Can you believe spring break is already upon us next week. Not sure how to occupy the kids? Spring break is a much-needed time from the ordinary rush of school and homework for kids. For parents, however, it can either mean a great vacation to a fun spot, or a week of frantically trying to find something for the kids to do. If your spring break falls into the latter category, this is for you.
So, what are some ways to keep your kids busy? Resist the temptation to stay at home and get out and enjoy some fun family activities. Here are a few ideas that will make everyone happy, from the bookworms to the bundles of energy.
#10. Hit the library
All year long, kids have to read school-assigned books. Over spring break, let them read whatever they want. Take them to the library and let them choose a book or books to entertain them while they are off from school. A few Sonoma County Library highlights for next week that aren’t too far from Sonoma are:
- Rincon Valley-Bay Area Wild, Tuesday at 11:00am
- Petaluma-Uncle Jer’s Traveling Bee Show, Wednesday at 3:00
- Petaluma-Paper Airplne Day, Thursday at 10:30
- Rohnert Park-Lego Club, Friday at 4:00
- Rohnert Park-Extraordinary Eggs, Saturday at 11:00
We have been to Petaluma, Rincon Valley and Rohnert Park Libraries and they all have wonderful children sections! Or stop by the Sonoma Valley Library for Thursday storytime- 10:30 for toddlers and 11:30 for preschoolers. All Free of course!
#9. Go on a picnic
Cornerstone Gardens is a local gem that is worthy of at least one spring break visit. Where else can you let the kids run through a large water pipe, a huge border of daisy pinwheels and sit in a giant adirondack chair? Bring a picnic and enjoy the several different landscapes. Gardens are open daily from 10:00-4:00pm and are always free.
#8. Hit a Farmers Market!
We are so fortunate in Sonoma County that we can find a Farmer’s Market almost any day of the week. Take advantage of a market just a little over 30 minutes away in neighboring towns like Santa Rosa and Marin. They always have something new to try this time of year. Or go to the yearly Friday market we have right here in town. Either way, you can’t go wrong.
Sonoma Valley Friday Farmers’ Market; Local flowers, seafood, cheese, baked goods and vegetables.
Year ’round Farmers’ Market at Depot Parking Lot @ First Street West Sonoma; 9 a.m. – 1:00 p.m every Friday. Phone Number: (707) 538.7023
Marin Civic Center Farmer’s Market; A wide variety of offerings from cheese to meats to seafood to fresh produce to handcrafted items. Vendors are friendly, providing great samples for the asking. Live music is a bonus too. Bring a reusable, large shopping bag, since you’ll most likely fill it up!
Year ‘round Thursday and Sunday 8:00-1:00pm
Original Santa Rosa Farmer’s Market; You’ll find food and cooking products, fresh seafood, baked goods, cheese, honey, flowers, plants, and arts & crafts all from local farmers and artisans.
Santa Rosa Veteran’s Building East Parking Lot, 1351 Maple Avenue, Santa Rosa
Wednesday 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m and Saturday 8:30-1:00 Phone Number: (707) 538.7023
Petaluma East Side Farmers’ Market on Tuesdays
Locally grown agricultural products, locally made hot and packaged foods as well as arts and crafts; 10am to 1:30pm at Lucchesi Park/ Community Center parking lot. (415) 999-5635
Also, here’s a list of all the farmers market’s in Sonoma County.
#7. Have an Art Show
Do your kids love to draw, paint and create? Then plan a spring break art show. Give your kids all the supplies they need to make collages, paintings or sculptures and set them to work. At the end of the week, invite friends and family over to view their creations. You can find canvases and art supplies at Fine Line Art Supply. My daughter also wants to make bookmarks and sell them at the art show. She is giving all the proceeds to Pets Lifeline. Turn it into a “fun”draiser! The Sonoma Valley Museum of Art is also Free on Wednesday’s and will offer some worthy inspiration!
#6. Start a Spring Garden
Don’t be tempted with the wonderful weather we have been having to start planting tomatoes, but it’s certainly warm enough to plant spring vegetables such as carrots, lettuce and radish. Start lettuce in a take-out box (Red Grape’s Restaurant containers are perfect!) You will have sprouts and lettuce in a matter of weeks. Also spring break is also a great time to plan your summer garden. Have the kids help by plotting this year’s garden on paper, making lists of supplies you need (compost, mulch, seeds, plants, etc.) and picking the vegetables you want to plant. A seed catalog will amaze them! We love making a trip to Sonoma Mission Gardens to visit the birds, goats and pick up spring vegetable starts.
#5. Inside Fun
In Fairfield, only 25 minutes from Sonoma is one of our new favorite indoor play spots, Jump Highway. The trampolines are lined up wall to wall. There is also a dodgeball area, basketball court and huge foam bins to bounce into. An hour of jump time can really be a lot of fun! Also in Napa you can find indoor rock climbing at Rockzilla. Pack up some snacks and head over the hill. You are sure to exhaust the kids!
#4. Play 18 Holes
Maxwell Fun Center is offering $1.00 Dollar Golf Day per person/per round every Tuesday in March! What an awesome deal! Play 18 holes and then head inside to overdose on skee-ball and video games. They even have a snack bar and ice cream. Open at 11:00 each day during spring break week.
#3. Think Retro
Slap on a pair of roller skates and cruise. Cal Skate is about 25 minutes from Sonoma and is offering Spring Break sessions Monday thru Friday. Afternoon sessions are $5.00 from 2:00-4:00!
#2. Go on an Ice Cream Tasting Adventure
I know this may sound crazy, but how fun would it be to your kids! Try all of Sonoma Valley’s ice cream spots and decide who has the best ice cream! Michoacana, Ben & Jerry’s, Chocolate Cow, Baskin-Robbins and Sonoma’s Best all have amazing flavors! I highly recommend Strawberry Cheesecake at Michoacana!
Let me know which one wins first place! Just be sure to leave some time on the way home to stop at a park and let the kids run off some energy!
#1. See all 21 Missions without leaving Sonoma
Want to see the entire Mission Trail under one roof and for free? Head to Cline Winery (also one of my favorite kid-friendly wineries) and take a tour of all 21 Mission Models that were shown at the World’s Fair on Treasure Island in 1939. Open 10:00-4:00pm everyday. FREE. While you’re there, be sure to take a tour of the entire Cline property stopping along the way to find the resident turtles, carp and birds. Grab a picnic and enjoy! Details on the Mission Museum here and Cline Cellars details here.
So whether you decide to try just one or even challenge yourself to make this your spring break check off list, just get outside and have fun with your kids. What do you have planned for spring break? I would love to know!
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