I am always on the look out for new places to take my daughter on a rainy day, and recently I discovered the Skokie Exploritorium. This is an indoor play space on steroids! It quickly has become our favorite indoor place to visit, and bring on the north side, only a 15-20 minute drive.
The great thing about the Exploritorium is the different play areas, which cater to children from ages 1-8. The play areas include:
The star attraction is the three-story playground, with numerous tubes, tunnels, and two huge slides. I was a little hesitant sending my 2-year old up it, but she loved it! I was able to keep track of her, and then after 15 minutes she came shooting down the slide with a huge smile on her face! Also, this is the only area where kids need to take off their shoes.
It's never extemely crowded during the week, and the open floor plan makes it very easy to stand in the middle and see your child, regardless of what area they are playing in. There is also plenty of confortable seating for parents as well.
Food is at a minimum, with just a few vending machines (all healthy choices) in the seating area just outside the play area. They do allow you to bring in outside food if you wish. You can also went out the play area
The cost is reasonable, being $5 for non-residents and free for kids under 12 months. They also offer 10-visit passes and do birthday parties on the weekends. We will be there for my daughter's 3rd birthday!
Mon-Tues, Fri - 9am-5pm
Wed - 12pm-5pm
Sat - 9am-1pm
Closed Thursday and Sunday