Northwest Arkansas Indoor Family Fun Guide: Best places for kids to play inside

Whether the weather is too cold or too hot (or too rainy!) in Northwest Arkansas, we mamas need a handy guide for things to do with the kids. We know how stir crazy everyone can get when we’re all cooped up together for too long.

Lucky for us, there are lots of fun things to choose from in NWA.

This Indoor Family Fun Guide is sponsored by Fast Lane Entertainment, which has TONS of options for indoor play. Located at 1117 N. Dixieland in Lowell, Fast Lane has 70,000 square feet of fun, including:

  • Bowling
  • Arcade games
  • Huge climbing gym (with kids eat free specials!)
  • Hologate virtual reality games
  • Great food/drink options
  • Weekly specials
  • Birthday/holiday parties

Here are some other ideas for indoor play:

Make the most of our museums. The Amazeum Children’s Museum features approximately 50,000 square feet of exhibit and learning spaces inside for all ages. They also have lots of camps and special events.

Crystal Bridges is perfect for a fun indoor activity that also enriches. There are permanent and traveling exhibits to check out in addition to classes, workshops, a special space for kids to explore their artistic talents and lots of events.

If you’re into history, there’s the Museum of Native American History in Bentonville and Shiloh Museum of Ozark History in Springdale. If you visit the Walmart Museum in Bentonville (which has some fun, old-fashioned candy and toys available for purchase), be sure to stop by the Spark Cafe next door for ice cream. There’s also the Rogers Historical Museum, the Clinton House Museum in Fayetteville, the Lowell Historical Museum, the Arkansas Air and Military Museum and Headquarters House Museum.

Skate it off. Ice skate or swim indoors at the Jones Center. There are also some roller skating options in NWA, including Starlight Skatium in Fayetteville and Great Day Skate Place in Bentonville.

Jumpity jump. Jump inside at HighRise in Rogers or Altitude Trampoline Park in Fayetteville. Lots of fun for different age groups.

Create a masterpiece. You and the kids can make art together at Imagine Studios, Painting with a Twist, Junque 2 Jewels and Community Creative Center. If you want to bring the art to you, the Traveling Art Teacher is a state certified art teacher brings painting parties to you. Art & Soul Studios in Rogers has added some fun acrylic pouring classes.

Climb higher. To keep the kids from climbing the walls at home, you can take them to Lewis & Clark in Springdale, the Ozark Climbing Gym in Springdale and (soon!) the new Climb Bentonville space. Fun City Pizza in Springdale (next to Babies ‘n Beyond) has arcade games, big slides and tunnels for the kids to play on and indoor mini golf.

For the retro arcade player. Arkadia Retrocade in Fayetteville (Evelyn Hills Shopping Center) has vintage arcade games and is great for tweens and teens.

Binge on books. There are so many great libraries in Northwest Arkansas, including Fayetteville, Rogers, Springdale  and Bentonville. They all have special events, story times and, of course, lots of books and movies to check out.

Or visit on of Northwest Arkansas’ great bookstores. There are several quirky favorites in Fayetteville: Nightbird Books, Dickson Street Bookshop or the Curious Book Shoppe on Block Street. There’s also Barnes & Noble in Fayetteville and Rogers.

At Kindness and Joy Toys in Fayetteville, they have story and craft times, along with a place to test out toys in the back of the store.

Accept a mission. Play laser tag, inside or out, at super-cool Modern Mission. They’ve got outdoor indoor laser tag or an indoor battlefield to tackle in Fayetteville. For a different type of mission, there are some fun escape rooms here: Bolt, Ozark Escape, the Escapeopolis Project and NWA Escape Room.

Make it to the movies. You should check out the reclining seats at the newly-renovated Fiesta Square and Razorback Malco theatres, both in Fayetteville. And have you visited the new Skylight Cinema in Benonville? You can eat dinner while you watch a movie there.

Flip out. Many of the gyms have open play times. Try Gymnastics Joe’s at the Northwest Arkansas Mall or The Little Gym in Rogers.

PlayStrong Pediatric Therapy has open gym Monday-Thursday at 9-10 a.m. for $5. PlayWorks Pediatric Therapy & Play Gym has open gym on Fridays from 9am-noon. You can do $5 for an hour or $7 for 9-noon.

We’ll keep adding to this list along the way. If there’s an inside play area you love (that we missed!) please send us the info to mamas{at}nwamotherlode{dot}com.

Click here to visit Fast Lane Entertainment, our Indoor Family Fun Guide sponsor! Find them here on Facebook to stay up-to-date on weekly specials and special events!