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Two Fun Libraries for Columbus Kids

Around this time last year, I shared some of our favorite libraries for reading AND playing (here and here). Since then, we’ve got quite a few more library visits under our belt and I wanted to share them with you (two this week and two more in a few weeks)! If you’re looking to shake up the routine a little bit, branch out and try one of these fun libraries! (No pun intended! 😉 )

1. Bexley Public Library

2411 E. Main Street, Bexley, Ohio 43209, 614-231-2793

The Bexley Library is amazing for kids! I can’t believe I’d missed out on it for so long! There is a play area for kids that is huge! My kids could have stayed here ALL day!

Seriously, we need this play rug!

There’s a castle play house, a theater for puppet shows, a table for drawing, magna tiles, letters, dinosaurs, and the list goes on!

  

The library offers story times followed by play times in the play area for babies, toddlers and preschoolers. They also have a pajama story time on Wednesday nights and an Imagination Station on Friday afternoons. See the full calendar of events here. Plus Kitties is DIRECTLY across the street with my favorite chocolate chip cookie ever!

2. Grove City Library

3959 Broadway, Grove City, OH 43123, 614-875-6716

The Grove City Library opened up in the fall of 2016 and we visited around the holidays. Another GREAT kids’ area here!

The space is large and open with lots of natural light!

The children’s area is called Harper’s Grove, named after Laura Harper, the president emeritus of the Friends of Southwest Public Libraries Board of Trustees. Her donation to the library was in honor of her husband and his aunt, Irene Harper who was the first librarian of Southwest Public Libraries!

Harper’s Grove includes, reading areas, a puppet theater, an interactive learning wall, light table, duplos, and baskets full of educational toys in the Play Corner!

The library offers several story times throughout the week, programs for teens and activities on Saturdays, too! See the entire event calendar here.

If you’re looking to shake up your library routine, these two libraries would make for a GREAT morning out with the kids!

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5 on Friday: Kid-Friendly Coffee Shops

As a freelance and contract worker, my husband spends most of his days in some kind of coffee shop setting. When I told him I was putting together a list of kid-friendly coffee shops, he said, “There is such a thing?” The fact that my own husband said such a thing is proof enough this post is needed. 😉 Coffee is a big part of my life, so the kids are gonna have to come along. Here are 5 best-bets for the times when you need to bring the kids:

1. Coffee Connections of Hilliard, Hilliard

This spot has to win the most kid-friendly coffee shop, hands down! Coffee Connections of Hilliard has two buildings. In the front (on Main St.) there is a full-sized coffee shop with two floors of seating areas and in a separate building in the back there is a community room with a play area just for kids upstairs! My kids were so entertained here recently that my husband and I had a nearly uninterrupted coffee date with friends! There is a changing table and even an area for babies to play!

4004 Main St., Hilliard, OH 43026

2, Grandview Grind, Grandview Heights

Grandview Grind has a large seating area and, in the back, there is a couch with a book shelf full of books, games and crayons! I was there recently with my two year old and he even found an Elmo book! There is a large drink menu and treats for sale as well.

1423 A Grandview Ave., Columbus, OH 43212

3. Bottoms Up Coffee Co-Op, Franklinton

Bottoms Up is a new coffee shop/co-working space in Franklinton. I have been known to stop by this coffee shop with two kids when we’re on our way to somewhere else just to get the Canary Island (an espresso drink made with condensed milk!). You don’t just “stop by” coffee shops with kids, getting them in and out of car seats just for fun, unless the reward is worth it! Also, they have a cute little table where kids can color and great food options!

1069 W.Broad St., Columbus, OH 43222

4. The Bexley Coffee Shop, Bexley

Bexley Coffee Shop is another safe bet for taking the kids! The coffee shop is a pretty good size and there are yummy treats like the chocolate chip coffee cake (pictured above). My 2 year old said, “this is the best chocolate chip cake in the whole galaxy!” so that must be saying something! I like their fun selection of local handmade items and during the summer they have a story time for kids hosted by Bexley Public Library!

492 N. Cassady Ave., Columbus, OH 43209

5. Espresso 22, Powell

If you’re wandering around downtown Powell and you need a pick-me-up, stop in at Espresso 22! They serve One Line Coffee and every day they have a fresh selection of Der Dutchman donuts!  There is a good amount of seating here and it’s very open. These are two things I associate with being kid-friendly! Last time I was there they had a Nutella Latte on the menu. Just sayin’

22 Liberty St., Powell, OH 43065

What coffee shops have you braved with the kids in tow?

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What Should We Do This Weekend? February 17-20, 2017 President’s Day Edition

1. Open Play at Thompson Recreation Center

When: Friday, February 17, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: 1189 Dennison Ave, Columbus, OH 43201

The gym is open for this free play time for kids 6 and under! There are balls, basketball hoops, scooters, toys, jump ropes and more!

