Indoor Family Fun in Metro Detroit

By: Michael Fossbakk | November 4, 2013

We’ve all been there—too busy to spend time with the family, whether that is from work, school or other obligations. In reality, your family should come before all of that other rigmarole. After all, who else loves you enough to fix your flat tire on the highway in the bitter Michigan winter, or bail you out of a bad situation? Spend a day with your loved ones in Metro Detroit.

As the winter nears and the cold weather starts to creep up on us, indoor activities seem to be logical. Museums, cultural centers and showcases are great places to have fun with the family, while often being educational at the same time. Here are some suggestions:

Albert L. Lorenzo Cultural Center sits at 44575 Garfield Rd. in Clinton Township and explores our community’s heritage. Key influences, events and people are often featured here, such as presidents, wars, civil rights and The Great Depression to name a few.  This might be a tough sell to your pre-teen or teenager, who wants nothing to do with history when not in school. But once you get them here, they’ll appreciate it. The next big feature here will be The Roaring Twenties: From Rags to Riches. This exhibit will be on display from February 22, 2014 through May 4, 2014.

Cranbrook Institute of Science is located at 39221 Woodward in Bloomfield Hills, and is an impressive site that sees hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. This place has a towering Tyrannosaurus Rex model, which is the only full-sized T-Rex skeleton cast in Michigan. It also offers the “Bat Zone” with over 150 bats, as well as other nocturnal animals such as sugar gliders or three-toed sloths.

Detroit Historical Museum located at 5401 Woodward in Detroit offers more than 250,000 artifacts in its collections. The museum is run by the Detroit Historical Society and portrays and preserves the rich history of Detroit and its surrounding region.  This is another great place to take your child(ren) and educate them on all of the changes our region has gone through, as well as show off its history. It offers a wide array of activities and educational programs. For example, the Scholar and Author Series features monthly evening lectures on Detroit historical topics by authors and historians, as well as the Film Series which screens documentaries on the history of the city. There are always tours and exhibits as well.

Detroit Institute of Arts located at 5200 Woodward in Detroit is a historic place I am embarrassed to say I have never been. Don’t be like me, go to this beautiful institute. The DIA has an impressive arsenal of features, such as an 1,150 seat auditorium and  a state-of-the-art conservations service laboratory, among others. The 658,000 square foot museum has been a staple of Detroit since 1885 and includes more than 100 galleries. Take your kids here, they will thank you later. I am going to culture myself and attend the DIA this weekend.

Suburban Collection Showcase, 46100 Grand River in Novi sits on a staggering 55 acres of land. It is the largest privately-owned exposition and conference center in Michigan. I know I have had a lot of fun there in the past, and with a plethora of events it is easy to find something the whole family will like. Check the event calendar to see what expositions are going on for that week. Interesting upcoming family events include the Novi Pet Expo in mid November, Christmas Wonderfest in early December and Boys and Girls Christmas Stars in the Motor City Classic  in mid December. More than 1.5 million people walk through its doors each year, so obviously there is something for everybody.

Just remember, family first. Have fun!