Kids' Guide 2011

A fun-for-all helping of the area’s best activities, learning tools, gathering places and more for little Main Liners.

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Play Time

Go-karts are a real rush at Arnold’s Family Fun Center. (Photo by Jared Castaldi)

Let’s be honest, driving is fun. And though we may not be ready for our kids to hit the highway, we can at least satisfy their curiosity in a safe environment. “People like speed, and they start out young,” says Sandy Brinton, general manager of Arnold’s Family Fun Center in Oaks.

Named for original owner Ed Arnold, Arnold’s has electric go-karts for ages 3 and older, with two racetracks within its 144,000 square feet. Kart sizes match the ages and heights of the drivers, and parents or licensed siblings can hop in the double-seaters with the littlest ones.

An “indoor amusement-type park,” as Brinton calls it, Arnold’s also has nine holes of ocean-themed black-light mini golf, laser tag, bumper cars, an arcade and redemption prize shop, three inflatable bounces, duckpin bowling, plus a carousel and other rides. There’s even
a buffet.

“I like to see all the people come in and have a great time. It looks like a casino with all the lights flashing,” says Brinton. “It’s a very exciting place.”

2200 West Drive, Oaks; (610) 666-0600,


Tots and tweens can hop, skip and jump to their hearts’ content at this indoor playground filled with inflatable structures. Locations in Exton and Oaks,

Grand Slam USA
At more than 30,000 square feet, this facility offers batting cages, a pro shop for baseball and softball players, an arcade with redemption games, inflatables, laser tag, a pirate-themed glow-in-the-dark mini golf course, and more. 11 E. Lancaster Ave., Malvern; (610) 647-6622,

Jumpers Fun Zone
Family owned and operated, this hot party spot features safari bounce houses, inflatable slides, a three-tier soft play unit, and the “Little Cub” fun area. Ridley Creek Plaza, 5117 West Chester Pike, Newtown Square; (610) 353-3377,

Oasis Family Fun Center
This 20,000-square-foot play place boasts a 16-foot rock-climbing wall, a body-bending laser maze, video and redemption games, plus a soft playground with slides and tunnels for kids ages 1-11. The multi-level “Ballocity Arena” (for ages 4-12) includes blasters, cannons and buckets that shoot and dump thousands of soft foam balls. Also on-site: free Wi-Fi access and Old Forge Pizza Express. 35 LaCrue Ave., Glen Mills; (610) 358-3501,

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