, or have you ever, let your children have a drum set in your house?

Winner will be randomly selected February 27th

Share, tag friends, & best of luck, loves!

 

Sledding Hills Guide for Toledo & Surrounding Area

Flat! That’s the one word that best describes the terrain in NW Ohio & Southeast Michigan, which is totally fine unless it snows & kiddos want to go sledding. In which case kids have two options, one, gather all the neighborhood kids and have a BYOS (Bring Your Own Snow) party in the front yard, where kids literally gather as much snow from all the yards to make a snow hill, or, hit up a snow hill. But let’s be honest, if you’re not a local these hills are tough to find. So here’s a list of some popular snow hills the locals in NW Ohio & SE Michigan frequent with their kiddos…

Blue Creek Metropark

Address: 7215 Providence St, Whitehouse, OH 43571

Phone: (419) 877-5383

Website: https://metroparkstoledo.com/explore-your-parks/blue-creek/

Conneaut Park Bowling Green, Ohio

Address: Conneaut & Haskins Road

Site of the old water wells and reservoir system that supplied drinking water for the City, the sledding hill offers a great place to spend those snowy winter days.

Phone: 419-354-6223

Website: https://www.bgohio.org/departments/parks-and-recreation/parks/conneaut-park-sledding-hill/

Gerber Park Blissfield, MI

Address: 14360 Carroll Rd, Blissfield, MI 49228

Website: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Gerber-Hill-Park/105645512949108

Homecoming Park Wauseon

Located on the northwest corner of Wauseon, the Homecoming Park sits between West Leggett Street and Lawrence Avenue. Access to the park and parking is available from both streets. The park offers a sledding hill, walking path, restrooms, playground, gazebo and 2 open air pavilions.

Address: 715 Lawrence Ave, Wauseon, OH 43567

Website: https://www.wauseondowntownassociation.org/wauseon-parks–recreation

Maumee Bay state Park

Address: 1400 State Park Rd, Oregon, OH 43616

Phone: (419) 836-7758

Website: http://parks.ohiodnr.gov/maumeebay

 

Northview High School Hill

Address: 5403 Silica Dr, Sylvania, OH 43560

Phone: (419) 824-8570

Website: http://www.sylvaniaschools.org/northviewhighschool_home.aspx

 

Ottawa Park

Address: Ottawa Pkwy, Toledo, OH 43606

Phone: (419) 245-2875

Website: http://www.ottawapark.org/

Pine Glen Park

Address: 3145-3195 Wynnewood Dr, Toledo, OH 43613

Phone: (419) 936-2875

Website: https://toledo.oh.gov/services/public-service/parks-recreation-forestry/parks/

Pearson Park

Lights also allow for nighttime sledding on the sledding hill. The hill is next to Parking Lot 1, just across from the lake, where you can skate under lights when the ice is safe.

Address: 761 S Lallendorf Rd, Oregon, OH 43616

Phone: (419) 360-9178

Website: https://metroparkstoledo.com/explore-your-parks/pearson/

Side Cut Metropark

The Wagener Sledding Hill is located at the Silver Lake area at Side Cut in Maumee. The addition of lights allows the fun to continue after dark.

Address: 1025 W River Rd, Maumee, OH 43537

Phone: (419) 360-9187

Website: https://metroparkstoledo.com/explore-your-parks/side-cut/

Sylvania Prairie Park (Brint between Centennial and Mitchaw )

Sylvan Prairie Park offers a new and improved sledding hill with three different slopes. The sledding hill is available during open hours and when weather conditions permit.

Address: 8601 Brint Rd, Sylvania, OH 43560

Phone: (419) 882-8313

Website: https://www.olanderpark.com/olanderpark/sylvan-prairie-park/

Woodville by the Library

(If you now the address for this one or nearest crossroads please comment below)

Water Treatment, Hill behind it in Blissfield

(If you now the address for this one or nearest crossroads please comment below)

Did your favorite make the list? If not please share in the comments below!