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Kid-Oriented Activities
updated: Jul 08, 2014, 11:45 AM

hey ed, what are the most kid-friendly/kid-oriented independently owned small businesses in Santa Barbara? Looking mostly for activities. Family from out of state coming into town.

 COMMENT 533781 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 11:49 AM

I have heard great things about Knit-Fit on Carrillo.


 COMMENT 533782 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 11:55 AM

Cloud 10 Jump Club


 COMMENT 533786 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 12:14 PM

How old are the kids? Makes a big difference in were you might want to go.


 COMMENT 533787 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 12:17 PM

Michael's has craft classes.


 COMMENT 533791P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 12:39 PM

Thank you for considering independent, locally owned small businesses. It a little disappointing when a good person/neighbor who manages rentals usually only uses the Big Boys at Home Depot and their kin. There are many local businesses who match the Big Box prices and their service is much better - not all the time, but often.


 COMMENT 533792 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 12:44 PM

Knit-Fit is wonderful! A great way to get some creative time in without having to make a mess at your own house. My daughter and I have discovered a number of new crafts there that we would never have tried otherwise.


 MACSCIDOR agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 01:23 PM

Bennett's Educational Materials [Magnolia Shopping Center, across from Ralphs] 5130 Hollister Ave (near Walnut). Great resource = if you want to purchase items. Not aware of any "activities" associated with the store -- but games & books for sale. They may know about some local activity spots.


 COMMENT 533803P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 01:34 PM

Butterflies Alive! at the Museum of Natural History, and independent nature discovery activities in the Museum Backyard.


 COMMENT 533804 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 01:43 PM

Kayak rentals at the Sea Center.


 COMMENT 533813 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 01:59 PM

Art From Scrap


 COMMENT 533818P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 02:07 PM

Surf camps/lessons, perhaps... Sorry, I don't know any names, just know there are several around town-particularly Santa Clause Lane. There's also Padaro Beach Grill right there, which has a sandbox for little ones.


 COMMENT 533820 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 02:17 PM

533803P is spot on! In general the Museum of Natural History is amazing. Went there all the time as a youngster but it has been transformed into so much more. Took the granddaughters there a few weeks ago & we there for about 4 hours having a wonderful time. The Butterflies Alive exhibit is really awesome!


 COMMENT 533824P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 02:43 PM

820, your granddaughters are lucky! You sound like the funnest grandma :-)


 COMMENT 533825P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 02:46 PM

824P, again. 820, forgot the "/grandpa" in last post..


 COMMENT 533826 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 03:02 PM

My kids always loved the carousel and then the Sea Center on Stearns Wharf.


 COMMENT 533831 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 03:25 PM

How old are they...7, 10, 13, 17? Makes a world of difference. Just try and get a 17 yr old to go to the museum of natural history with you. I dare you. It's easier giving a cat a bath.


 COMMENT 533837P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 03:30 PM

The libraries have free great summer programs encouraging reading.

Bennett's in Magnolia Shopping Center has an ongoing Where's Waldo Scavenger Hunt and also has a Lego Club Friday s late afternoon.


 COMMENT 533842 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 03:37 PM

Evening hike to Seven Falls to watch the sunset.


 COMMENT 533850 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 03:46 PM

They have that new trampoline place in the Turnpike Shopping Center, my 10yr niece had fun there.


 COMMENT 533861P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 04:26 PM

Cloud 10 (Turnpike/Hollister, where Craft Essentials used to be) is a trampoline place that's great for all ages, kids and adults alike. If you're up for the drive (and don't mind spending $100 or more for the family), Golf N Stuff in Ventura is fun for all ages and a lovely drive. Zoo plus Wharf is a fun day for most ages. If they're older, how about renting kayaks or paddleboards? Goleta Beach, Tucker's Grove or Stow Grove are some of our favorite parks and playgrounds.


 COMMENT 533865 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 04:35 PM

Well if they are from the gulf coast or hawaii or something like that then you might have to get inventive, but otherwise you have miles of great, free beaches to keep the youngsters occupied.


 BECKY agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 04:35 PM

We had out-of-town relatives visit last month. The kids loved walking inside a whale at the Museum of Natural History. They loved visiting the sea center. They had a great time eating Mexican food at Lito's (lunch) and Pepe's (dinner). We went to the beach (of course! with our boogie-boards.) We stopped at a soccer shop on Milpas for one of the kids (who is mad about soccer). We drove around UCSB to encourage the oldest teen to stay on track for college. We walked around briefly on the pier (after the Sea Center visit), as well as went to the top of the courthouse and outside the Mission. [Top of the courthouse tower was a surprise hit, because of the gorgeous day and the orientation and overview it provides.] 3 kids from 9-15, and their parents all had a great time, and it wasn't too costly. If they'd stayed longer, we would have gone for hikes, to Solvang, Stow House, Zoo... So many fun things to do here.


