Top 20 Places to Take Kids in and Around Fairfield County | Kids Out and About Fairfield County, CT

Fairfield County's online guide to everything for kids, teens, & families!

Top 20 Places to Take Kids in and Around Fairfield County

award_fairfieldcounty.jpg

2015 Survey of Connecticut's Best for Places to take Fairfield County Kids

Fairfield County and the surrounding area is rich in fun events and exciting places. It was hard for our readers to select their favorites from the hundreds of choices! The venues listed below are wildly popular with kids and families in our area. But don’t miss out on ALL the other wonderful places as well! Browse through our site and discover lots more to do!To stay on top of ALL of the opportunities for kids in our area, please make sure to sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter!



1. Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo creates wonderfully wild experiences for children and families all year 'round. Located on 52 beautiful acres in Bridgeport, the state’s only zoo features more than 300 animals representing primarily North and South American species. Explore our South American Rainforest with free-flight aviary, the New England Farmyard, Victorian Greenhouse, and prairie dog exhibit with "pop-up" viewing areas. Visitors may enjoy a bite at the Peacock Café, eat in the Picnic Grove, and take a spin on the colorful indoor carousel.

 

2. Downtown Cabaret Theatre

Professional Musical Theatre & Entertainment for Children and Adults in Bridgeport. Since the Theatre’s official opening with VAUDEVILLE TROUPE on February 27, 1976, over one million adults and children have enjoyed musical productions in the unique “Bring Your Own Picnic” cabaret atmosphere. 

 

3. Stepping Stones Museum for Children

At Stepping Stones Museum for Children, the hands-on exhibits and educational programs engage, inspire and delight every child — as well as countless parents and caregivers.

 

4. Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk

The nationally recognized aquarium focuses on the fascinating marine life in Long Island Sound and its watershed, including prowling sharks, curious seals, rambunctious river otters, stately sea turtles, pulsing jellyfish and thousands of other animals. The Aquarium also offers: educational programs, including public study cruises out onto the Sound; changing special exhibits; and Connecticut's largest IMAX movie theater, with a screen that’s six stories tall! The not-for-profit attraction is the centerpiece of the popular South Norwalk (or “SoNo”) neighborhood, with fun shops, nightclubs and restaurants.

 

5. Bellarmine Museum of Art

The Bellarmine Museum of Art (BMA), located on the Fairfield University campus, has welcomed over 20,000 visitors since opening in the fall of 2010.  The BMA strives to promote education in the visual arts through community outreach, free admission and free public programming.  The BMA hosts (6) Family Day events on select Saturdays from 1-4 p.m. throughout the academic year geared to children ages 4-12.  Designed to complement our permanent collection and temporary exhibitions, Family Days educate children – and parents alike! – through arts and crafts, age-appropriate gallery talks and story time in the museum.  Family Days are always free and open to the public! 

 

6. Bridgeport Bluefish

Family-friendly professional baseball right here in Fairfield County! A member of the Liberty Division of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.

 

7. Mystic Aquarium

As New England’s hands-on aquarium, Mystic Aquarium offers guests a variety of up-close encounters with a wide range of marine animals, including endangered African penguins and New England’s only beluga whales. Dive below the sunlit seas in Titanic – 12,450 Feet Below, the aquarium’s newest exhibit full of captivating imagery, breathtaking recreations, emotional soundscapes, hands-on activities and thrilling entertainment that transport you to the moment and inspire your course for exploration and discovery.

 

8. Chelsea Piers CT

Chelsea Piers Connecticut is a 465,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art sports complex with world-class facilities, expert instruction, and the most exciting sports curriculum available. With an Olympic-sized pool, a “Splash Zone” water play park, 12 Squash courts, seven Tennis courts, baseball, softball, and gymnastics training centers, a brand new 65,000-square-foot Fitness Center, two ice rinks, a Field House with a 100-yard indoor turf field for soccer, lacrosse, and field hockey, basketball and volleyball courts, and more, Chelsea Piers is your home for youth sports in Fairfield County!

 

9. Connecticut Science Center

With 150 hands-on exhibits, a state-of-the-art 3D digital theater, four educational labs, plus daily programs and events, there is endless exploration.

 

10. Lake Compounce

New England's Family Theme Park. It is the oldest continuously-operating amusement park in North America, having its genesis more than 165 years ago in 1846!

 

11. Discovery Museum and Planetarium

Connecticut's premiere science museum and planetarium is right in Bridgeport! It is a hands-on interactive museum for all ages with over sixty-five exhibit areas.

 

12. Captain's Cove Seaport

Since 1982, Captain’s Cove Seaport has grown from a vacant lot and a handful of slips to one of Connecticut’s premier tourist attractions and seaport complexes. Located on Historic Black Rock Harbor.

 

13. Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History

If you want to see real dinosaur fossils, come to the Peabody! Towering over the Great Hall of Dinosaurs is the 150-million-year-old skeleton of Brontosaurus, as well as Stegosaurus and Triceratops. This family-friendly museum also has Egyptian mummies, primates, birds, minerals and meteorites. Kids love the Discovery Room for its touchable fossils and live critters. Through January 3, Samurai and the Culture of Japan’s Last Peace features shimmering swords, imposing armor and the real story behind the legend.