2. Story time at Tree of Life Play Cafe

When: Friday, February 17, 2017
Time: 10:15 AM and 11:00 AM
Location: 3708 Fishinger Blvd., Hilliard, OH 43026
Phone: 614-363-4041

Local author Christy Sturtz will share her book Just Try It, Georgie! about a giraffe who tries new food. There will also be a craft time! There are two story times available.

3. Superhero Breakfast at  COSI

When: Saturday, February 18, 2017
Time: 9:00 AM
Location: 333 W. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: 614-228-2674

The Superhero Breakfast includes a breakfast buffet, meet and greet with Black Widow, Iron Man and Spiderman, a take home activity, entertainment and a photo! See the link for info on tickets.

4. STEMfest at The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art & Technology

When: Saturday & Sunday, February 18 & 19, 2017
Time: 9:30 AM – 4:00 PM
Location: 55 S 1st St., Newark, OH 43055
Phone: 740-349-9277

Admission is FREE to The Works this weekend during the 2-day STEMfest! Watch students compete in STEM-based challenges designed by local industries and businesses!

5. Chase from Paw Patrol Meet and Greet at Skate Zone 71

When: Saturday, February 18, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: 4900 Evanswood Dr., Columbus, OH 43229

Chase from Paw Patrol will be visiting Skate Zone 71! There will be a special Paw Patrol Meal Deal: $3.50 for 1 Slice of Cheese Pizza & Drink! See link for all details on pricing.

6. Maple Syrup Tours at Stratford Ecological Center

When: Saturday, February 18, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Location: 3083 Liberty Rd., Delaware, OH 43015
Phone: 740-363-2548

Hour-long tours are available to discover how maple syrup is collected and processed while enjoying the beautiful forest at Stratford Ecological Center! You must register in advance.

7. Mighty Mighty Construction Site Story Time at Barnes and Noble

When: Saturday February 18, 2017
Time:  11:00 AM
Location: your local Barnes and Noble

Sherri Duskey Rinker, the author of Good Night, Good Night Construction Site has a new book with a focus on working together! Hear the book read and take part in coloring and other activities!

8. Black History Storytime at Bexley Public Library

When: Saturday, February 18, 2017
Time: 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Location: 2411 E. Main St., Bexley, OH 43209
Phone: 614-231-2878

Each Saturday in February, the library is offering a Black History Storytime featuring the opportunity to celebrate and learn about famous black Americans!

9. Lego Club at Westland Area Library

When: Saturday, February 18, 2017
Time: 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Location: 4740 W. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43228
Phone: 614-878-1301

Kids can work in teams or on their own to complete a LEGO challenge!

10. Sunday Story Time at Gramercy Books

When: Sunday, February 19, 2017
Time: 12:00 PM
Location: 2424 East Main St., Bexley , OH 43209
Phone: 614-867-5515

This story time for kids happens on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of the month at this new local bookstore.

President’s Day Activities:


11. President’s Day Art Morning at Picassos

When: Monday, February 20, 2017
Time: 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: 1974 North Mallway Dr., Upper Arlington, OH, 43221
Phone: 614-354-1930

Kids 6 and up can take part in a patriotic art project! Supplies and snack are included! Registration is available online.

12. President’s Day Free Day at Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

When: Monday, February 20, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Location: 4850 Powell Rd., Powell, OH 43065
Phone: 614-645-3400

Admission is free all day at the Columbus Zoo! Parking is $10/car.

13. Special Hours at COSI

When: Monday, February 20, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Location: 333 W. Broad St, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: 614-228-2674

COSI (normally closed on Mondays) will be open from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM! Their new exhibit Mindbender Mansion and Amazing Mazes will be on display!

14. Jazz Adventures at Franklin Park Conservatory

When: Monday, February 20, 2017
Time: 11:00 AM & 2:00 PM
Location: 1777 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43203
Phone: 614-715-8000

Jazz Arts Group will be onsite to explore the history of jazz. There will be live music and audience participation!

15. President’s Day at Ohio History Center

When: Monday, February 20, 2017
Time: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Location: 800 E. 17th Ave., Columbus OH 43211
Phone: 614-297-2300

Ohio History Center will be open on Monday with special presidential crafts, activities and speakers!

16. $5/Hour Child Play Day at Brick of Dreams

When: Monday, February 20, 2017
Time: 12:30 PM – 6:00 PM
Location: 6190 Shamrock Ct, Ste C., Dublin, OH 43016
Phone: 614-766-0000

Brick of Dreams will offer open play for $5/hour/kid! Regular price is $7/hour/kid.

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*Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead or check links to confirm activities.  Enjoy what you do today!*