Play Right: Fun Spring Break Ideas for Kids

New Jammies Whale PJ BeachSpring is nearly here, and New Jammies families are looking to get away and enjoy fun with the kids. Whether it’s an indoor water park to make a splash or skiing in the mountains, family-friendly Spring Break destinations can be a great way to recharge for a new season.

From coast to coast, there are fun Spring break activities the whole family can enjoy. In the Smokey Mountains of Tennessee, there’s a new 66,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art indoor waterpark with a glass roof to allow the sun to shine in for year-round family entertainment. Wilderness at the Smokies, in Sevierville, Tennessee, is the state’s largest waterpark resort. It houses several indoor water and tube slides, a 10,000-square-foot wave pool, spraying water features, a five-story family raft ride, and indoor/outdoor hot spa. Stay at the Stone Hill Lodge or River Lodge to make a convenient trek over to the Wilderness at the Smokies water park. Don’t forget a waterproof camera to capture the family fun while making Spring Break memories for a lifetime.

Picked AAA’s top Spring Break travel destination in 2015, Orlando, Florida, offers families so many options for enjoyment, it might be hard to pick just one or two. “It’s clear that travelers are seeking warm weather destinations this spring as they look to escape the cold after a particularly harsh winter,” said Bill Sutherland, AAA Senior Vice President of Travel and Publishing. “In addition to great domestic destination getaways, cruises, tours and vacation packages to international destinations such as Mexico and the Caribbean are also popular vacations this spring.”

With so many choices out there, especially in Orlando, our editorial staff at New Jammies recommends ordering the free Orlando Vacation Planning Kit for information on hotels, attractions, events, and maps. Orlando is of course world famous for the happiest place on earth, aka Walt Disney World. But the Florida city is also home to Universal Orlando Resort, SeaWorld, and other theme parks geared to family vacationing. There are also attractions such as water parks, indoor skydiving, alligator spotting at Gator Land, dinner theaters, and off-road adventures perfect for the whole family.

Paddleboating in the Tidal Basin. Photo by: Destination DC

Springtime paddleboating in the Tidal Basin. Photo by: Destination DC

Also on AAA’s list of top Spring Break destination list is the nation’s capitol, Washington, D.C. There’s no better place in America to teach kids about our nation’s founding and enjoy the beautiful landmarks and cultural attractions that make this country so great. Make sure to visit the massive National Mall open park in downtown Washington between the Lincoln Memorial and the U.S. Capitol. The White House, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool, Jefferson Pier, National World War II Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial, and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial are all on the must-see sight-seeing tour in D.C.

For educational, kid-friendly fun, the nation’s capitol is museum central. The city houses the National Museum of Natural History on the National Mall (the most visited museum), National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of African Art, National Museum of American History, National Museum of the American Indian, the Sackler and Freer galleries, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Arts and Industries Building, S. Dillon Ripley Center, and the Smithsonian Institution Building, also known as “The Castle.” For travelers on a budget, visit this helpful Washington D.C. tourist’s guide for 100 free (and almost free) things to do.

Need a refreshing jaunt at high elevation? A trip to the Rocky Mountains provides some late-season Spring Break skiing and western exploring for families. Denver, Colorado, the state’s capitol appropriately named the Mile High City, has a variety of museums and attractions kids of all ages will love. Check out the Children’s Museum of Denver, Denver Museum of Nature and Sciences, Downtown Aquarium, the Just for Fun Family Center at the Denver Art Museum, Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum, Butterfly Pavilion, and Dinosaur Ridge next to the famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Head west to the mountains for skiing, snowshoeing and snowmobiling in such beautiful Colorado destinations as Breckenridge, Winter Park, Durango, Telluride, Beaver Creek, Steamboat Springs, Vail, and Aspen, just to name a few.

Family fun in the Hot Springs

Family fun in the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool

For a truly family-friendly experience, visit one of New Jammies’ favorite spots, Glenwood Springs, Colorado. Enjoy a soak and swim in the world’s largest hot springs pool or outdoor activities at the Colorado gem Sunlight Mountain Resort at this award-winning Rocky Mountain town on the state’s Western Slope. Ride the exciting downhill alpine coaster and tour and explore one of America’s top 10 caves, according to USA Today, at the Glenwood Caverns Adventure Park high atop Iron Mountain.

Most of all this spring, have fun!

Play Right: Summertime activities for kids

Back to school may be just around the corner, but there are still enough active summer days for New Jammies kids to enjoy fun activities, learn, and play – indoors and out.

Airplane-Pajamas-Boys-Organic-Cotton-PJ-Short

New Jammies airplane pajamas

From airplanes and history to art and Native American culture, the topics museums showcase across the U.S. could keep a family busy, while learning, all summer long. Kids are like sponges, taking in knowledge as fast as they can, and the nation’s museums and interactive learning centers are perfect ways to teach our youth and have fun.

According to the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), approximately 850 million visits are made annually to American museums. That’s more than the attendance for all major league sporting events and theme parks combined (483 million in 2011).

“Museums tell important stories by collecting, preserving, researching and interpreting objects, living specimens and historical records,” says the AAM’s website. “Museums help communities better understand and appreciate cultural diversity.”

For kids who love animals, zoos and aquariums are ideal options for boys and girls to learn about different species and ecosystems, and enjoy a fun, up-close look at the Animal Kingdom. The Association of Zoos and Aquariums website is a great resource for parents and caregivers to learn what zoos are doing around the country to help teach kids in a family-friendly environment.

Just this summer, Tiki the Giraffe turned 25 at the Oakland Zoo in California, the Indianapolis Zoo opened a new, state-of the-art orangutan center in Indiana, and tiny red panda cubs were born at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia. Get out and see what the country’s zoos have to offer in 2014.

Mermaid-Pajamas-Girls-Cotton-PJ-Short-Set

New Jammies mermaid pajamas

From outdoor water parks to a sprinkler in the backyard, getting wet in the summer sun guarantees a refreshing activity option for kids in the summertime. Going back to the idea that children are sponges, they can learn to swim with lessons at public pools and through youth swim clubs. They can perfect their back strokes in the country’s host of lakes, swimming holes, and rivers. Just remember, safety first, so wear a portable flotation device (PFD), also known as a life jacket, or water wings and flotation devices as needed.

Of course being outdoors in the sun, no matter what the activity, requires proper sun shading and protection to prevent sun damage and melanoma. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a significant part of a person’s lifetime sun exposure occurs before the age of 18.

WHO suggests these sun protection tips:

  • Limit time in the midday sun. The sun’s UV rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. If possible, limit sun exposure during these hours.
  • Watch for the UV index. This helps in planning outdoor activities to prevent overexposure to the sun’s rays when the UV Index predicts exposure levels of moderate or above.
  • Use shade wisely. Seek shade when UV rays are the most intense. Shade structures such as trees, umbrellas or canopies don’t always offer complete sun protection. Remember the shadow rule: “Watch your shadow – Short shadow, seek shade!”
  • Wear protective clothing. A hat with a wide brim offers good sun protection for eyes, ears, face, and back of the neck. Sunglasses with 99 to 100 percent UV-A and UV-B protection greatly reduce eye damage from sun exposure. Tightly woven, loose-fitting clothes provide additional protection from the sun.
  • Use sunscreen. Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen of SPF 15+ liberally and re-apply every two hours, or after working, swimming, playing or exercising outdoors.

Venture out there with the kids this summer and play right, so they sleep tight, in their 100% pure, natural organic cotton New Jammies pajamas. Have fun!