I have always felt that Cleveland has had a lack of indoor playgrounds. Yes, we have bounce-house places like the Jump Yard and Pump it Up. We have the trampoline parks, like Skyzone and Get Air. Which is great, because, lets face it: our kids love to bounce. We have arcades, like Dave & Busters and Chuck E Cheese. We have no shortage of indoor “entertainment center/ amusement park” type of places, like Fun & Stuff, Swings & Things, Make Believe and Scene 75; where energy runs high and you have your pick of exciting activities like bumper cars, laser tag and bowling. And don’t get me wrong: I love all of these, but none are a playground. And my daughter really misses playgrounds for those 4 to 6 months out of the year that they are inaccessible due to weather.
I’m happy to report that in the past year or two, Cleveland has really stepped up its playground game. The new Children’s Museum of Cleveland (5 stars by the way; it’s amazing) definitely fits the bill, as it has an incredibly huge climbing structure, among other fun exhibits. I hope to soon make a visit to Café O Play, KidsPlay and PlayDay Café and see how they compare. We even liked Amazone in Medina, and will be back at some point.
But today… today I’m talking about the brand new — and very impressive — Little Explorers in North Olmsted. It’s a huge indoor playground located inside of Great Northern Mall (in the Sears Wing) with a variety of fun activities to suit a wide range of abilities. From babies to school-agers, there’s something for everyone. Here are some of the details:
My favorite part: They are open the same hours as the mall! (which is 9 p.m. on weekdays), so even working moms can have a place to take their little ones in the evenings.
Very bright, clean and modern
No shoes allowed
Parents must stay
Birthday parties available
Crafts and entertainment during the week
Membership passes available
Small store with educational toys for sale
Benches for parents to sit
Employees can be seen sanitizing toys
And a quick look at some of the activities – in the few hours we spent there, we didn’t get to everything:
- Huge sandbox
- Chalk wall
- Climbing structure
- Swingset with slide
- Several small “pretend-play” rooms (kitchen, dress-up, etc)
- Mini stage with piano and microphone
- Separate gated baby play area
- Toddler play area
- Ride on toys, scooters, and balance bikes
- Ball pit
We had a great time, and can’t wait to come back! Highly recommended. Be prepared to spend a few hours here.
There is an upcoming Grand Opening event and New Year’s Noon Party on December 31. You must call Little Explorers at 440-641-1515 to RSVP before Friday, December 29 at 3 p.m.