Things to do during Thanksgiving Break

Thanksgiving Break starts next week, and for some kids school will be out all week long.  That means all you parents are in need of some fun things to do – and QUICK!  Thankfully there are plenty of places to hang out during Fall Break that will keep the kids off the video games and your sanity intact.

Family Hike at Spring Lake
Violetti Rd, Santa Rosa
On Saturday November 19, kids will have fun learning about wildlife on new, naturalist-led hikes at the Environmental Discovery Center.  Families will be led on 1-hour hikes on the Shady Oaks Nature Trail near Spring Lake, beginning at 1 and 3pm.  All ages are welcome, though everyone should be walkers or easily carried in a backpack.
Cost for hike: $5 per family, $6 for parking (or included with annual parks membership)
Throughout the week, Spring Lake is also open for walking or biking around.  The easy trails make it fun for families to enjoy gorgeous scenery and views of nature while getting in some exercise.

Charles Schulz Museum
2301 Hardies Ln, Santa Rosa
The week starts off on Sunday November 20th with a birthday celebration for Charles Schulz. Everyone gets in free all day long! Museum Mondays for kids 1-5 will continue on November 21 with stories, games, art, crafts, and a fun movie. Friday & Saturday, November 25 & 26 will have storyteller Victoria Goring giving a live and interactive performance for kids of all ages. And throughout the week you can catch glimpses of the current and ongoing galleries of art and cartoons.
Fall/Winter 2011 Hours: 11am-5pm weekdays, 10am-5pm weekends, closed Tuesdays.

University of Sports
555 Rohnert Park Expressway, RP (near Target)
There’s no need for the kids to be cooped up all week long when University of Sports is holding several basketball camps for tweens and teens in several different locations. Beyond that, they hold fun activities in their sports clubs while you take a health break with a blood pumping workout. Not a member? For a limited time UofS is offering a trial membership of 10 free days – perfect for the upcoming fall break. Check out their website for more details.
Fall/Winter Hours: M-F 6a-1p & 4p-8:30p, Sat 7:30p-5p, Sun 8a-5p

Santa Rosa Gymnastics
2210 Bluebell Dr, Santa Rosa
Speaking of active kids, SR Gymnastics is holding camps on November 23rd and 25th, offering full or half days filled with gymnastics, rock wall climbing, crafts and games for kids 5-15. Call 525-1720 to register, or visit their website.
Full Camp Days: 8:30-3:30
Half Camp Days: 8:30a-11a or 12:30p-3:30p
Cost: $25-$95

Gaming at Hobbytown
171 N McDowell Blvd, Petaluma
Gamers will have plenty to do at Hobbytown Petaluma throughout the week with the nightly events going on in the popular hobby store. Monday (11/21) and Wednesday (11/23) evenings are gaming nights dedicated to Warhamer 40K or Flames of War. Tables will be set up to accommodate multi-army games as well as one-on-one battles. Tuesday (11/22) will be Yu Gi Oh! games. And Friday (11/25) is all about Magic the Gathering. Almost every day of the month holds a special event geared towards gamers or modelers, so be sure to check out their website for some fun things to do any day of the week.
Mon & Wed Gaming Hours: 7-9p
Tues & Fri Hours: 5-9p

Pirates, Legends, & Lore
Petaluma Museum – 20 Fourth St, Petaluma
Aye, ye scurvy bilgerats. Get ye to Petaluma Museum for the largest pirate exhibition in the Bay Area. View flintlocks, swords, a grappling hook, real cannon balls, plates from Sir Francis Drake, and more. Kids can make their own pirate flags, learn to tie different sailor’s knots, earn prizes, and a vast treasure chest of fun to be had. Plus, a real treasure hunt will unfold with a map that gives clues to a rare pirate coin worth $500. Exhibit open now till November 27th.
Cost: $5 adults, $3 children

Take in a cheap movie
Take advantage of the afternoon free time your kid suddenly has and go to a bargain matinee. Whether it’s Adam Sandler’s goofy “Jack and Jill”, the continuation of the Shrek saga with “Puss in Boots”, or the uplifting story of “Dolphin Tale”, most kids would jump at the chance to watch an afternoon movie. Want an even bigger deal? 3rd Street Cinemas is showing all their movies for only $3 each. Check them out at
For a list of all local theaters and their showtimes, go to

Cal Skate
6100 Commerce Blvd, Rohnert Park
Throw a sassy skate party! Cal Skate is holding extra sessions for all of Thanksgiving week. Monday will have Kids Skate (kids 10 & under plus their parents) from 9:30 to 11:30. $6 admission will include quad skate rental, inline skate rental is $4. And daily skate will be 12-5 all week long (except for Thanksgiving when they’re closed).

Need more ideas? Check out our list for indoor fun sure to keep your family entertained no matter what the weather looks like outside.

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