By KATHERINE COGGESHALL
As the new mom on the block—still within my first year of living in Los Alamos with kids—I’m learning the ropes and sharing the information with you as I unearth it. Currently, I’m asking myself: What indoor activities are available for kids in Los Alamos?
There is a myriad of reasons for seeking indoor activities: rain (if we’re lucky), wind and the seasonal allergies it brings, heat, too much UV exposure, or the natural corralling of children that an indoor place offers as compared to outdoor (toddler moms hear me loud and clear).
What does Los Alamos offer in the way of indoor play? Here is what I’ve discovered so far:
- Bradbury Science Museum: It’s free, hands on, and fun. They even have a small section in the back dedicated to kids that is equipped with blocks and gears.
- Family Strengths Network: This is a hidden gem in Los Alamos. It offers free indoor play, parent resources, and a toy-lending library.
- Mesa Public Library: There are branches in White Rock and Los Alamos, both of which have children’s areas. Toys, books, coloring, story time, and more are offered.
- The PEEC Nature Center: Between the planetarium and free indoor play area with puppets, this is my favorite kid-friendly spot in Los Alamos.
- Smiths: Yes, I do mean the grocery store. They have soft-serve ice cream and aisles of toys. When you just need to get the kids out of the house, this is an ideal indoor destination.
- The Aquatic Center: You can purchase a punch card if you go infrequently and it never expires. They offer a warm therapy pool, a large regular pool, and free use of life vests.
- The Animal Shelter: It’s free, it’s indoors, and kids love it. Just don’t leave your kids unattended.
- CB FOX Kids: Another great toy spot, this store offers some high-end and educational items for kids.
- Pet Pangea: If you have a pet or just want to watch the turtles swim in the tank, this store is a fun experience for little ones.
- Family Game Night: This well-kept secret is a meetup group that takes place in the conference room above Starbucks at Smiths. It’s free and open to the community.
- YMCA: The Y has a lot for kids. If you are a member, you can enjoy rock climbing, the open basketball court, and free child care (while you work out; resist the temptation to bolt to Starbucks).
- Activity Center: If your kids are in the third grade or higher, they can hang out at the activity center for free. There are branches in White Rock and Los Alamos.
- Reel Deal Theater: This is a fun and reliable indoor activity that most kids enjoy. They even offer free movies for kids in the summer.
- County Open Gym Programs: The county offers free open gym time to anyone over the age of 10 and to kids under the age of 10 who genuinely participate in the sport. Times and locations can be found on the county website. This includes indoor soccer, table tennis, volleyball, basketball, and badminton.
Did I miss something? Let’s keep this list growing. Add a comment on Facebook or email the Los Alamos Daily Post.