Fun, Cheap Activities for Kids in Lansing, Michigan

boy in waterpark image by PETER LAKOMY from

It’s not news that kids need entertaining. Why else are toys, video games and theme parks endlessly popular? However, it can often become challenging and costly to find child-specific endeavors. In Lansing, Michigan, kids can enjoy a range of activities that are inexpensive and fun.

Hawk Island County Park

Hawk Island County Park, located on Cavanaugh Road, in South Lansing offers kids a myriad of things to do. The park has a large pond with a sandy beach for swimming, boating and fishing. Lansing residents pay a $2 vehicle fee, and non-residents are charged $4. Visitors can rent rowboats or pedal boats. The park also has a Splash Pad where water shoots from jets, hoses and fountains for kids to run through and play in.

Potter Park Zoo

Animal lovers should meander to Potter Park Zoo on Pennsylvania Avenue in Lansing, MI. The 58-acre zoo is open year round and provides a home for more than 450 animals. Children aged 3 to 16 years pay only $2 admission, and children under the age of 3 are free. Zoo exhibits include Wings from Down Under (400 birds in free flight), Farmyard EdVentures (farm animals from all over the world), Feline and Primate House (snow leopards, African lions and much more), and several other exhibits where kids can see reptiles, wolves and even coral reefs.

Family Aquatic Center

The Family Aquatic Center, in East Lansing, Michigan, is a 3,000 square foot splash park. Kids can enjoy a 140-foot body water slide, a 190-foot tube water slide, a splash park, a sunbathing deck, diving board and many other water related amenities. Daily fees range from $8 per day for non-residents to $4 for seniors and young children. Long-term passes are also available. The Aquatic Center is located at 6400 Abbot Road in East Lansing, Michigan.

Impression 5 Center

The Impression 5 Science Center is a hands on learning facility designed to teach kids about their world. The Center has many exhibits such as the Bubble Room where kids can use the center’s sticky bubble solution to make giant free-floating bubbles. Additional exhibits include the Water Room, the Giant Eyeball and Simple Machines, among others. Cost for children is "pay your age" until the age of 5. The cost then stays at $5 for students and adults. The Center is located at 200 Museum Drive in Lansing, Michigan.

Burchfield Park

The Lansing area has many parks for kids to enjoy for little or no cost. Burchfield Park in Holt (south of Lansing) provides a host of possible activities for kids during winter and summer. Included in the parks amenities are canoe landings, hiking trails, a softball diamond and volleyball area. In winter, the park offers cross-country ski rentals, a toboggan run and sledding hills.


About the Author

Based in northern Michigan, J.R. Erickson has been a freelance writer since 2006. She has been published at the White Pine Press, Michigan Nature Association, Life in the USA, and The Four Cornered Universe. Erickson holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Michigan State University.

Photo Credits

  • boy in waterpark image by PETER LAKOMY from