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How to keep kids active during colder winter months

This time of year, it's easy to put kids in front of the TV or tablet, but there are plenty of free things to do during the winter months to keep kids active.

TOLEDO, Ohio — The holidays are behind us and the cold has set in, which means the kids are probably parked in front of the TV for hours on end.

The Toledo Museum of Art's Family Art Club offers free classes on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. You just have to register in advance. 

"Families can come and enjoy and create. Every week, we do a different activity that relates to whether that's a certain activity up in the galleries or just something fun that we're doing at the museum," Family Center Manager Regina Jankowski said.

Deanna Wright is now 8 years old and has been coming to the Family Center for four years. She said she loves it because she can be herself. Plus, she gets to create with her mom. 

"(I get) to do stuff with her while I'm out of school," she said. 

The art club isn't just for kids; families are invited to create together. 

"It's a great avenue in creative energy. It's a wonderful way parents and children can create together," Jankowski said.

From the Old West End to downtown Toledo, kids can get away from the screens at Main Library. They can cozy up with a book or play around with the light wall, making creations with color.

They can also dive into the Nancy Drew mystery wall. All you have to do is take a clue card and work through the mystery.  

"We also have our scavenger hunts going all of the time here at this location. You can look for the different letters, do different activities the letters will ask you to do. It's just a great way to come, spend some time with your family. Grab a great book, sit and read together. Those are the memories that really get us through winter," Toledo Lucas County Public Library Assitant Youth Services Coordinator Lauren Boeke said. 

The library also offers several reading challenges and you can earn prizes.

Make sure to check out your local library branch for unique activities. 

The best part is, it's all free. 

But, it may be a good idea to call ahead to make sure your program is still happening on schedule. On Monday, the library posted it was canceling January's in-person programs because of COVID-19.

To help keep our community as safe as possible, January in-person programs are cancelled. Virtual programs and all other services are still available.

Posted by Toledo Lucas County Public Library on Monday, January 10, 2022

For those who actually enjoy the cold and snow, the Toledo MetroParks cater to winter weather.

"We don't want to hibernate. We want to get on those trails so when it does snow, we have programs like sledding, pop-up snowshoeing; so, dependent on the weather, we can provide some new and different experiences," MetroParks Toledo Director of Education and Programming Shannon Hughes said.

The MetroParks also offers "glamping" and drop-off camps for kids to learn a bit about nature with or without their parents. 

Plus, for the adventurers, there are winter hiking programs. 

All parks are open every day dawn to dusk. Check out the full programming calendar here.

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