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10 Under $10: Indoor Play Places in the Newburyport Area

By Emily Cowan, Newburyport.Com Correspondent

indoor Play Places, Newburyport MA

No spring fever here – we’ve compiled a list of low-cost local indoor play places to take your young ones to get the wiggles out.

Harmony Natural Learning Center in Newbury hosts both morning and afternoon open-playtimes for ages 7 and under throughout the winter months. Stocked with simple activities that feature natural materials, Harmony offers a “unique play environment intentionally structured to minimize the adult role in leading and guiding play.”

Newburyport’s Joppa Flats Education Center, part of the Massachusetts Audubon Society, offers a wide range of programming for ages 3 and up, including a year-round “Imagine, Sing & Learn” series for ages 3-6 and a giant saltwater touch tank in summer. If the weather cooperates, you can cross the street to walk the path that hugs the airfield and then heads through a thicket toward historic Spencer-Peirce-Little Farm. About three miles away at Rough Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary in Rowley, you can explore more Mass Audubon trails and try to spot some of the area’s birds and small animals.

Ipswich Museumone of the great indoor play places for the area, has just opened a new model-train exhibit. It also offers hosts monthly homeschooler workshops for ages 6-12 that range from age-appropriate explorations of the museum’s collections to walking tours of Ipswich. Contact educator@ipswichmuseum.org for information on upcoming workshops.

All That Cheer and Tumble in Amesbury offers an open gym time most Tuesday mornings (check for schedule). The Imagination Stationz program features sensory activities, dramatic play, and an obstacles course.

The visitor’s center at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge in Newburyport offers a kid’s story hour for ages 3-5 on Monday mornings plus free movie screenings as part of its twice-monthly “Kids’ Conservation Cinema” series. Download a monthly calendar of events from PRNWR’s website.

Ipswich Birth to Three Family Center hosts a popular open playtime for young children, among many other programs for kids and families. Classes are free for residents of Ipswich and Essex and with a suggested donation of $6 for non-residents.

Seacoast United Admirals offers a weekday-morning PlayTime program for under-5s at its indoor recreation facility in Amesbury. Season-long memberships available.

The Do Drops playgroup for ages 4 and under is the Newbury Town Library’s best-kept secret. This freewheeling, twice-weekly playtime runs yearlong in the library’s Community Room. (Click here for schedule.)

Preschool Open Gym for ages 2-5 at the Newburyport Youth Services Rec Center offers a weekly opportunity to get the wiggles out in a spacious gymnasium with balls, mats, and plenty of room to run around.

Buddhaful Souls Yoga Studio in Rowley welcomes toddlers and their caregivers for a drop-in Friday mom-and-me yoga session ($10/toddler), and both the Rowley Public Library and the Salisbury Public Library host free kids’ yoga classes.

We hope you find this list of suggestions helpful when in search of fun indoor play places in the Newburyport area.

Visit the websites above for more details or – better yet – check the Macaroni Kid events calendar, where you can find ALL of these programs listed in one place!

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