March 21, 2012

Last-minute Spring Break Ideas

Nerf Wars

What’s that you say? Spring break is just around the corner and you haven’t had the time or money to plan any ambitious getaways?
Don’t fret. We’ve got an assortment of last-minute spring break ideas for families, none of which require a suitcase or a fortune.

Redmond Area Park and Recreation District
March 26-30: Adventure Quest all-day program, “It’s Spring Break Charlie Brown,” K-5th grades
March 26 & 28: Sports Sampler, 3rd-7th grades
March 27: Nerf Wars, 3rd-7th grades
March 29: Dodgeball Mania, 3-7th grade
March 27 & 28: Play it up, K-5th grades
March 26-30: Special spring break open swim times daily, 1-3:45 p.m.; 541-548-7275

Redmond Ice Skating Rink, downtown on Seventh Street
Weather dependent, call 541-548-7275 to verify hours
Sun-Thurs: 5-9 p.m.
Fri-Sun: 5-10 p.m.
$4 includes skate rental; $1 with own skates, $12 family
Free skate sessions (with own skates)
Mon-Thurs: 10 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Fri-Sun: 10 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

The Museum at Warm Springs
Dedicated to preserving and sharing the cultural, traditional and artistic heritage of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, the museum contains multi-media exhibits, educational tableaus and kid-friendly activities.
Located about 35 miles north of Redmond on Highway 26
Open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Closed Sundays and Mondays.
$7 adults, $4.50 ages 13-18, $3.50 ages 5-12

Kah-nee-ta Resort
This family-friendly resort kicks into high gear in summer but its big hot-springs fed pool – with slides and fountains – is open year-round at a comfortable 92 degrees. A separate children’s wading pool is also available.
Located about 12 miles off Highway 26 in Warm Springs, follow signs
$10 adults, $6 ages 3-10, unlimited water slides $4

Madras Aquatic Center
This new facility has a few perks we can’t get in Redmond, including water slides, rope swing and “lazy river” in its leisure pools.
Located at 1195 SE Kemper Way Madras
Mon-Fri: 4-7:40 p.m.
Sat-Sun: 1-4 p.m.
Out of district fees: $5.50 adult, $4.50 children; 541-475-4253

Maryhill Museum of Art
This quirky gem, sited in a turn-of-the-century mansion perched above the Columbia River Gorge, has something for all members of the family – from an outdoor sculpture garden to collections of native crafts to wonderful sculptures by Rodin and paintings by both modern and past masters (and more than a few wild peacocks).
Besides its regular exhibits the museum is featuring a collection of images of mid-Columbia Indians during spring break.
Located about 125 miles north of Redmond, just west of Highway 97 on the Washington side of the river.
Open every day, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
$9 adults, $3 youth 7-18, $25 families

John Day Fossil Beds
While the fossil beds are quiet this time of year, with no ranger-led tours or special programs, it can also be a great time to visit, before the crowds and summer heat arrive.
The visitor’s center, packed with hands-on interpretive displays for all ages, is open, as are the trails.
Located about 100 miles east of Redmond along Highway 126, the beds are scattered in three sites, follow signs.
Sheep Rock Visitor’s Center open daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Free, donations accepted

Hoodoo Mountain Resort
The ski season is wrapping up but Hoodoo is opening its “tubing autobahn” every day during spring break.
Location: Summit of Highway 20 (Santiam Highway)
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
All day passes: $25 age 13 and over, $20 under 12
High Desert Museum
If you want a sure-fire winner for kids, this is it. Chock full of displays highlighting the natural and cultural resources in the high desert, it never fails to entertain.
March 28 the museum will have a special event centered around its current “Leapers & Creepers” exhibit, with a petting zoo of reptiles as well as crafts and games.
Location: 59800 S. Highway 97, about 25 miles south of Redmond
Open 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
$10 adults, $6 youth 5-12

Des Chutes Historical Society Museum
For older kids, this history museum can be a fascinating afternoon. Exhibits on the lumber industry, an old school classroom, homestead kitchen and doctor’s office are just a few of its special features.
Location: 129 NW Idaho Ave., Bend
$5 adults, $2 ages 13-17, kids under 13 free with adult

Summer Lake/Fort Rock
If you’re looking at getting outside so the kids can let loose some energy, an 85 to 120-mile drive south might be just the ticket.
Fort Rock, a tuff-stone monolith stranded in a landscape of sagebrush, was once surrounded by an inland sea. All that remains is a surreal ring of rock that kids might find reminiscent of a science-fiction film. A picnic area kicks off a trailhead for a myriad of hiking paths suitable for all ages.
Just a bit farther south is Summer Lake, a massive marshy body of water that serves as a wildlife preserve. In March and April, viewers can spot migrating flocks of waterfowl from the 8-mile-long road that bisects the lake; a visitor’s center is located in the town of Summer Lake.
To reach Fort Rock and Summer Lake, take Highway 97 south through Bend, head left onto Highway 31 after about 50 miles, follow signs.

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