Won't somebody please think of the children?
August 24, 2007 2:40 PM   Subscribe

Local secrets to family entertainment in Seattle?

I have some relatives visiting me in downtown Seattle, and I was wondering if anyone had suggestions for family-friendly activities that might not have made it into the tourism brochures. I've been living here a year, but being a couch potato with no kids I'm not exactly the experienced guide they were probably hoping for.

Restaurants, museums, things like that are all fine suggestions, as long as they can accommodate four adults and three kids (ages 12, 4, and 0.5 years). Thanks!
posted by Riki tiki to Travel & Transportation around Seattle, WA (9 answers total)
The Pacific Science Center (good for kids, and close to the needle), Seattle Art Museum, the Olympic Sculpture Garden (it's outdoors and makes for a nice walk up from the Pier below the Markets) are all good starts. Basically spend some time around the market district, there's plenty of places to eat and depending on how much walking is possible you can head down to the pier for more shopping and stuff (and the aquarium). Also, for something a bit fun for the adults (kids are welcome too as long as you don't go friday or saturday nights) head out to Red Hook for a brewery tour, Chateau St Michelle winery is right next door as well. Good luck, not sure how much of that is news to you if you live downtown...
posted by mikw at 3:19 PM on August 24, 2007

Best answer: The Ballard Locks should be fun.
posted by jclovebrew at 3:19 PM on August 24, 2007

St. Edward State Park, in Kenmore, has an excellent playground, and the adults can go for a hike.
posted by The corpse in the library at 3:37 PM on August 24, 2007

If you do stop by the Locks, head to Archie McPhee for some wacky shopping and Cupcake Royale for some cupcakes.

Otherwise, the tourbooks are pretty loaded with good stuff.
posted by kables at 3:39 PM on August 24, 2007

Best answer: Gas Works Park has plenty of space and things to occupy both kid and adult.

I second the Locks (could watch the boats and salmon all day).

You can go for a nice walk and rent some boats at Green Lake.

Kid and adult will also get a kick out of the underground. (i learned a great deal).

While the various science centers, needles, etc are neat, I like taking folks to the more open areas.
posted by hrbrmstr at 8:48 PM on August 24, 2007

Do you know about the Northwest Puppet Center?
posted by sculpin at 9:33 PM on August 24, 2007

Tour a candy factory!
posted by Bella Sebastian at 9:44 PM on August 24, 2007

A few suggestions:
  • Ballard Locks: Very cool to watch the boats coming in and out. I loved it when I was a kid, and was surprised at how interesting it still was when I went back recently. Also, I think this is the time of year when you can see the salmon jumping up the salmon ladder (although you might want to double check on that one).
  • Pike Place Market: The obvious choice, certainly, but it really does have something for everyone. Kids go ga-ga over the fish throwing, Mom and Dad can look at the interesting shops, and everyone goes to Beecher's for some Mac and Cheese.
  • Gameworks: More for the kids than the adults, it's just an enormous video game place (if I remember it's like 4 or 5 floors) down around 7th and Pike.
  • Columbia Center: I haven't personally been, but I've been told that the view from the top floor is breathtaking... I could see people of all ages enjoying it.
  • Ferry to Bainbridge: The ride is lots of fun, and the town area is cute (for an hour or two at least). If you want a longer ferry ride, you could always go to Bremerton instead... better view of downtown on the return trip.
  • Museum of Flight: Down near Boeing Field, this is an enormous museum full of historic airplanes. Pretty neat, and great for kids as well as adults.
Hope that helps a little!
posted by stilly at 10:09 AM on August 25, 2007

Sci-fi museum. It's thirty-one flavors of awesome.
posted by The GoBotSodomizer at 2:21 PM on August 25, 2007

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