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Spring into family fun: Must-try activities for the entire family

Spring is finally in the air. After a long winter filled with snowstorms and a few polar vortexes, it’s time to get the kids up and moving.

Luckily, there are plenty of fun things to do in and around Milwaukee that can help burn off a little cooped-up winter energy.

Here’s our list of the top outdoor activities that will make for a great day of family fun.

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The Grow It, Eat It class at Boerner Botanical Gardens.

1. Prairieville Park: Attractions here include an 18-hole, adventure style miniature golf course, batting cages and bumper cars. For an after-golf treat, there’s a great snack bar featuring Wisconsin-made Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream.

Prairieville Park, 2507 Plaza Court, Waukesha, is already open but is weather-dependent – call ahead if the weather seems iffy.

2. Milwaukee County Zoo: While this is always a great family outing, spring weather makes it a great time to get outside and enjoy the day, and there are a couple of events coming up worth noting.

3. Wehr Nature Center: The center encompasses 220 acres within Whitnall Park in southwestern Milwaukee County. And, it’s actually the only nature center located in the southern half of the county.

There are more than 5 miles of trails worth exploring, and you can see wildlife and nature at its best. Maybe, if you’re lucky, you’ll be able to catch a glimpse of some animals too.

The Brookfield Jaycees Skate Park opens in May in Milwaukee's western suburbs.

The Brookfield Jaycees Skate Park opens in May in Milwaukee’s western suburbs.

4. Brookfield Jaycees Skate Park: This is an outdoor roller-blade skate park. It’s open from 9 a.m. to dusk daily at 2585 Pilgrim Road, Brookfield. This is a great activity for families who skateboard or in-line skate (or want to at least attempt one of them.)

The facility features pyramids, ramps, spines, transitions and a fun box. Just a heads up to parents, there is no supervision (other than parents who decide to come watch or participate) provided at the skate park.

5. Kettle Moraine Ranch: Known for horseback riding, hayrides and great riding trails that wind through scenic woods, rocky glacial deposits and into cool valleys, this is a great way to get the family out and soak up what nature has to offer.

Children need to be at least 8 years old to ride, and it’s reservations only, so make sure to call ahead.

Ready to hit the trails? You can find Kettle Moraine Ranch at W379 S9674 CR-S in Eagle.

What better way to enjoy the outdoors then by soaking up the sun on a paddleboat or radio-controlled sailboat? It gives you a great chance to stay in the city, yet still feel like you’re out of town on a mini-vacation. Weather-permitting, Juneau Park is open mid-May from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

Juneau Park in downtown Milwaukee is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

6. Juneau Park on Paddleboats: What better way to enjoy the outdoors then by soaking up the sun on a paddleboat or radio-controlled sailboat? It gives you a great chance to stay in the city, yet still feel like you’re out of town on a mini-vacation.

Weather-permitting, Juneau Park is open mid-May from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.

7. Havenwoods State Forest: There are plenty of great trails at Havenswood that are perfect for burning off a little of that winter energy. Peak your children’s interest with the Become a Wisconsin Explorer program.

8. Lynden Sculpture Garden: Art meets outdoors here, making it a perfect place for the entire family. There are 50 sculptures that sit across 40 acres of parks, lakes and woodlands, and the unique sculptures are definitely enough to keep the kids entertained.

Lynden Sculpture Garden, 2145 West Brown Deer Road, Milwaukee, also has a lot of classes geared toward kids, such as Weekly Art Drop-In; Family Workshop: Drawn with Nature; and Tuesdays in the Garden: A Monthly Outing for Parents & Very Small Children.

9. Hank Aaron State Trail: These beautiful trails are great any day of the year.

About Kirsten Yovino

Kirsten Yovino is a Milwaukee-area resident and co-owner of brewcityparent.com.

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