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Old 02-12-2013, 07:59 PM   #16
mrsklamc
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This is another different strokes for different folks thing but I would totally pass on the Newport Aquarium.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:04 PM   #17
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Last summer our kids were 1, 3 and 9- we spent 3 whole days at Cedar Point because they loved it so much.
They have three different kid areas now, two of which are full of rides you can go on with them. There are also shows all the time. In a way like Disney, if you look for the kid things and plan ahead a bit it can be great, but if you don't it's a
huge disappointing let down. Plus if you eat at the bbq place at the marina they take $10 off your bill in exchange for your parking receipt.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrsklamc
This is another different strokes for different folks thing but I would totally pass on the Newport Aquarium.
Or don't plan to be there the whole day! We took my son (3 at the time) and we thought it was some huge aquarium. It took us a little over an hour to tour. My son loved it though.. We just didn't have much else planned because we thought it would take longer.

The next day we went to the safari park in Port Clinton. Now this is a good 4hrs apart from the Newport aquarium. We only live about an hour away from Port Clinton. We had so much fun at the safari park. You can also get coupons on their website. Make sure you buy the carrots. They are like candy bars to the animals and it was too funny watching them fight over them. If you have. Sunroof in your car, make sure you open it. The Giraffes will take the carrots from the top of the car. Cedar point and the safari park are really close to each other. So if you do Cedar Point make sure you hit up the Safari Park as well.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:28 PM   #19
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If you're coming from Jersey I'd assume you are taking the 76 to 80 to 80/90 (I made that drive many times to visit friends in NJ). OTW, going across the northern part of OH through IN to Chicago. You will be no where near Cincinatti (the southern end of our state) nor near Indy (also the southern end). The cities in OH you will go through will include Cleveland, Sandusky and Toledo. The drive through OH to Chi-town is long, boring and flat. Sorry.

As other's mentioned Cleveland has some decent museums. The Rock Hall will bore your kids to tears, but the Science Center right next door is fun and good for kids. Cleveland also has a very nice zoo (which is right past downtown off the freeway and not at all hard to find). We are the new home of Willie, an African bull elephant who came to us from Disney.

Sandusky has Cedar Point, but that's not really a "driving through" kind of destination. It's quite a large park with 1-2 days worth of attractions. While it's all about the coasters....there are family friendly rides too. And it's not at all budget! But it's worth a trip. There are a lot of other things in Sandusky like the drive through safari park or taking the ferry over to the lake erie islands. My kids get a kick out of riding around the island in the golf carts (the main mode of transportation there), exploring the caves and other assorted "tourist trap" stuff they have up there. It's a fun day. Sandusky also has 3 waterpark resorts. Castaway Bay owned by Cedar Point, a Great Wolf Lodge and the one I'd recommend, Kalahari. An overnight stop at any one of these for some swimming fun would not be budget either...but the kids would probably love it. We live less than an hour from Sandusky and we still take a 2 night trip there yearly.

Toledo I don't know as much about as my trips there were limited to visiting friends at U of Toledo. I don't think you want to hear about the bar scene there so I'll leave that up to people who know better.

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Old 02-13-2013, 05:49 AM   #20
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For your children's ages...there is nothing that I would recommend in Cleveland, unless you want to take them to a show in the Playhouse Square district. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame would probably not interest them and we tried the aquarium last week and I would not recommend stopping there. It was not worth the price of admission and you will be through it in an hour. I would suggest stopping somewhere along the Great Lakes though for sightseeing. Cedar Point is not Disney, but it is a great park along the way. Definitely not budget friendly, but a fun park. There is also a water park near there if you enjoy water parks. Kelly's Island is near Port Clinton...you have to take a ferry over. My kids loved exploring the island.
I highly recommend Greenfield Village near the Henry Ford Museum, especially with the ages of your children. It is a really cool living history museum and definitely worth the stop.
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Old 02-13-2013, 05:59 AM   #21
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I drove that way last summer with 3 of my kids, ages 11-13. We visited Wolf Park in Battle Ground, IN, and the Museum of Science & Industry in Chicago. The kids loved both. There were many more museums in Chicago that we would have visited, if we had the time.
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:06 AM   #22
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If you're coming by on 80/90 the Sandusky/Port Clinton area has much more to offer than just Cedar Point. I saw someone mention the drive thru safari and that is alot of fun. There are also water parks, mini golf, etc.
I have to also agree with the Toledo Zoo (Of course I'm a member so I always push it ) We are there a lot year round. THe downfall, there isn't much else exciting in the Toledo are in my opinion. Just east of Toledo is Maumee Bay Resort which is really nice but I don't really trust or recommend swimming in Lake Erie
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Old 02-13-2013, 06:55 AM   #23
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As you're not really going to be near Indianapolis (dead middle of the state), you may want to stop by the campus of Notre Dame in South Bend. It should be pretty close to the route you're taking and is a very nice campus -- although not quite as pretty as it is in the fall.
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Old 02-13-2013, 07:56 AM   #24
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I hear a tour of the dum dum factory os pretty cool.
http://www.spanglercandy.com/about-us/tour-store-museum
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:20 AM   #25
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Will you be traveling near Pittsburgh? The kids science museum there is awesome!
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:23 AM   #26
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Cedar Point. The Roller Coaster Capital of the World.

No place better for thrill rides. Of course I may be biased since I used to work there.
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Old 02-13-2013, 08:56 AM   #27
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Something I haven't seen mentioned yet is the Christmas Story house in Cleveland. Also a short way off of 80/90. If you're a Christmas Story fan, that's a quickie, but a goodie! Just google it for more info.
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Old 02-13-2013, 09:27 AM   #28
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I'd second the suggestions of Indianapolis Children's Museum and The Fort Wayne Children's Zoo. Also in Fort Wayne is Science Central- a hands on kids science learning center...it is great also.

Cedar Point is great- but it takes at least a day and depending on time when you get there you could have crowds.

Have fun!
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Old 02-13-2013, 12:44 PM   #29
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I'm not sure what you're plan are in Chicago but Brookfield Zoo, just outside of Chicago is very nice. In Chicago, there's the Shedd Aquarium, Science and Industry, Field, Art Institute, the glass ledge on the Willis (Sears) tower and also Lincoln Park Zoo.
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Old 02-13-2013, 02:43 PM   #30
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Have enjoyed reading this thread. Will be having a staycation for spring break this year and am getting some great ideas for day trips.
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