The Go-To Guide: Top Central Ohio Play Places – Columbus Parent
December 6, 2019 | In:
From gaming venues to play cafes to trampoline parks, these 37 locations are hot spots for family fun.
Playing outdoors is a great way to burn off energy. But there are going to be times during the winter months when your kids are going to profess they’re both bored and too cold, and they start climbing the walls.
Fortunately, Central Ohio offers an abundance of fun places for children to play and for parents to watch—or participate. And many are year-round destinations.
We’ve put together a list of some of the most popular play places in the region. Many have separate areas for preschool-aged children, and some offer classes and other programming. You’ll also find amenities such as parent seating, separate café or lounge areas, and food and drink menus.
Before planning a visit, call or check online to verify prices, hours and other details, such as age and height restrictions. For venues that offer classes as well as public sessions, hours listed are “open play” times.
To suggest a location we should consider adding to our list, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
PLAY GYMS AND MORE
Central Park at Westerville Christian Church
471 E. College Ave., Westerville; 614-682-6472; wcchurch.life/centralpark
Hosted by Westerville Christian Church, this play place for ages 2-12 offers an enclosed tunnels-and-nets area and a place for kids to socialize. The area is free and open to the public during scheduled times. Socks are required.
Hours: 10-11:30 a.m. the first, third and fourth Tuesdays and Thursdays of the month, as well as the first, second and third Saturdays. The schedule follows that of the Westerville City School District, so the venue is closed when there’s no school.
Fun in the Jungle
345 McGill St., Sunbury; 740-913-0692; funinthejungle.com
There’s plenty for little animals to do, including a play area, arcade, minibowling, Nerf wars and more. Separate jungle gyms are available for toddlers and older children. The arcade is $8 per person (all day); jungle gyms are $7 per child (all day); minibowling is $2.25 per person per game; and mini roller skating is $4.
Hours: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays; 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays; 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturdays; and 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sundays
710 Cross Pointe Blvd., Gahanna; 614-571-1220; gymskills.com
Families can get physical at this gymnastics-centered facility offering balance beams, bars and a foam pit during open gym hours. Toddler-specific hours and classes also are available. Open gym rates are $15 for nonmembers. Toddler open gym is $12.
Hours: 7-9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Toddler hours are 9:30 a.m. to noon Tuesdays, and 9:30 a.m. to noon and 5:30-7 p.m. Fridays.
7708 Green Meadows Drive, Suite A, Lewis Center; 740-549-3547; gymx-treme.com
Gym X-Treme offers gymnastics classes, but you don’t have to tumble to have fun here. During open gym time, kids have access to a foam pit, in-ground trampoline, rock climbing wall and various mats, bars and balance beams to practice cartwheels or create an obstacle course. There is a separate area for preschoolers. Admission is $10.
Hours: 8-10 p.m. Fridays, with daytime sessions from noon to 1 p.m. select Wednesdays and Thursdays during the school year
The Jungle Gymnastics Adventure Center
325 S. Sandusky St., Delaware; 740-363-7552; thejunglegym.biz
This longstanding venue teaches gymnastics as a building block for all sports and also offers parkour. The gym has an indoor climbing wall, balance beam, zip line and other obstacles. Open gym sessions are $10 for ages 3 and older, $5 for ages 1-2.
Hours: 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and Saturdays
704 Radio Drive, Lewis Center; 740-201-8764; momiland.com
This indoor playspace opened earlier in 2019. The 5,690-square-foot indoor playground features a slide, ball pit, foam pit, trampolines, a climbing wall and more. There’s also a motion-sensor interactive area. Admission is $15 for the first child, $10 for each additional child. Children younger than age 2 are $10, and those under 12 months are free with a paid sibling. Memberships and other activities are offered.
Hours: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays
2620 Sawmill Place Blvd., Columbus; 614-537-09441; ninjaciti.com
This new ninja warrior-themed indoor fitness and play space was scheduled to open in late November. Ninja Citi boasts more than 100 obstacles and 12 courses, plus parkour and a rock wall. The business has open gym times as well as classes for children and adults. Open gym rate is $15 for the first hour; family specials and memberships are available.
Hours: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 9 a.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays; and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays
484 W. Olentangy St., Powell; 614-792-3700; recreationsoutlet.com
Yes, Recreations Outlet is a playset retailer, but it also offers a large indoor play area with basketball hoops, trampolines, swing sets and an Amish-built playhouse. Kids can play for $6 on weekdays and $8 on weekends and school holidays, or for $2 during charitable play hours, when a portion of proceeds are donated to a nonprofit.
Hours: 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays; and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. Charitable play hours are 9-11 a.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays.
Urban Air Adventure Park
6314 E. Livingston Ave., Reynoldsburg; 614-739-1654; urbanairtrampolinepark.com
Urban Air Adventure Park, which opened this fall, offers jumping, climbing, bouncing and dropping in ninja-themed, gladiator-themed and fun-themed areas. Admission begins at $13.99; $29.99 provides full access. Customers must purchase socks for $3.
Hours: 3-8 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays; 3-10 p.m. Fridays; 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturdays; and noon to 8 p.m. Sundays
We Rock the Spectrum Gym
1250 E. Powell Road, Lewis Center; 614-396-8773; werockthespectrumcolumbus.com
We Rock the Spectrum Gym offers a specialized place for kids with special needs to play with other children. During open play, all equipment and activities are available for supervised use, including a zip line, sensory-based toys and an arts and crafts area. Open play is $12 per child.
Hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays, and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. (Call to confirm availability on weekends.)