I’ve made it almost a month into parenthood! Save for an outing to Washington Park and several walks in the neighborhood (okay, and doctors appointments), we are still mostly pretty confined to the walls of our home. (No, I don’t care to “walk around Target” where I will inevitably spend $100 for no good reason.) I have been eyeing the weather waiting for consistent 50º+ days and have even already preemptively secured a zoo membership for when those days get here. (Winter, I don’t mind you, but it’s getting to the point where I’m over you.)
I am really looking forward to not only exploring Cincinnati with Little Lady, but—even more so—seeing this great city through her eyes and with activities that are kid friendly (which will be mostly pretty new to me). I’ve been taking mental notes of places and things that sound like a lot of fun, so I decided to make a shortlist of activities that I’m most excited to share with her, even as an infant and growing into toddlerhood:
American Sign Museum
No matter their age, children love all the lights and movement at the Sign Museum—even from the stroller.
Cost: Up to three children under 12 are free with each paying adult ($15 admission).
At 80,000 square feet, EnterTRAINment Junction is the world’s largest indoor train display, featuring a play area, railroading museum, and other seasonal and special events.
Cost: $9.95–$13.95 Additional ticketing information can be found here and specials can be found here.
Pre and postnatal fitness program featuring stroller strides, stroller barre, and more! A great way to get out of the house while on maternity leave, especially.
Cost: Prices vary, but the first class is free. Visit the website for more information.
Helps “children and their parents share creative bonding experiences through art.” Features Happen’s Toy Lab, Community Gardens, Teen Hall, Community Canvas, and more!
Cost: Visit their website for more information.
Designed to encourage exploration, this 12-acre discovery garden features the 25-foot Discovery Tree as well as seven smaller gardens, and even plays host to children’s birthday parties and education programs.
Cost: Daily admission is $5 per person, while children under 2 are free.
Madcap Puppets features theatre productions throughout the year, while the Education Center hosts workshops, residencies, and summer camps.
Cost: Information for tickets to productions and for classes can be found here.
The Red Balloon Café + Play
Offers classes, playroom and café, space for parties and events, and more.
Cost: Prices for classes, parties, and events vary.
Interactive “edutainment” play space with water, animals, sand, and all types of open-ended play and chances to manipulate and create through exploration, discovery, imagination.
Cost: $8.95 for ages 1+, free for adults. Click here for additional pricing information.
The UnMuseum at the Contemporary Arts Center
Central Business District
The UnMuseum is located on the sixth floor of the CAC and features a gallery of interactive art and hands-on art projects, where children can share an enjoyable art experience with parents and caregivers.
West Fork Park Playland
This inclusive playground is accessible and usable by children of all ages and abilities, and includes eight play zones, from spaces for sensory, a zipline, mega tower, and more!
Westwood Town Hall Park
The renovated Town Hall grounds will include a new playground, plaza and community space, plus a dog park, and is expected to be finished this spring. A great neighborhood option the entire family can enjoy (including the dog) a short walk from home? Yes, please!
And, of course, there are always the standard places to take advantage of, too! As I previously mentioned, there’s the Cincinnati Zoo. There is also the Duke Energy Children’s Museum, Kings Island, Newport Aquarium, and Smale Riverfront Park.
So if you’re ever in the market to get a tiny loved one in your life a gift, give the gift of wonder to any of the above experiences. I promise that gift will be more valuable than whatever disposable toy you were otherwise considering.