Springtime Family Fun in Waterloo Region

Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory

Always a favourite time of year in our household, spring holds the wonders of the first buds on the trees and maple sap collection. The kids are itching to get out on adventures and as parents we feel so much more free to cart the little ones from place to place. There are a lot of interesting and exciting things for the family to explore in our Region – here is a roundup of some favourites:

1. St Jacobs & Aberfoyle Model Railway
Only open weekends from April – December plus special holiday shows (March Break week) and other additions. See website for specific dates and times.
1440 King Street N, Building 3, St Jacobs, Ontario
Adult $8, Child $5, Senior/Student $7

st. jacobs aberfoyle model railwayThinking of treating your family to something off-the-beaten path and truly unique to our region? This “Marvelous Miniature World” was totally new to us & we had no idea what to expect before going in. What a wonderful surprise. Our kids were completely awestruck by the intricacy and attention to detail within the tiny magical world. Initially viewing the perfectly scaled buildings, town and scenery, we were pretty happy. Add to that the movement of the trains and precision of the train operators (yes, the trains are manually operated by a team of volunteer enthusiasts from above the display), the experience was one to remember. Bringing the whole undertaking to life are several volunteers on the floor who are a host of information about how the model was constructed (down to the most minute details), how the entire piece was deconstructed, moved and reconstructed in St Jacobs in 2012, and many other interesting facts about the piece. It’s been a few weeks since we visited and my three year old girl is still talking about it – how about that for a glowing reference.

2. Music and Movement
Fridays until March 9, 2018 from 9:30am – 11am
Kitchener Market — 300 King Street East, Kitchener, Ontario
FREE to attend

A perfect little outing at Kitchener Market for the wee little ones (age 0 – 6), a Music and Movement class will get your kids & you moving and exploring rhythm, song and dance. This is a great place to meet other local Moms and Dads as well as learn a few fun activities to do with your kids at home. My two kids absolutely love the comradery of dancing and clapping with kids of their own age group.

#keepingwarm #saturdaymarket #dtklove #dance #livemusic #kitchenermarket

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3. Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory
Tuesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm (open Holiday Mondays)
2500 Kossuth Rd, Cambridge, Ontario
General (age 13-64) $14.25, Child (3-12) $7.50, Senior (65+) $12.25

Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory - baby with a bugI have written about the Butterfly Conservatory before and I’m including it again this season for good reason. This venue really is a spectacular addition to our region. From the dedicated and knowledgeable staff to the unique, beautiful & creepy crawly creatures inside the Conservatory, kids of all ages can fill a whole afternoon exploring and learning through play. Even the smallest patrons can get in on the fun – in fact, my ten month old fell in love with a beetle who crawled all over her little fingers and arms until she couldn’t bear to let him go. For March Break again this year, the Butterfly Conservatory is hosting BugFeast 2018 – and their theme is chocolate. Bring your kids over the break to acquaint the family to insect delicacies like white chocolate bark with roasted ants or Chocolate “chirp” cookie made with cricket flour… yum?

4. Waterloo Region Museum
Regular hours until April 30: Mon-Fri 9:30 – 5pm, Sat/Sun 11-5pm (hours change May 1, see website)
10 Huron Road, Kitchener, Ontario
Adult $11, Child under 4 FREE, Child 5-12 $5, Senior/Student $8, Family (2 adults, 2 children) $25

Wild Weather Exhibit at Waterloo Region MuseumA new exhibit has arrived at the museum and it will blow you away… literally! The Wild Weather exhibit showcases and details all different types of weather from tornados to storms and more. This interactive exhibit will allow your kids to jump in and dig in on their own terms as they add cows or other objects to a tornado, create their own wind vortex and (our favourite), dance up a storm with the reward of real rain and snow for those who danced hard enough. The Waterloo Region Museum is always worth a revisit as their exhibitions change at different times of the year – bringing something new to your little explorers.

5. Centre in the Square
Various dates and times
101 Queen St N, Kitchener, Ontario
See website for individual dates & pricing (tickets in the Studio Theatre start as low as $10)

Going to see a show at the Centre In The Square has always been one of my favourite ways to treat my kids to a ‘fancy’ night or afternoon out. They get to dress up nice, show their ticket at the admission gate and overall feel pretty special as we arrive at the upscale venue. Whether it’s an interactive show in their Studio Theatre or a seated event in the Main Theatre, each show is sure to impress. This spring’s lineup includes some pretty fantastic titles: Shh! We Have a Plan, Polar Bears go Up, Shopkins Live!, and Peppa Pig Live!