On select Thursday's we're going to feature three spots that should take you from morning until early afternoon (including lunch) with minimal traveling. They're designed to keep the kiddos entertained and going. Be warned, though: if you're toting more than one, these outings are a little tricky. We suggest finding another buddy with a pre-schooler and an infant/baby and switching it up a bit. One of you can stay in and watch the babies while the other handles the outing.
If you head on down highway 55 towards Cary, you'll hit a shopping center with three great spots all within walking distance: Jumpzone, Urban Turban, and Paint Your Pot. Surprisingly, the whole trek is only about 15 min. from SW Durham.
Hit Jumpzone first and burn off some of that late-morning energy. They have bouncy castles, slides, and running space galore. Most days they open at 10:00 (check the calendar), so if you get there at open you can get at least an hour or two of good playtime in before lunch. Jumpzone serves snacks, but we'd advise you skip the pizza and walk straight on down to Urban Turban around noon. Urban Turban serves kid-friendly Mediterranean food. Parents and caregivers can get the quick lunch buffet and kiddos can snack on pitas and hummus or order a grilled cheese pita or chicken nugget kebab. And after your kid(s) are exercised and full, you can head next door to Paint Your Pot to get some creative juices flowing. We've found that this activity is best done when energy is on the wane so it's perfect after a full morning. You may even get your kid(s) to sit and paint for more than 15 min.!
when to go: head out around 9:30 am and expect to head back before 2:00 pm
what to bring: all the usual pre-schooler supplies. If you need a diaper change, make sure to do it at Jumpzone... neither Urban Turban or Paint Your Pot have changing tables in their bathrooms.
what it'll cost you: Jumpzone: $9; lunch at Urban Turban: $10-20 for one child and one adult; painting at Paint Your Pot: from about $5 for a very simple tile and up. A mug for dad, mom, or grandparents will run you around $12. You're looking at at least $30 for the whole outing, but you *do* get some pottery out of it.
advisories: double-check calendars and prices before you go (as always).