Looking for something new to do with the kids or even a place to host a child’s birthday party? Check out the Lakeside Nature Center located in Swope Park. If you or your kids love animals, then this is a must do. My nephew (who loves anything related to the outdoors) recently celebrated his 7th birthday here, and most at the party had never even heard of this place before, including me. It’s a hidden gem. There is so much for kids to see when it comes to learning about local Missouri wildlife. There were snakes, fish, turtles, birds and a lot more. It is FREE to walk around and explore the different exhibits. I’m a kid at heart, so I was mesmerized the moment I walked in. My favorite part was seeing the two Bald Eagles or watching the rabbits eat (they’re super cute!!). The best part was learning that they acquire all of their creatures through rescuing. If someone finds an injured bird (must be native to Missouri), they can bring it here as it’s the second largest wildlife rehabilitation program in Missouri. The animals you’ll find on display were often those who couldn’t be released back into the wild, so now they are being used to educate kids and adults. I hear there is plenty to see and do outdoors, but since it was January we kept to the stuff inside. We were also lucky to have a special program led by one of their volunteers where we got to learn more about an owl, snake and opossum one-on-one. The kids even had the chance to pet them (if they wanted to).
So if you are looking for something to do on a weekend or over a break from school, definitely check this place out. It will keep kids busy and make parents happy because they can learn while having fun.
They even offer some great programs for a small fee. Check out: http://lakesidenaturecenter.org/programs.html
Lakeside Nature Center
4701 E Gregory Boulevard
Kansas City, MO 64132
Open 9-4 Tuesday-Sunday