Teenagers Can Take a Digital Break

Being a tween or teen is tough. They’ve outgrown the children’s museums and library storytimes, but like all of us, they still want to have fun. In fact, they may even want to put their phone down a time or two. What’s a teenager to do?

We’ve rounded up the best activities and fun for tweens and tweens and we were delighted to find a variety of options in the Kalamazoo area. From adventure rope courses to tabletop gaming, we discovered something for every interest.

Get ready to put those cell phones down…well, after you text a friend to invite them to tag along.

30+ Ideas for Teen and Tween Fun Around Kalamazoo

Active and Outdoor Fun 

SkyZone GLOW takes jumping to a new level. Lasers, music, and blacklight turn the entire place into a jumping dance club every Friday from 8:00 PM – 10:00 PM. Jumpers must wear bright, neon clothing or they can buy a shirt that glows.

Explore new heights at Allegan Event with an outdoor zip line (open seasonally) and the year-round indoor adventure center with ropes courses, climb walls, and plenty of vertically challenging fun.

Go on a treasure hunt for real treasure by geocaching or letterboxing.

Head up to Grand Rapids to transform into a ninja at one of the many ninja warrior courses: RockFit, Rebounderz, and 3 Mile Project will get you started and the adrenaline pumping.

Skate the night away. Great Skate Roller Rink and Rollerworld are perfect places to get exercise, hang out with friends, and listen to music.

Rent snowshoes, skis, tents, or kayaks depending on the season at Lee’s Adventure Sports, or take one of their outdoor classes and enjoy the great outdoors.

Take a belay class and then rock climb all year round without ever heading to the mountains at Climb Kalamazoo.

In summer and fall, be a tourist in your own city by joining one of Gazelle Sports Historic Kalamazoo Walks.

Learn a style of martial arts at one of the Dojos in town. Many of them offer the first class for free to try it out.

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Stretch, and then run your heart out at one of the many races listed on the Kalamazoo Area Runners page.

Gather your friends and sunblock and make your way to one of the many beaches in Southwest Michigan during the summer.

Wolf Lake Fish Hatchery offers fishing, archery, and other outdoor classes, suitable for all ages, as well as snowshoe walks, hatchery tours, and scavenger hunts. Best of all, their programs are FREE.

Go for a bike ride or a hike on one of the many trails located in the Kalamazoo area.

Brainy, Geeky Fun

Get your dice ready and head to Fanfare on Wednesdays from 5:30 PM – 8:00 PM to play Dungeons & Dragons. All ages welcome, free, and the rules are taught if you’re a newbie.

Book a room online and enter a new virtual world at Nova Virtual Reality or Glitch Gaming.

Grab a bunch of friends and try to solve one of seven different puzzles to escape in Escapology at Airway Fun Center.

Pac-Man or Donkey Kong anyone? Play the arcade and pinball games your parents played at Klassic Arcade in Gobles.

Creative and Crafty Fun

Lights! Camera! Action! Sign up for a class at the Civic Theatre to explore acting basics such as speaking with a different accent, writing plays, as well as beginning dance. Classes for ages 12-15.

Explore art at the Kalamazoo Institute of Art’s Teen Night event. These typically run the second Friday of the month from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM and include pizza, pop, pals, and art.

Kalamazoo Institute of Art

Draw, paint, and learn photography at one of the many teen classes offered by the KIA with classes offered year round.

Head to Art Hop on the first Friday of the month with your friends. It’s a perfect way to explore Kalamazoo and support local artists.

Learn how to create beautiful stained glass at one of the classes offered at Peepers Stained Glass or Glass Art Kalamazoo.

Enter the Teen Filmmaker Festival. Each year, teens (ages 12-19) can produce, direct, and submit a ten-minute film to compete for awards. Keep your eyes peeled here for the current year’s festival information.

Paint the night away at Art Bayou, Happy Our Art, or Painting with a Twist.

Drop by Kalamazoo Candle Company and make your very own candle. Explore the different fragrances and mix & match your favorites until you find the perfect combination. Create your very own labels for unique-as-you candles.

Everyday Fun

Join one of the fun teen game nights, events, or support groups at the Portage and Kalamazoo libraries. From cupcake decorating, arts and crafts, board and video games, to finding other LGBTQ+ teens to connect with, our libraries have it all.

Drink a cup of java at one of the many coffee shops we have in the Kalamazoo area, or try your hand at making one of your favorite Starbucks copycat recipes.

Head to the Air Zoo to see their latest exhibit or climb aboard a 3D Full-Motion Flight Simulator. Save your allowance to take control of a real plane with a barnstorming flight experience in an open cockpit Biplane adventure (seasonally mid-May thru September).

Try a new restaurant in one of the Local Flavor Guides on Discover Kalamazoo. They offer guides for best burgers, farmer’s markets, hidden gems, and various spots to find tasty treats.

Volunteer at one of the local libraries to gain experience and volunteer hours, and make friends. Kalamazoo Public Library has the Teen Task Force and Portage Library offers the Teen Volunteer Training Meetings twice a year. Check the PDL calendar for details.

Learn how to ride a horse at one of the stables around Kalamazoo. Many offer riding lessons for all experience levels.

Catch a concert or game at Wings Stadium. They offer everything from current artists, K-Wings games, and special events like the USA Curling Nationals.

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