Thursday, 17 January 2013

Kid friendly day out in the SF Bay Area - Lindsay Wildlife Museum

Kid friendly day out in the SF Bay Area

If you are looking for ways to keep your kid entertained this winter, a visit to the Lindsay Wildlife museum could be the answer. An indoor museum, with a park outside - so this can even work on cold and/rainy day.

Tucked away in Walnut Creek, its about a 45 minute drive over the San Mateo bridge from the Peninsula. We had a big breakfast and started out planning to reach there by about 10 am. After a quick snack in the car on reaching (to avoid any hunger tantrums by 2yo) we went in and got started. The entry fees are $7 for adults, $6 for seniors 65+, $5 for children 2 -17, but if you have a SF bay area library membership, chances are you can get in for free, thanks to the Discover& Go program. 

See live, non-releasable California wild animals - Hawks, owls, eagles and other birds of prey perch overhead. There are also a fox, bobcat, opossum, coyote, Snakes, toads, turtles and other reptiles and amphibians exhibits. Young and old volunteers wander around offering information and answering questions, and they have regular sessions - Petting Circle,Live Animal Encounters - where kids can learn more about an animal - 'creature powers', habitat etc. Some of the fun things for kids include a fly like an eagle simulation with a birds eye view, microscopes to look through, animal sounds all at kid friendly height and meant for kids.

The basement has exhibits about local flora and fauna, and native Indian life and artifacts. From food they ate, to hunting habits and weaponry to baby pouches and grain baskets - its interesting, and not just for the kids. The volunteers are kind, patient, good with kids and animals and full of information. You can see that they care, and thats really the best way to show kids how passion and commitment can translate into meaningful work. There's also a gift shop- with interesting books and toys, mostly wildlife centric that make a good takeaway.

We've been there twice so far and my 2yo has touched a mouse, been introduced to an eagle, met a rattlesnake and a fox. We will probably go again :)

Both times we have finished this visit with a walk in downtown Walnut Creek and a meal at the Counter, also kid friendly - with kiddie meals and a toy for our 2yo. 

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