Winter is a magical time to spend outdoors, but sometimes, you might want a warm (or dry) break from the weather. Flint and Genesee County are full of indoor attractions that are perfect for some winter family fun. Add some of these attractions to your winter bucket list!
Family-Friendly Winter Indoor Attractions
No matter how old your kids are, you’ll be able to find fun indoor things to do throughout Flint and Genesee County during the winter season. Here are some of our top recommendations — from physical activities to educational fun.
Everyone is invited to DEFY Flint, a whole new trampoline park experience that encourages kids and adults to forget about their limits and push themselves to new heights. In fact, the trampolines are built to increase how much time you spend in the air.
Test your skills on the Stunt Fall platform, Wall Tramps, Ninja Course, High-End Air Track, and Parkour section. DEFY also has Basketball on trampolines and Extreme Dodgeball surrounded by trampolines.
Extreme Indoor Kart Racing
In Clio, Michigan, Extreme Indoor Kart Racing is the place for thrill-seekers to get their adrenaline pumping. It has the biggest indoor kart track in Michigan at a quarter-mile, and the karts can reach speeds up to 40 mph. In addition, there’s an arcade and concession with pizza, candy, pop, and more.
Flint Iceland Arenas
If you still want a taste of the outdoors but don’t want to be outside, Flint Iceland Arenas offers ice skating and turf sports. You can think of it as an all-in-one sports and entertainment center.
The ice rink has open skates for families, alongside skating classes and hockey programs. And, the turf field is available for baseball, softball, soccer, and lacrosse.
The Crystal Fieldhouse in Burton, Michigan is another ice arena where you can take your family for ice skating. The arena hosts Stick N Puck time slots so that all ages can sharpen their skating and hockey stick, passing, and shooting skills too.
On top of that, your family can play Broomball, which is hockey but without any ice skates — you play on the ice in your shoes instead. If you need a break, the whole family can grab a bite at the on-site Skaters Bar & Grill.
Families who prefer roller skating over ice skating will have a great time at Skateland Arena in Mt. Morris, Michigan. The rink has been a center for entertainment in Genesee County since 1961. Along with roller skating, this venue has laser tag, an arcade, and a full concession stand.
Rollhaven Skate Center
Another roller skating fun center, Rollhaven Skate Center is a family-owned rink with open skate sessions throughout the week and weekend. The fun center has a Laser Storm adventure that uses advanced technology and equipment, and there’s a multilevel Bounce House.
Spymaker Escape Rooms, VR, & Axe Throwing
Spymaker offers a variety of experiences across Genesee County. In Flint, Michigan, you can test your problem-solving abilities and wits in an escape room. In Burton Michigan, you can experience simulated gaming in Virtual Reality or the thrill of Axe Throwing in themed sessions.
Bowl Flint | B’s Bowling & Richfield Bowl
For some fun family competition, head to one of the Bowl Flint Bowling Centers — B’s Bowling and Richfield Bowl. These independently owned, modern bowling alleys even feature kid-friendly bumper bowling lanes. There’s also Cosmic Bowling with black lights, disco lights, laser lights, and runway lights.
Additionally, the centers host Great New Year’s Eve Family Celebrations with all-you-can-bowl packages during the day and a Countdown Late Night Party that includes pop and pizza to ring in the new year.
Huckleberry Junction Playhouse Theater
In Genesee, Michigan, the Huckleberry Junction Playhouse Theatre offers lasting memories through character performances — like Daniel & The Dixie Diggers, an animated river boat band.
This venue also has hundreds of redemption games for which kids can trade tickets for prizes. Plus, there’s plenty of pizza and pop.
For somersault play, EPIC Gymnastics is one of the most well-equipped facilities in the Flint area. It has programs for all ages and skill levels, and it offers Open Gym days throughout the month. You can check its Facebook page for the open-to-public dates.
Flint Children’s Museum
At the Flint Children’s Museum, kids between 2 and 10 years will love all of the hands-on learning experiences, such as the Magnet Wall, Raceways, Augmented Reality Sandbox, and Simple Circuits.
Also among the more than 40 exhibits are themes such as Performing Arts, Health & Fitness, Our Town (a miniature town with a grocery store, post office, etc.), Transportation Alley, and Top Spot for toddlers.
There’s also the Discovery Zone with rotating exhibits every three to four months and the Sproutside outdoor area that gives children a secure natural area to experience the great outdoors or have a family picnic lunch.
Sloan Museum of Discovery
The Sloan Museum of Discovery is a paradise for kids that preserves more than 150 years of history about Flint Michigan and Genesee County. Because of that, its collection of artifacts is very diverse. And, the museum has a vehicle gallery that parents may drool over.
After a renovation and expansion that was completed in 2022, the museum has four new galleries:
- The History Gallery features inclusive stories.
