Summer is flying by and before you know it, it will be time to buy the school supplies and get the kids ready to go back to school. But there’s still time to have some fun! We’ve created a list of places and activities around the Region for you to explore. So get in the car and chart a course for fun!
For nature lovers:
Tippecanoe State Park https://www.in.gov/dnr/parklake/2965.htm
Close enough for a day trip, but plenty of areas to stay overnight, Tippecanoe State Park has much to offer. Hiking trails run throughout the park and vary in length and difficulty. The Tippecanoe river runs through the park and is perfect for canoeing and kayaking. There are plenty of areas to enjoy a nice soak in the sun while watching for the various wildlife that lives in the park. Birdwatchers, bring your binoculars!
Friendship Botanic Gardens https://friendshipgardens.org/
Right off of Highway 12 sits 105 acres of pristine gardens and woodlands. Four trails, the longest being one mile, are perfect for a short trek through the park, along creeks and beside lakes. Be mindful of all the animals that are living there! There are also 20 manicured gardens for your eyes to behold and learn about our friendship with foreign countries. The Children’s Garden is the perfect spot to let the kids run and play.
Lemon Lake Park http://www.lakecountyparks.com/244/Lemon-Lake
Hailed as the first Lake County Park, Lemon Lake Park has more than 400 acres to explore. Take a hike, play disc golf, catch some fish, or just let the kids run free at the playground as you enjoy the beauty of nature. Make sure to bring Fido as there is also a large dog park.
For Science lovers:
Challenger Learning Center https://www.clcnwi.com/
Are you looking for something fun to do that also offers a learning experience? Check out Challenger Learning Center in Hammond. Learn more about space and astronauts through their summer camp’s program. There are several age levels. The center also puts on full-dome Planetarium shows as well as a LASER experience. Fun for all ages! Check out their website for their upcoming camps and events.
Paul H Douglas Center at Indiana Dunes https://www.nps.gov/indu/planyourvisit/deec.htm
With the dunes at our doorstep, there are many opportunities for learning through fun. The Paul H Douglas Center is a great place to explore more about the Dunes. From interactive exhibits to a nature play zone, there are plenty of fun activities for the family who loves learning more about our environment.
Washington Park Zoo http://washingtonparkzoo.com/
Calling all animal lovers! Washington Park Zoo in Michigan City is a one-day activity for the family. There are more than 200 animals to see, a safari train to ride, and even an observation tower that you can ascend to see Lake Michigan views. There’s plenty to see and so much to learn.
For History lovers:
Buckley Homestead https://www.lakecountyparks.com/149/Buckley-Homestead
Step back into Region history and see what it was like for residents here 100 years ago. Tour historic buildings, see how a farm would have operated, and much more. The homestead has more than 500 acres to explore and experience.
LaPorte County Historical Society Museum https://laportecountyhistory.org/
Want to view vintage automobiles, Native American artifacts, and many other items? Head over to the LaPorte County Historical Society Museum in historic La Porte. Learn more about the history of LaPorte County. A perfect day trip for those who love to learn and take a peek at the past.
Bailly Homestead and Chellberg Farm https://www.nps.gov/indu/learn/historyculture/chellberg.htm
Fur-trader Honore Gratien Joseph Bailly de Messein’s homestead is a chance to see how one of the first non-native residents to the area lived. Walk the trails to the Bailly cemetery or over to the Chellberg farm. At the farm, you can earn even more about the Swedish family that settled there and started making maple syrup. It’s a great way to get a workout and learn about our early Region history.
For Sports lovers:
Take part in America’s favorite past-time at a SouthShore Railcats Baseball game. The park is easily situated right off of the toll road and is family-friendly. Many yummy food (and adult beverage) stands allow you to chow down while the batter’s up. There’s a play area with bounce houses for kids who need time to play and run.
Edge Adventures Parks https://www.edgeadventureparks.com/deep-river
Do you have a child who can’t stop climbing? Take them to Edge Adventures Parks in Crown Point. With zip lines and treetop obstacle courses, you can climb and play for hours. There is also a Kid’s Park with a lower course for smaller children. There’s more than 50 treetop obstacles and zip lines for the whole family to enjoy.
Get a bike-eye view of Porter County on the Calumet Bike Trail. For active families, this unpaved, 9.1 mile trail offers a great opportunity to get the bikes out and get moving. Gear up and get pedaling!