Kid-Friendly Ideas Beyond Bucks County for Your Summer Bucket List


We’re halfway through summer and if you’re a parent of young children, you’ve probably spent the past few weeks finding all the possible ways to entertain your little ones.

Whether your goal is to make fun memories – or just wear them down to sleep, so you can watch something other than “Bluey” – you’ve worked the extra hours to give your family a memorable summer. .

By this point, you’ve probably had a chance to visit many of Bucks County’s popular family attractions. There’s the Bucks County Children’s Museum, Peddler’s Village, Sesame Place, Shady Brook Farm, Hellerick’s Farm, Mr. B’s Coffeehouse, Sky Zone Trampoline Park, Churchville Nature Center, free events offered at branches of the Bucks County Free Library, and dozens of community playgrounds, just to name a few.

You might even have explored some local hidden gems, like Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve or the historic Van Sant Airfield.

Summer fun:Fancy a summer getaway near you? Check Out These Hidden Bucks County Gems

Some days were big wins: your kids had fun playing, you managed to take the perfect shot, and you ended up with ice cream for everyone. And maybe other days didn’t go as planned. Your toddler hid the car keys, you forgot to pack extra nappies, and you drove half an hour to a spray park just to find out it was closed for maintenance.

Anyway, parents, you did a great job. Congratulations on getting this far.

But now you might be looking for a change of scenery and want to venture a little further afield. So to help you out, we’ve found five unique places within a short drive of Bucks County to complete your bucket list this summer.

Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse, Philadelphia

Founded in 1899, this 6.5 acre free play area and 16,000 square foot playhouse offers plenty of space for imaginative, unstructured free play with over 50 state-of-the-art play equipment designed for kids from 10 and under and a Tot-Lot for children 5 and under.

The Playhouse, which underwent a complete renovation and reopened to the public on January 8, 2022, is a three-story brick and masonry structure offering a variety of play opportunities from horseback riding to tricycles including the staging of a puppet show.

The performance hall at the Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse in Philadelphia is a three-story brick and masonry structure offering a variety of play opportunities, from tricycles to tumbling to putting on a puppet show.

Don’t miss the Ann Newman Giant Wooden Slide, one of Smith’s original playground equipment built in 1905. At 13 feet wide and 39 feet long, even mom and dad will want to take a ride.

Check their website for special events held throughout the year, including Kidchella, a children’s music festival with upcoming concerts on July 22 and August 19. Tickets for Kidchella are $12 per person and can be purchased online.

Please note, no pets are allowed in the play area or game room with the exception of service animals.

Go: Smith Memorial Playground and Playhouse is located at 3500 East Reservoir Drive in East Fairmount Park in Philadelphia; 215-765-4325; smithplayground.org

Howell Living History Farm, Hopewell NJ

Take a trip just across the river to Mercer County and see history come to life at this centuries-old working farm, where visitors can tour the grounds and participate in hands-on activities that allow you , for you and your family to go back in time to appreciate the tradition. agricultural methods dating back to the 18th century.

Each week focuses on a particular seasonal farming activity, such as shearing sheep, harvesting wheat, blacksmithing, or making cider. It’s more than just a reenactment; you will be able to observe real farmers at work and even have the chance to help, as they plant and harvest, tend to animals, build fences, raise barns, cook and take care of household chores.

Howell Living History Farm features remnants of early 1900s farming.

Check their website for a full schedule, plus additional program offerings like children’s storytimes, nature walks, and preschool Fridays.

Go: Howell Living History Farm is located at 70 Woodens Ln. in Hopewell, NJ; 609-737-3299; howellfarm.org

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Sky Cafe at Sky Manor Airport, Pittstown NJ

Grab a table at the Sky Café at Sky Manor Airport in Pittstown, New Jersey, and enjoy up-close views of planes, helicopters, and hot air balloons while you and your family eat breakfast or lunch together .

If your little one is obsessed with airplanes or you think you have a future pilot on your hands, then you’ll want to head to the Sky Café, where you can have breakfast or lunch while admiring planes, helicopters and hot air balloons. at Sky Manor Airport.

With a menu that goes beyond the basics, with items like their Bacon Stuffed French Toast, Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken Sandwich, and Mac and Cheese Burger, you won’t leave hungry. Their kids’ menu features kid-favorite dishes to satisfy even your pickiest eater. And for those who really want to get in the mood, try one of their aptly named dishes like the aviator skillet or the black hawk omelette.

Be sure to keep an eye out for special events, like free plane rides, hosted by Sky Manor Airport.

Indoor and outdoor seating is available. And they are open every day except Tuesday.

Go: The Sky Manor Airport Sky Café is located at 48 Sky Manor Rd. in Pittstown, NJ; 908-996-3442; skymanorairport.com/sky-cafe

Philadelphia Museum of Illusions, Philadelphia

The Philadelphia Museum of Illusions, which opened in March, offers a visual, sensory, and educational experience featuring optical illusions, stereograms, and holograms in its immersive rooms and more than 60 exhibits.

Take a trip to Old Town and visit the Philadelphia Museum of Illusions, which just opened in March, for a visual, sensory and educational experience featuring optical illusions, stereograms and holograms in specially immersive rooms designed and more than 60 exhibits.

It’s a great place to take that perfect selfie and have fun while learning exactly how these mind-bending illusions work to trick your mind.

Ticket prices vary and can be purchased online or at the door. Family packages and group rates are also available.

Go: The Philadelphia Museum of Illusions is located at 401 Market St. in Philadelphia; 267-703-2270;moiphilly.com

Superior Gaming Systems, Norristown

Even if you’ve never heard of Superior Play Systems, you’ve probably seen their products in dozens of backyards. You know, those cedar playsets with slides, a few swings, and maybe even monkey bars or a rock climbing wall.

At select locations, Superior Play showrooms also double as paid indoor playgrounds where you can purchase an all-day pass for as little as $10, allowing your kids to play, swing , slide, climb and jump as they please on a variety of play equipment, trampolines and basketball hoops.

It’s a great alternative for rainy days or if you just want to escape the heat. Keep in mind that while they have stores in Bucks County, their closest paid indoor playground is in Norristown.

Go: Superior Play Systems is located at 2554 Industry Ln. in Norristown; 610-200-6799; superiorplay.com/parties-play/superplaytime/

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