The Virginia Discovery Museum: A must see for kids. Special exhibits, fun toys, activities, educational opportunities. East end of the Downtown Mall. Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10:00-5:00, Sunday 1:00-5:00 Closed Mondays. $6 per person, all ages (under 1 year old free). Website

Ride the FREE Trolley: Young kids love this. Catch the trolley at the 2nd Street crossing, the Transit Center, or above the Omni. Takes you down West Main, around the University, then back downtown.

Alakazam Toys: Lots of great toys located on the on the corner of 1st and Main Street. Parking on Water Street. One hour parking validation for customers. Hours: Monday-Thursday 10-5, Friday & Saturday 10-6, Sunday 12-5. Website

Utopia: Gifts, gadgets, and toys, toys, toys! East end of the Downtown Mall. Website in development.

JMRL Central Library: Has extensive kid programs. Website

Main Street Arena: Ice skating, fashion shows, lacross, hockey, curling, roller derby’s, camps and classes, and full-service bar and cafe. You never know what will be going on at the MSA. Check it out at

The Downtown Carousel: It’s free!

The Free Speech Wall: Give your kid a piece of chalk and let him go wild! Link

McGuffey Park: water wall, funky play equipment, basketball, long benches. Learn more.

The Candy Store: this shop will make the little ones bug-eyed.

Chaps Ice Cream, Splendora’s or Kilwins: homemade ice cream, gelato, and fudge. No better way to lure kids Downtown.

Other Sweets

Paradox Pastry

Gearharts Chocolates (fine, locally-made chocolate)

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