Community, Family Time in Wenatchee, Living Wenatchee, Tourism

Five fun things to do with your family

Located in the heart of Washington state mere hours from the Seattle metro area to the west and Spokane to the east, the Wenatchee Valley has a lot to offer when it comes to wintertime recreation, activities, and attractions. While this list is by no means comprehensive, here are five awesome family-friendly things to do during the winter months in the Wenatchee Valley.

Skiing and snowboarding at Mission Ridge

With a ski and snowboard resort just 12 miles from downtown, Wenatchee is “Washington’s only
ski town,” as the good folks at Mission Ridge will tell you. Boasting 2,000 acres of terrain, it’s got big mountain skiing and riding but keeps the small-town charm with ski and board instructors, ski patrol and staff members that always make you feel comfortable, safe and welcome. If you’re
just starting out it’s a great place to learn. If you’re a more advanced skier or rider there are plenty of challenging runs and off-piste terrain to explore.

And don’t forget the terrain parks! With four parks that cater to every level of ability, Mission Ridge offers the chance to hone and level up your skills in a safe and controlled environment. Or if you’re more advanced, you can head to the Lib Tech 100LAPS Rope Tow Park and challenge yourself on the only dedicated rope tow serviced terrain park in the Pacific Northwest.
Whatever your skill level or style of mountain terrain you want to play on, Mission Ridge has you and your family covered. Visit their website at https://www.missionridge.com/.

Ice skating at the Town Toyota Center

The Town Toyota Center boasts two ice rinks and the iFiber rink located on the East side of the building is open for public skating from 1 to 3 p.m. daily, as well as skating camps and lessons for both hockey players and aspiring figure skaters.

learning to skate is so much easier

Regular admission is only $6, children who are five and under are just $3 and skate rentals are $2 so it’s an affordable and fun way to spend an afternoon with your kids. You can also rent the rink for a private party, birthday bash or broomball game, and you can find the prices for those
on their website at https://www.towntoyotacenter.com/ifiber-events.

even watching is fun

Rock Climbing at the Riverfront Rock Gym

With 14,000 square feet of indoor climbing and top rope, auto-belay and lead climbing on some of the steepest, longest routes in Washington the Riverfront Rock Gym is a great place to challenge yourself and keep your climbing skills sharp during the cold, wet winter months when outdoor climbing is usually less than pleasant.

you got this – purple all the way

Plus they have a wide variety of classes and lessons for climbers of all ages and abilities. They also have Yoga classes and a cafe, coffee shop, and tap room if the kids are feeling a little peckish after their workout and you want to sample some tasty PNW microbrews!

patience and learning

Learn at the Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center

Get out of the cold and learn about our unique region and its history at the Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center located in downtown Wenatchee. The building was originally Wenatchee’s first post office, and also served as the first jail since it housed the only safe in town when the town was first starting out. So bad guys and bandits would be locked in with the mail overnight to ensure public safety. But that’s not the only interesting tidbit of local lore you’ll learn when you visit the museum.

The museum caters to young and old alike with plenty of exhibits like petroglyphs, artwork, beads and more from the native people of the Columbia plateau, the Great Northern Railway diorama and working train set as well as the “Golden Age of Flight” exhibit featuring information
about the historic first nonstop trans-pacific flight which took off in Japan and landed in a field in East Wenatchee in 1931. Coyote’s Corner offers a hands-on children’s activity area where self-guided art projects, books, and interactive items are available. It’s a fun, educational and affordable way to spend the afternoon with your kids. Learn more via their website at
https://www.wenatcheevalleymuseum.org/.

Explore Pybus Public Market

You can’t visit the Wenatchee Valley without checking out our iconic Pybus Public Market. Originally built to be an aluminum plant, the building was left to languish along the riverfront of the Columbia River after it outlived its usefulness. But it was brought back to life through a public-private partnership and re-opened as a public market in 2013. Now it houses restaurants and vendors and has become one of Wenatchee’s main attractions, serving as a social hub for locals and visitors alike.

fun for kids – photo by MKC Photography

Stop in and enjoy a bite to eat at Fire, South or Pybus Bistro and treat the kids to some gelato at Ice after your meal. Pybus is a great place to pick up a memento of your time in the Wenatchee Valley and parents will enjoy sampling award-winning wines at the Jones of Washington tasting
room. Learn more about Pybus Public Market at https://pybuspublicmarket.org/ .

Honorable mentions:
Here are a few more fun things to do with your family in the Wenatchee Valley during the winter.
● Play gym (open gym) at S.P.O.R.T. Gymnastics .
● Walk or bike the Apple Capital Loop Trail .
● Skate at Hale Park , Wenatchee’s brand new skatepark.
● Visit the Children’s Library at the Wenatchee Public Library .

Dominick Bonny

Writer, videographer and social media manager with Digital Media Northwest in Wenatchee, Wa.