For this month’s edition of Welcome to My World, we’re checking in with Vanessa from Kansas City.
Hey there! I'm Vanessa from Sunflower State of Mind. Today I'm excited to welcome you into my world and share some of my favorite things to do with kids in Kansas City!
The Shopping Mama: What are the best FREE things to do with kids?
Vanessa: In my opinion, the only thing better than finding a local place that your kids love, is finding a FREE local place that your kids love! For my family, that place is Deanna Rose Farmstead. Not only do kids get to see and pet farm animals, but they can feed baby goats, take a pony ride, go fishing, or wander around the trails and gardens. There are also several large playground areas, a general store, an ice cream parlor, and a diary barn. In other words, you won't be bored! The farmstead opens for the year on April 1st and we are anxiously counting down the days!
Another free favorite of ours -- John Anderson Park Sprayground is the perfect spot to spend a steamy summer day. With the splash pad and the playground side by side, the kids can run back and forth as they please. There are also plenty of covered picnic tables, so pack a lunch and make a day out of it!
TSM: Do you have any favorite place to eat out with kids?
Vanessa:Fritz's Railroad Restaurant is a Kansas City classic that you won't want to miss. Customers place their orders over an old-fashioned phone, then the food is delivered by a toy train and dropped right down to the booth. It's a magical experience for kids of all ages...especially if you top it off with a chocolate malt!
TSM: What are your favorite outdoor activities?
Vanessa: We love to pick fruit! Whether it's blueberries at The Berry Patch, strawberries and peaches at Gieringers, or apples at Cider Hill...in the summer and fall months, you can almost always find something that's in season and ready to be picked. It's a fun activity and learning experience for the little ones...not to mention you come home with buckets of delicious fresh fruit. Win win!
TSM: Do you have a favorite museum?
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Vanessa: The gorgeous glass exterior of the Museum at Prairie Fire is eye-catching, but what's inside is equally as impressive. The Discovery Room is an area where kids can be totally hands-on and explore subjects from paleontology to astronomy. It's not every day you get to put together a life-size dinosaur bone puzzle! Tickets for this room are separate from the rest of the museum and sessions run hourly.
TSM: Are there any favorite parks your family enjoys?
Vanessa: There are so many great parks in the Kansas City area that it's tough to pick just one. However, the one we find ourselves at the most is Black Hoof Park. Tucked back in the woods near Lake Lenexa, my favorite thing about this park is that there are three separate play areas for different ages and skills.
Also in Lenexa, Little Mill Creek North Park has the best play equipment around! You just can't beat the giant slides, the modern day merry-go-round, and everyone's favorite: the super-long zip line that kids can do themselves. The only problem is convincing the little Tarzans that it's time to go home!
TSM: Can you share a favorite go-to spot that you won't find in a tourist book?
Vanessa: Whether you're a KC native or just passing through, Grinter Farms in the late summer is a must see. Beautiful sunflowers seem to go on forever and it's a truly stunning sight! Visitors are welcome to roam around the fields, take pictures, and even cut some sunflowers to take home. The general suggestion is to leave $1 for every flower you take. Keep an eye on the farm facebook page to make sure you don't miss the bloom!
Vanessa: Thanks for letting me show you around my stomping grounds today!
TSM: Thank you for sharing your wonderful city! Looks like a great place to live and visit!
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