What do you do when it’s a million degrees outside and your kids are chomping at the bit for a little activity? Living in the Seattle area I’ve mastered the art of turning a day at the mall into a low cost adventure to get out of the rain. The same concept can be applied when the heat is unbearable. That doesn’t seem to be a problem around here but now that it’s summer and temps are rising around the country, I know many of you are looking for places to retreat with the comfort of an air conditioner. Most malls have a children’s play area making it the perfect alternative to the playground when the heat is unbearable. What do you do though, when the kids tire of the play area but you aren’t ready to reunite with the wall of heat waiting for you on the other side? Here are a few low cost ideas:
- Don’t walk– Instead of just walking around the mall, have your child do bunny hops, skip, gallop, tip-toe and any other creative way of moving that you can think of. They’ll get out the wiggles and you’ll keep your sanity. Just make sure to respect other shoppers and try to stick to areas that aren’t crowded.
- Throw pennies in the fountain– Many malls have “wishing” fountains. Have your kids wish on pennies as they toss them in.
- Grab a snack– Most malls have pretzel shops. Many feature a Pretzel of the Day for only $1. Once the kids have refueled, the might be ready to hit the play area again for another round.
- Use a voucher– If you plan ahead you might be able find a deal on a Build a Bear Workshop or paint-your-own pottery store for a creative activity at the mall.
- Rent a stroller– This may seem a little silly but those car shaped strollers for rent intrigue kids. Spend a couple of bucks and take them for a “ride”.
- Quarter rides– Speaking of rides, if your local mall has quarter rides, this might be a good time to indulge the kids. Give them each a handful of quarters and let them decide which ones are the most fun.
These are just a few ideas to stay cool without losing your cool with your kids. With a little creativity you’ll be able to spend an afternoon at the mall in the comfort of the cool indoor air without spending an arm and a leg.
How do you beat the heat? Do you have any creative and low cost ideas for when the heat becomes unbearable? Please share by leaving a comment!