Exploring OKC with Children - MetroFamily Magazine
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Exploring OKC with Children

by Jennifer Geary

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

One of my favorite things about Oklahoma City is that there's always something to do. It doesn't matter how old you are, what hobbies you're interested in or what part of the city you live in, there is always some place to visit or an event to attend.  The only difficulty comes in narrowing down your choices. To help make it a little easier for you to decide how to spend some of those last days of summer close to home, here are some great venues around town that are fun for the whole family, some of which also included on MetroFamily's Kids Pass.

National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum is not just an art museum; it's also a hands-on learning experience. After viewing the fine artwork, head out to the Children's Cowboy Corral, an entire building dedicated to interactive displays to help kids learn about life in the west, or walk through Prosperity Junction, a replica of a turn-of-the-century cattle town complete with a railroad depot and livery stable.

Science Museum Oklahoma is another venue that's all about hands-on learning. Kids (and adults) of all ages are free to experiment with the different interactive exhibits to increase their understanding of a variety of scientific concepts.  It's easy to spend most of the day here, so budget your time accordingly if you want to see the entire museum in one visit! One museum must-do is the new family exhibition called CurioCity which boost 20,000-square-feet of whimsical fun in a world of the wonders of science.

The Gaylord-Pickens Oklahoma Museum reveals Oklahoma's history through its people, both the famous ones we've all heard about and the everyday ones like you and me.  High-tech touch screens allow visitors to choose what they'll focus on as they listen to the stories of people like Reba McEntire and Wiley Post. Enjoy a story and a craft on the third Thursday each month, when admission is only $3! Children 5 and under always are free.

The Oklahoma History Center covers almost every aspect of Oklahoma history there is.  Even lifelong Oklahomans will be amazed at the depth of the exhibits and are sure to come away having learned something new about our state. There are indoor and outdoor exhibits and plenty of hands-on opportunities to keep even the youngest visitors engaged.

The Oklahoma City Museum of Art has a large permanent collection of European and American art, but it may be best known for having the most comprehensive collection of Dale Chihuly glass in the world. Chihuly's bright colors and twirling shapes will catch the eye of children and adults alike, and after your visit you can try making your own Chihuly-inspired art at home. From now until Sept. 27, your family can explore a collection of Peter Carl Fabergé. A jeweler to the Tsars, the extensive collection features more than 230 rare and storied treasures created by the House of Fabergé.

The terrible events of April 19, 1995 and the resilience our state showed in the aftermath are chronicled in the exhibits of the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum. Visitors can take a self-guided chronological tour through the exhibits and spend time in the peaceful outdoor memorial. Download the Museum’s app which offers videos and audio tours for both the outdoor memorial and the museum. There is also a special area for children which was designed to teach them about the impact of violence.

If you're looking for fun on the water, head to RIVERSPORT Adventures, where you can kayak, dragon boat, cycle and more. If you're feeling really adventurous, try the 700-foot SandRidge Sky Zip or the Sky Trail adventure course.  Visitors can purchase an all day pass that allows them to explore all of the different features, or if your time is limited, choose a single hour experience.

America's only skeleton museum had its first location right here in Oklahoma City. The Museum of Osteology has over 300 skeletons on display. The Explorer's Corner even allows visitors the chance to get up close and personal with real bones and test their knowledge of North American animals. Do you think you can identify the mystery skull?

Andy Alligator's Fun Park &Water Park should be at the top of your list for simple family fun. The Fun Park has batting cages, blaster boats, mini-golf, and go-carts and visitors can get an Unlimited Fun Pass to make the excitement last for hours. The Water Park is one of the metro's newest and has slides, a lazy river, and special areas for the younger swimmers. Be sure to check out their daily specials, too!

The Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History takes visitors back to prehistoric Oklahoma, more than 300 million years ago. There are fossils and artifacts from around the state on display along with many interactive exhibits. If you have younger kids, make sure you stop by the Discovery Room for more hands-on fun.

With the help of your MetroFamily Kids Pass, you'll be able to have some fun around town and still have plenty money left for more adventures.

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