Fun Winter Break Activities in Hutchinson, KS
Winter break is a very busy two-week block of time, usually spent celebrating the holidays with family and friends and simply enjoying some downtime before the start of a new year. While parents and guardians are busy planning family get-togethers and figuring out holiday plans, it’s easy for kids to get into mischief or end up being couch potatoes glued to the TV.
To really make the most of your kids’ winter break, it’s worth planning out activities ahead of time to keep them active and their minds learning, but don’t forget to throw in some fun and memorable experiences, too.
We’ve compiled 7 different winter break activities to keep your kids happy, healthy, and engaged while they spend winter in Hutchinson.
1. Check in with your dentist before holiday snacking.
There’s never a good time for a toothache, but your kid coming to you with a sore tooth days before Christmas would certainly fall into the category of very bad timing. Kids of all ages (and adults, as well) should be keeping up with checkups every six months, but we recommend a check-in before all the holiday snacking during winter break begins.
Not only is this a great time for your dentist to remind your kids about proper oral hygiene, but it also gives your dentist a chance to catch a potential issue with your kids’ teeth before it becomes an emergency appointment during winter break.
2. Keep up with daily health habits all winter break.
The holiday season is synonymous with desserts, candies, baked goods, and a whole host of sweet treats and comfort foods; even a simple mug of hot chocolate can have kids consuming well over 30 grams of sugar. Increased sugar consumption means winter break is also the perfect time to reinstill daily health habits with our kids.
You’ll want to rehash a solid dental routine that’s age-appropriate for your kids. This includes going over proper brushing techniques, the use of mouthwash (if applicable), and daily flossing. It’s also a good idea to start the habit of taking daily vitamins, starting the day with a healthy breakfast, limiting screen time, and spending time being active outdoors when the weather permits.
3. Pick out a real pine at a Christmas tree farm.
Picking out a Christmas tree at a tree farm and going home to decorate it as a family can easily become an all-day activity. Artificial trees are popular, but nothing beats the look and piney scent of a real one; plus, it offers a wonderful opportunity to spend time with your kids.
You can find private Christmas tree sellers throughout Hutchinson, but there are also some dedicated Christmas tree farms you can visit that are about an hour’s drive away. Hop on Google and search for Christmas tree farms in Hutchinson or Wichita, and you’ll be able to choose from a couple different options.
4. Bundle up and visit local Christmas festivals.
No matter how old you are, there’s something timeless and exciting about Christmas festivals and parades. Hutchinson has a few of its own, including the annual Downtown Christmas Parade and the All Lit Up Christmas Light Tour.
Venture out further to Wichita and you’ll find even more exciting things to do, such as the Bradley Fair Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony, the Old Cowtown Victoria Christmas festival, and various craft fairs. To see what events would be more exciting for you and your family, visit the Holidays in Kansas Calendar of Events and search by your city.
5. Visit Nights Before Christmas at the Hutchinson Zoo.
A fun idea for a unique take on Christmas and winter holiday festivals is the Nights Before Christmas event at the Hutchinson Zoo. Nights Before Christmas occurs during the weekends in early December and takes place at the Hutchinson Zoo. Not only will the zoo be decked in festive decor, but there will also be a light show and a holiday train ride.
As you walk around the zoo, you’ll be able to enjoy the Christmas lights, drink hot cocoa, and snack on cookies. Younger kids will also love to meet Santa and get their picture taken. Nights Before Christmas is very affordable and runs from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. More information can be found on the Hutchinson Zoo’s website.
6. Pick out educational games and crafts to keep on hand.
One phrase that you’ll quickly get tired of hearing from your kids is, “I’m bored”. Rather than letting your kids lounge around watching television or playing video games, encourage them to keep their brains active with educational games and crafts.
You can find a whole host of board games and DIY games on Amazon or at a local store. Craft kits are also very common, and can be a fun way of teaching kids new subjects, such as chemistry. Only you know what games and crafts will appeal to your kids, so once you have an idea, hop online and see what you can find.
7. Organize play dates or overnighters with other parents.
Winter break may be a vacation for your kids, but it can feel like the opposite for busy parents who are overwhelmed with holiday planning. Chances are fellow parents of your kids’ friends feel the same.
A wonderful way to keep your kids active and social is to organize play dates or even sleepovers with other parents. This will undoubtedly be fun for the children and keep them busy, but it also gives you a chance to get some planning, baking, and decorating done, especially if your kids are still a bit too young to help out unsupervised.
Don’t let your kids waste their winter break by playing video games or lounging around the house. These 7 winter break activities are all great ideas to keep in mind for planning a productive winter break, but be sure to speak with your kids and see what other things they might like to do, as well. In fact, sitting down and creating your own winter break bucket list will help ensure you all have fun together as a family.