 

14. Audubon Society

The mission of the Connecticut Audubon Society is to conserve Connecticut’s environment through science-based education and advocacy focused on the state’s bird populations and their habitats. Locations and resources throughout the state.

 

15. Bijou Theatre

A symposium for film, theatre, art, comedy and music. This theater in Bridgeport features film, live theatre, youth summer stage, comedy, music, and more.

 

16. Essex Steam Train and Riverboat

Run by the Valley Railroad Co. Essex Steam Train hosts CT River Valley tours, parties, mystery dinner trains, North Pole Express. Essex Steam Train & Riverboat’s 2½-hour journey begins at the historic 1892 Essex Station for a 12-mile, narrated round-trip into the heart of the unspoiled Connecticut River Valley – designated “one of the last great places on earth” by the Nature Conservancy.

 

17. SportsCenter of Connecticut

A unique family entertainment experience in Shelton with a driving range, mini golf, lazer tag, fun bowl, arcade, batting cages, and the only double-decker ice rink for hockey and public skating. We are a great place for birthday parties!

 

18. Quassy Amusement Park

Quassy Amusement Park, is an amusement and waterpark in Middlebury, Connecticut, USA. It has 22 rides on its 20 acres. Quassy is considered "one of the last of the old-time trolley parks." In addition to a variety of fun-filled classic and newer theme park rides, Quassy also has a water park for the whole family to enjoy. We specialize in catering private parties for school, church, camp, sporting & corporate events.

 

19. My Local Library

Of course, the libraries in Fairfield County are not really ONE place, but MANY places... but it's important to emphasize how valuable libraries are for family learning and fun. The libraries in our area are wonderful about posting their events to the KidsOutAndAbout calendar so you always can get ideas for free things to do with your kids that celebrate education and imagination. KidsOutAndAbout.com takes this opportunity to salute the wonderful children's librarians who serve our community with such dedication.

 

20. Bridgeport Sound Tigers

The Bridgeport Sound Tigers are a professional ice hockey team playing in the American Hockey League. It has been the AHL affiliate of the National Hockey League's New York Islanders. The team plays at their home games at the Webster Bank Arena.

 

2015 Winners in Special Categories

In the second part of our survey, we asked readers to select their favorites in six categories. Here were their choices.

Favorite Place to Have Fun INSIDE

KOAAFavoriteSealsm.jpg

SportsCenter of Connecticut

A unique family entertainment experience in Shelton with a driving range, mini golf, lazer tag, fun bowl, arcade, batting cages, and the only double-decker ice rink for hockey and public skating. We are a great place for birthday parties!

Favorite Place to Have Fun OUTSIDE

KOAAFavoriteSealsm.jpg

Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo creates wonderfully wild experiences for children and families all year 'round. Located on 52 beautiful acres in Bridgeport, the state’s only zoo features more than 300 animals representing primarily North and South American species. Explore our South American Rainforest with free-flight aviary, the New England Farmyard, Victorian Greenhouse, and prairie dog exhibit with "pop-up" viewing areas. Visitors may enjoy a bite at the Peacock Café, eat in the Picnic Grove, and take a spin on the colorful indoor carousel.

Favorite Kid-Friendly Museum

KOAAFavoriteSealsm.jpg

Stepping Stones Museum for Children

At Stepping Stones Museum for Children, the hands-on exhibits and educational programs engage, inspire and delight every child — as well as countless parents and caregivers.
MaritimeAquariumLogo_0.jpg

Favorite Performing Arts

KOAAFavoriteSealsm.jpg

 Downtown Cabaret Theatre

Professional Musical Theatre & Entertainment for Children and Adults in Bridgeport. Since the Theatre’s official opening with VAUDEVILLE TROUPE on February 27, 1976, over one million adults and children have enjoyed musical productions in the unique “Bring Your Own Picnic” cabaret atmosphere. 

Favorite Kid-Friendly Farm

Jones Family Farms

Harvest your own strawberries, blueberries, pumpkins, and Christmas trees on a 400 acre farm in Shelton.

Favorite Nature Center

Audubon Society

Our mission is to conserve Connecticut’s environment through science-based education and advocacy focused on the state’s bird populations and their habitats. Locations throughout the state.



Favorite  Sports Team

KOAAFavoriteSealsm.jpg

Bridgeport Bluefish

Family-friendly professional baseball right here in Fairfield County! A member of the Liberty Division of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.
Stamford Museum & Nature Center

 

Favorite Arts Education

Milford Fine Arts Council Center for the Arts

Every year, the MAC presents community theatre, live music concerts with international, regional and local talent, exhibitions, classes, workshops, films and lectures.

Favorite Sports Education

YMCA

The various branches of Y's throughout the Fairfield County area offer sports education programs in most regionally-competitive sports for youth.

YMCAgreenlogo_0.jpg

Favorite Family-Friendly Festival

Norwalk Oyster Festival

The Norwalk Seaport Association sponsors this popular annual festival held in September. The festival is held at Veteran’s Park, adjacent to Norwalk Harbor on Seaview Avenue in Norwalk.

 

 

 

Tags