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Sep 01

20 Outdoor Activities for the Kids in Manhattan

Posted on September 1, 2020 at 3:25 PM by Tarra Rotstein

Fall is setting in and now is the perfect time to get outside and explore. Read on for 20 activity options for kids of all ages! 

  1. Take a bike ride through City Park for a short distance ride. Enjoy one of Manhattan's most well known parks located right outside of Aggieville. 
  2. Take the kids for a walk through the K-State Gardens. Make it a fun experience identifying the different types of plants and learn about the statues in the K-State Gardens. 
  3. Pack up a couple of sandwiches, snacks and a blanket for a picnic at one of the 29 parks in Manhattan. Enjoy viewing the wildlife while eating. 
  4. At home make a scavenger hunt list of things you can see at a park; like a dog or someone using a unique form of transportation or even someone wearing a blue shirt. Go for a walk in the park and check off your scavenger hunt list as you go. 
  5. Bring binoculars and go bird watching. Tuttle Creek Lake State Park is a great place to do this. Look online for a list of birds in the area so you have an idea what you're looking for. This is a great way for kids to learn about the surrounding environment. 
  6. Walk across the pedestrian bridge connecting Northeast Community Park and Linear Trail. This suspension bridge is a hidden gem of Manhattan. It makes for a fun surprise when going for a walk. 
  7. Head to Anneberg Park and check out the pond and ducks in the area. There is plenty of space for kids to roam and play, even go on walk. 
  8. Learn a new sport with your kid such as disc golf. This sport is great for those who are 10 . This will be a great way to get in those PE credits needed for the school year. Manhattan has 4 disc golf courses located all around town. 
  9. Have a kid who is crazy about animals? Head to the Sunset Zoo, an outdoor zoo with more than 200 animals on site. The Sunset Zoo celebrated two births this August; a baby white-handed gibbon and a Caribbean flamingo. Feel free to pack your own water and snack for this outing. 
  10. Visit Flint Hills Discovery Center's Prairie Garden Trail. This short trail that wraps around the backside of the Flint Hills Discovery Center and features fifteen information signs that highlight the Prairie Garden flora and fauna and other Flint Hills topics.
  11. Head to downtown Manhattan for an art walk along the Third Street corridor. Find 9 unique sculptures as a result of a grant from the Greater Manhattan Community Foundation and Deihl Community fund. 
  12. Go on a Story Walk Downtown, starting at the Library! Take a walk down Poyntz Ave. and nearby streets while reading pages from the book, Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes by Eric Litwin and James Dean. After you read the book's first pages in the windows of the library, continue walking down Poyntz and look for more pages in business windows.
  13. Find the rose garden on the east side of City Park. The garden has a long history that dates back to 1927, almost 100 years ago. 
  14. The Sunset Zoo features a fun playground for kids to enjoy. There are picnic tables nearby for picnic lunches or snack time.
  15. Head out to the K-177 Scenic Overlook and try to identify what is in the distance. From the Scenic Overlook you can see for 20 miles out. 
  16. Fairmont Park is 110 acres just off the Kansas River. The park features many open spaces, a playground, disc golf course and several unique trail routes for kids who enjoy the outdoors. 
  17. CiCo Park features a fun playground on the west side of town with plenty of room to roam. There is even a fitness trail around the whole park for the family to enjoy. 
  18. Know a kid who is into skateboarding or bike tricks? The Skate Park at CiCo features a beginners' area that has a quarter pipe, bank ramp and grind box. Be sure to grab your helmet and knee pads for this adventure. 
  19. Go for a drive and view all the art murals in Manhattan. There are many art murals for young artists to appreciate and become inspired by. Find the list here.  
  20. Don’t miss a piece of Manhattan history at the City Park, Johnny Kaw. This 24 foot tall statue was first constructed in 1966. Stop by and grab a selfie with the Kansas Legend. 


We know there are tons of other activities for kids who are looking to get outside in Manhattan. What activity are you most excited to do next?

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