 FLICKA agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 05:48 PM

How nice you're looking to give them a good time. Good suggestions here.


 COMMENT 533893P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 05:49 PM

Petrini's or Presto Pasta for local Italian family dining. Try out taquerias you've never been to. Both piers/parks, breakwater, Hendry's beach. Sight seeing at the skate park. Kid's World playground. (again, all without knowing interests or ages, nor am I a parent). Have heard that Sea Museum on pier is boring.

I wish I could say the kinetic sculpture at the airport! LOVE that thing! Jan. 2011: "Beginning February 1st, the iconic kinetic sculpture synonymous with the Santa Barbara Airport experience will undergo a complete overhaul. The piece has been on long-term loan from the David Bermant Foundation and will return later this year when the new Terminal becomes operational."
Good Time Clock IV 1984

Is it really still locked up in the airport?!

It should be at the Art Museum or Museum of Natural History. Maybe the Bermant Foundation wants it in a safer, more private place?


 COMMENT 533894P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 06:00 PM

There really aren't many suggestions here, yet when "activities for kids" is brought up in Edhat conversation, everyone says "go swim, play at the beach and hike." I didn't do much of that stuff as a kid. I did like to read and ride my bike, and had a horse for several years.

If it doesn't disturb you, you could tour the animal shelters on Overpass Road. There's always the zoo... (ducks flames). Or maybe flaming duck? Oh, Lake Los Carneros.

You could walk around Earl Warren Showgrounds during the biggest show of the year; the National Horse & Flower Show, July 9-13. (Dang, the most interesting part was July 3-5. the 19th District Agricultural Association doesn't even put out press releases? Local media no longer covers it. I'm old. News Press used to run daily articles about it, with photos.)

There are zero arcades or game rooms anymore because everyone has "devices." There's Golf & Stuff in Ventura... I'm old. How are you and/or the parents going to tear the kids' eyes away from electronics?


 COMMENT 533901P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 06:43 PM

We have young cousins from a landlocked state in town. They want to go to the beach every day.


 COMMENT 533910 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 07:28 PM

Farmers Markets-very unique for out of state folks. Kims nails at Turnpike does terrific pedi/mani for kids, the free pools (los Banos, Oak Park, and Ortega if they are young (under 6), picnic at a park (chase Palm and then do the carousal), kayak, stand up paddle, take the water taxi from the pier to the harbor, ride the trolley-all over, if older, segways, the zoo, ty warner sea center, butterfly beach, high tea, free concerts, take amtrack to carp and back..


 COMMENT 533933P agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-08 09:23 PM

The Bermant clock that used to be at the airport was much fun - sure hope we can enjoy it again in a Santa Barbara public space.


 COMMENT 533974 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 08:52 AM

I'm surprised no one's mentioned the Land Shark yet. You get a great bird's eye view as the Land Shark cruises the downtown city streets, and then get properly excited as it heads down the boat launching ramp into the sea for a tour of the harbor. Land Shark tours are a little pricey (but only a little), but they're worth every nickel. Kids, of course, think the Land Shark is the greatest thing this side of Disneyland. Which it kind of is.


 COMMENT 533986 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 09:20 AM

Go to Rockin' Kids at La Cumbre Plaza!


 COMMENT 533992 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 09:31 AM

Santa Barbara Koi is a fun, interesting and different place, all ages. Haven't been in a while, used to be able to buy food and feed the koi (causing a fish frenzy).


 COMMENT 533994 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 09:38 AM



 COMMENT 534005 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 09:52 AM

SB Rock Gym has Climbing walls on lower state st . A Big hit with visiting gr kids & nieces & nephews ages 10 - 20. The staff is really good with 1st timers :)


 COMMENT 534009 agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 09:56 AM

I second Art From Scrap! It's soooo wonderful! I have been grateful to that place for many years. It's very very affordable and the best place ever to put an imagination to work!


 DOG MOM agree helpful negative off topic

2014-07-09 09:54 PM

http://www.exploreecology.org/ Check out Explore Ecology for the workshops offered at Art From Scrap, their retail outlet at Garden & Cota. There are special ones for summer they have been scheduling.



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