Believe me, I'm a fan of indoor play spots like Kids Town in Wheaton, and open gyms like those held at professional gymnasiums. I like scheduling playdates at nature centers including Hickory Knolls Discovery Center in St. Charles and the Red Oak Nature Center in North Aurora.
But sometimes, I just need a huge open space in which to let my preschooler RUN! Unfortunately in the Midwest, you can't always do that outdoors.
So I was pleased to discover the "Preschool Playtime" offered by the St. Charles Park District. For just $3 for up to two hours, your kids can play in the big gymnasium in the Pottawatomie Community Center, located next to the Fox River on the east side of St. Charles in Pottawatomie Park. (The $3 rate applies whether you are a resident or not.)
The Preschool Playtimes are part of the park district's general "open gym" schedule, which is updated weekly on its site. You'll find a link to the current week, and usually several weeks into the future, on the right side of the park district's website under the "Quick Clicks" section. Usually they are offered from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. or 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday. But those times are not set in stone, and can change from week to week, and so I don't feature it on the Go West Calendar. You can also call 630-513-6200 to make sure there will be an open gym for preschoolers before you head out.