The chilly weather might force your little ones indoors, but they don't have to be confined to your living room all winter long.
After you've made your umpteenth fort and your kids are climbing the walls, get up and out with our list of play places across Nassau County. And don't forget to check out our rundown of Indoor Places in Suffolk County, as well as Play Cafes on Long Island.
Active Kidz Long Island — Jericho
200 Robbins Ln
Active Kidz has a number of attractions, including an adventure maze, laser tag, inflatables, toddler center, ball pit/cannon area and a rock climbing wall. Open-play sessions vary from week to week and may include only some attractions. The schedule can be found on its events calendar or by calling. Active Kidz is primarily a party space so call and double-check open-play times. Prices are either per activity or bundled into activity combination packages.
Bounce! Trampoline Sports — Syosset
310 Michael Drive
Open bounce sessions, dodgeball fun, foam pits, inflatables, and yes, trampoline after trampoline are all available here for kids. Open bounce sessions vary depending on the day's schedule, so check the website before going. Kids 6 and younger bounce in a separate area away from bigger kids that is loaded with all the same indoor bouncy fun, including traditional bounce houses and trampolines. There's even a toddler time just for the little ones, as well as Jump N Glow evening sessions for the bigger kids with, you guessed it, glow-in-the-dark bouncing and activities.
Bounce U — Oceanside
3495B Lawson Blvd.
Bounce U franchises have been popping up all over in recent years, and there are several on Long Island. Each has slightly different hours, programs, and rates, so check out the website for details. Times and days for the open-bounce sessions vary. Reservations are required and should be made as far in advance as possible, especially for the popular family bounce nights and cosmic bounce sessions for kids of all ages.
Dreamnastics — Great Neck
Great Neck Gardens shopping center
24A Great Neck Rd., second floor
This gym offers open play when there are no scheduled classes. Times are listed on the bottom row of its winter schedule here. Call for availability as parties can preempt scheduled open-play sessions.
Fun Station USA — Lynbrook
40 Rocklyn Ave.
This play space boasts laser tag, video games, roller coaster and flight simulators, bumper cars, a play maze, and more, making it perfect for kids of all ages. Winter hours are Friday from 3 to 9pm and Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 9pm. Rides close one hour prior to closing time and all times are subject to change, so be sure to check its website before you go. Socks are required.
Gymboree — Multiple locations
This play and music place has several locations on Long Island and is open for ages 0 to 5. The class curriculum is age-specific and designed to help develop cognitive, physical and social skills. Membership gets you a weekly schedule of classes, as well as open-play days and times. Contact information for Nassau facilities is below.
2888 Long Beach Rd.
1504 Old Country Rd.
100 Woodbury Rd.
Le Play Café — Bellmore
2473B Merrick Rd.
This venue is just what a parent of a toddler or preschooler needs — a place to sit, relax, check e-mail or visit with friends while children play at dress-up or try out a play on stage. There is a small play-kitchen area, a slide, and a few ride-ons as well. Call if you plan to come in late afternoon as it sometimes closes early if there are no guests. Be sure to check out its website for information on enrichment classes, which include baby ballet and baby fitness. Admission is $10 per child, $5 per sibling, and free for adults. Socks are required to enter the play area.
RELATED: Kids' Sports Centers and Indoor Playgrounds on Long Island
Liddle Bites offers plenty to do in a cozy space. Photo by Lisa Fogarty.
Liddle Bites Play Cafe — Long Beach
132 E. Park Ave.
This intimate and extensive play space is perfect for babies, crawlers and preschoolers. It features life-size dollhouses and stores for imaginative play, and everything from dolls to trains, blocks, puzzles, books, and art supplies. Parents are encouraged to order lunch or an early dinner from one of the many nearby restaurants, and snacks and drinks are available at reasonable prices. Admission is $10 per child and $7 for crawlers; adults are free. Season passes at a discounted rate are available. Socks are required in the play space.
Long Island Children's Museum — Garden City
11 Davis Ave.
Admission includes the indoor play areas, Tot Spot and Climb It. At Tot Spot, kids can play in the pretend train, grocery store or construction areas, as well as wiggle, jump, slide and play. Climb It offers two-stories of crawling and climbing adventures. Recommended for ages 4 and older; minimum height of 42 inches. The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday 10am to 5pm and memberships are available.
The ball cannon delights youngsters at Long Island Laser Bounce in Levittown.
Long Island’s Laser Bounce — Levittown
2710 Hempstead Tpke.,
This large indoor complex has something for kids of all ages. There are rooms filled with bouncers, a big ball-filled climbing area with ball cannons, laser-tag arena, a full-size game arcade and a stuff-a-bear station. Unless already booked, all activities are available for parties or public play. The facility tries each week to list on its website times when each area is open to the public, but it advises calling first.
Imaginations can run wild at Once Upon a Treetop in Plainview. Photo by Lisa Fogarty.
Once Upon a Treetop Plainview
151 Dupont St.
This large indoor space focuses on creating settings for imaginative play. It is probably best for younger children, but older kids, especially if part of a mixed-age group, can have fun as well. The space is organized as if it were a little town or city, with rooms set up as a post office, restaurant, school, veterinary office, grocery store, construction zone, and more. Kids can run from room to room or ride little cars and bikes. There is a climbing tree house on the property with a slide. Parents must supervise children, but staff are available to encourage imaginative play. Admission is $12 for children who can walk and $6 for crawlers, who must wear socks.
Pump It Up
This bouncy center franchise offers pop-in playtimes as well as bounce-and-art camps and structured play classes. Its two Long Island locations are detailed below.
Pump It Up — Great Neck
225 Community Drive, Suite 250
This center has open-bounce sessions on various dates and times, so check its event calendar. It also features a wind tunnel and hosts glow-bounce and supervised drop-off, parent’s-night-out sessions. Any age, even adults, can bounce, but there is a height requirement of 34 inches, and socks are required.
Pump It Up — Plainview
135 Dupont St.
This venue offers pop-in play for ages 2-7 at various times listed on its calendar. It also offers sessions for children with special needs. These sensory jump events require tickets in advance. Occupational therapists are welcome to accompany a child.
Tots on Track — Massapequa Park
4871 Merrick Rd.
Owned by two special-education specialists, Tots on Track offers open-play sessions seven days a week for babies and children up to age 6. They will love the gym, toys, and opportunities to dance and create. The space also offers classes that include Special Needs Sing and Sign and baby ballet. Register online and check its open-play schedule before you go.
Top photo: Kids will delight in the two-story climbing structure at the Long Island Children's Museum. Unless otherwise noted, photo courtesy of the venues.
This post was updated for 2017.