Tot Time Open Gym was my savior when my firstborn was a squirrelly toddler who needed a space to run off his pent-up wintertime energy. Perhaps you find yourself in the same boat? Browse through the listings below to find an open gym or open playtime near you and treat yourself to a (near) guaranteed naptime:
When: Ongoing Mon, Wed, Fri • 9:30-11am
Ages: 5 & under w/ caregiver
Details: Burn off some energy with other kids, develop motor skills and coordination. A special tot time for tykes ages 2 & under is held from 9-9:30am followed by open play for 5 & under until 11.
When: Fridays through March 31, 2017 • 10-11:30am
Ages: 1-5 w/ caregiver
Cost: $2 per child, under 1 year free
Details: A variety of play areas will be set up for kids to run, jump, crawl and roll indoors.
When: Mon, Wed-Fri • times vary, see this page for details
Ages: 6 & under for most activities, 5 & under for tot gym
Cost: $5.75/pp resident youth, $7.50/pp non-resident youth, caregivers free
Details: Lots to choose from here: Mondays bring art projects in the craft room, open gym with special tot toys is hosted Wednesdays & Thursdays, splash around during Tot Time Swim Mondays, Fridays & Sundays, and try out ice skating with your little one on Wednesdays (skate rental $2).
Eagan Community Center: Open Gym
1501 Central Pkwy, Eagan
When: Mon-Fri • 9-11:30am
Cost: $4 per child, under 18 mons free
Details: A variety of fun toys and sport equipment are available to play in the gym as well as play time in the Blast Indoor playground. The first Monday of the month features a bouncer for extra entertainment.
Eden Prairie Community Center: Tot Time Open Gym
16700 Valley View Rd, Eden Prairie
When: Mon-Fri • 9:30-11:30am (9:15-11:30 Thurs)
Ages: Best for ages 1-4
Cost: $4/pp ages 1-4, $5/pp ages 5+, under 1 and caregivers free.
Details: Participate in free play with balls, hoops, scooters, jump ropes, tumbling mats, parachutes, music and more. For $6/pp, admission to the Prairie Play Zone indoor playground is included.
When: Play Place is open Mon-Fri now through March 1, 2017 • 9-10:30am & 10:30am-noon. Turf Tots will be hosted in the spring.
Ages: 9 mon-5 years
Cost: Play Place is $3/child, Turf Tots $4/child, caregivers free
Details: Through the end of February, Play Place is a drop-in program where kids can play with equipment including balls, crawl tunnels, bounce houses, blocks, and more. In the spring, the playtimes moves to the indoor turf where there’s more room to run!
When: Mon & Wed • 10-11:30am
Ages: Best for ages 5 & under
Cost: $2.50/resident youth, $3/non-res youth, caregivers free
When: Times & parks vary
Ages: 5 & under with caregiver
Details: Finding tot times in the Minneapolis parks can be tricky. Click the above link and type “parent tot” into the activity search box to get a list of parks that offer drop-in play with scooters, balls, tumbling mats and more. You’ll need to sign up for an active pass, but it is free and you can do that the first time you go in.
When: Mon & Wed excluding holidays and school breaks • 10:30am-1:30pm
Ages: Preschool & under with caregiver
Cost: Admission to open gym is included in the price of admission to Eagles Nest Indoor Playground, $5.50/child, caregiver free.
Details: Gym equipment includes a bouncer, crawl tubes, mats, tumbling blocks and more.
When: Mon, Wed, Fri starting 10/31/16 • 10:30am-1:30pm
Ages: Best for ages 3-5
Cost: $4/resident youth, $5/non-resident youth, caregivers free
Details: During the chilly months, heat in the field house is turned on to 55 degrees for fun with inflatables, slides, nets and lots of space to run the kids ragged.
Rainbow Play Systems: Pay to Play
900 West 80th Street. Bloomington, MN 55420
When: Mon-Sat • 10am-4pm, Sun • 11am-3pm
Ages: All ages
Cost: $7 per child weekdays, $9/weekends
Details: Pay to Play includes a 2-hour block of playtime on the showroom equipment.
When: Tues-Fri through March 25 (begins Nov. 9, 2016) • 9:30-11:30am
Ages: 1-5 with caregiver
Cost: $2 per child
Details: Bounce in the inflatables, ride the big wheelers, play dress up or build with blocks on the creative carpet.
When: Daily Mon-Fri • Times vary depending on location
Ages: 5 & under with caregiver
Details: 16 recreation centers across St. Paul offer free, drop-in sessions of open play with a variety of scooters, balls, mats, and small slides available. Click the above bold link to find the center nearest you.