- The Hagerman Street Early Childhood Learning Gallery has an interactive neighborhood for kids to explore.
- The Durant Gallery Vehicle Gallery is full of rare concept and vintage cars.
- The Discovery Hall Science Gallery offers hands-on learning in all aspects of science.
While the kids are playing, parents can enjoy a hot or cold coffee at the Coffee Beanery Cafe to keep up their energy. The cafe also has handcrafted panini sandwiches, hot chocolate, tea, pop, and more.
Across from the Sloan Museum, the Longway Planetarium is the best place to watch a show about the night sky. Michigan stars aren’t the only thing that you’ll learn about, though. There’s a classic rock light show, immersive film experiences, cultural astronomy show, and trivia nights.
You can buy combo tickets for the Sloan Museum of Discovery and Longway Planetarium. Both are part of the Flint Cultural Center.
Flint Public Library
If you’re looking for a quiet, relaxing day with a book, the Flint Public Library is the right place to go. But there’s more to the library than books. It has a lot of music CDs and DVDs, as well as learning tablets.
Plus, the library hosts Super Saturday Storytime events for pre-K and elementary school kids. During the holidays, it holds a special storytime with a holiday story reading. On top of that, the library hosts storytimes with yoga and other events throughout the year.
Do your kids love to read at home? Head to Totem Books for some souvenirs. In addition to new and used books of all kinds, the shop has new and used vinyl records, cassette tapes, CDs, and DVDs. There’s even collectible Flint memorabilia, candles, incense sticks, T-shirts, and more.
You can stop at the shop’s Cafe, too, for a handcrafted espresso, bubble tea, hot soup, pop, and sandwiches. The menu includes vegetarian options as well.
Great Genesee County Restaurants for Families
From breakfast to dinner, you’ll find several restaurants in Flint and Genesee County where families can enjoy fantastic meals. These are just a few of our favorites!
West Side Diner
Serving American eats, the West Side Diner is a fun spot to take your family for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. This throwback diner features 1950s decor with red booths and serves reasonably priced food — from omelets to burgers.
Golden Gate Restaurant
The Golden Gate Restaurant is popular for its fish and chips, as well as rice pudding. The restaurant is also known for its friendly staff and excellent service, so you’re sure to have a great meal when you stop here with your family.
When you’re looking for Flint flavor, head to Dom’s Diner. This diner was established in 2018 and serves homemade dishes all day. Its specialty, though, is the Dom Da Bomb — a double decker burger with bacon, an onion ring, and barbecue sauce.
Founded in 1987, Fenton House has been a staple for the community of Fenton, Michigan. The menu includes upscale pasta, entrees, wraps, burgers, sandwiches, and pizza. The restaurant has a full in-house bar with beer and wine, as well as a game room with fun arcade games.
For authentic and traditional Italian food, Italia Gardens is one of the best places. The restaurant owners have continued to use the same recipes since 1931.
Best of all, it has three locations — Flint, Davison, and Grand Blanc — so no matter which side of Genesee County you’re in, authentic Italian isn’t far away.
Since 1955, Luigi’s Restaurant has been baking some of the best thin-crust pizza in a brick oven. Also, the menu features sandwiches, pasta, and entrees, as well as drinks from the full bar. And, your family will be comfortable in the relaxed setting.
Located in a restored building in downtown Flint, Michigan, Blackstone’s Smokehouse serves some of the best barbecue in the state. On the menu, you’ll find jumbo smoked wings, brisket, sandwiches, burgers, and more. Parents can pair their meals with handcrafted cocktails.
Winter Family-Friendly Indoor Events
There are many Michigan winter events that you can attend, some of which are held indoors. Here are a few events in Flint that families will enjoy.
Second Saturday Sensory-Friendly Shows at Longway Planetarium
Every second Saturday of the month, the Longway Planetarium holds Sensory-Friendly Shows that are ideal for those with special needs and anyone who is sensitive to loud sounds.
Partially funded by the Genesee County Arts Education and Cultural Enrichment Millage, each Second Saturday show is different.
Flint Firebirds Hockey Game
All winter long, you have the opportunity to watch the Flint Firebirds fly across the ice in energetic matches at Dort Financial Center. Since 2015, dozens of the players on this junior ice hockey team have been drafted and signed into the National Hockey League.
Flint United Basketball Game
Part of The Basketball League, the Flint United Basketball Club plays professional games at Dort Financial Center. Families can have a lot of fun at one of these games, which can even be bonding experiences.
Best Flint Hotels for a Winter Family Getaway
To get the most out of your winter family getaway in Flint and Genesee County, book a weekend or full week stay at one of the area’s hotels. Best Western Plus in Flint and Comfort Inn & Suites in Fenton are two great places for families. You can look through this list of other hotels and lodging options too.