25+ Winter Break Activities for Families Near Kalamazoo- 2020-2021

Winter family

Winter Break is Snow-Packed Full of FUN

We made it.

Clearly, 2020 has not gone as expected; however, we’ve made it into the home stretch with winter break. And while Michigan is on a COVID-related “pause” currently, there are still activities for families to enjoy during this seasonal break.

Most area schools start winter break officially on December 21 and return to school on Monday, January 4, 2021.

It doesn’t get better than having time off to relax, enjoy time with family, and bask in one of the most enchanting seasons of the year, no matter which holiday you celebrate.

However, as the school hiatus progresses, the kids develop a strong case of cabin fever and you are fresh out of ideas. Where to take the kids sledding or tubing? Where can you find indoor activities when you need a snow break?

We have done the research so you don’t have to: this guide includes 25+ boredom-smashing activities to entertain and engage families in Kalamazoo over winter break.

Sports and Physical Activities

Build an epic snow fort in the backyard with these tips.

Drop-in for soccer sessions with Kingdom Sports, starting December 21. Toddler Open Play and Adult Soccer are both offered.

Snowing? Try these sledding hills, ski spots and tubing options.

Museums and Art

Make your own sand candle with Kalamazoo Candle Company.

Go on a scavenger hunt for beautiful artwork downtown with a mural crawl.

Kids at mural in Kalamazoo

No hats or mittens required to build these snowman crafts.

Pick up some pottery to paint at home from Art Bayou.

Kalamazoo Pottery Painting

Photo: Art Bayou

Visit Unveiling American Genius at the KIA. This exhibit features work by women, African Americans and Latinx artists.

Nature & Sightseeing

Head out to one of the Lake Michigan beaches to see beautiful ice formations on the piers.

Experience one mile of Christmas lights as you drive Marshall’s Merry Mile through December 27.

Take a stroll downtown through the sparkling lights. 

Bundle up and go for a hike on one of our favorite trails.

Visit Portage City Center (near the library) to visit the illuminated statues and trees. Finish your night with a trip to Celery Flats to see the giant Christmas cards and lights.

Take a drive down Christmas Card Lane to see over 40 oversized Christmas cards in the Westwood neighborhood.

Recipes & Local Food

Try a fun winter snack that is easy for the kids to make, pretzel snowmen.

Enjoy an Ultimate Hot Chocolate from Main Street Portage. Available for outdoor dining or carryout!

Main Street Portage Hot Cocoa

Photo: Main Street Pub- Portage

Grab breakfast to go from one of our readers’ favorite breakfast spots.

Try out the latest beverage craze: hot cocoa bombs.

Pack the blankets and dine under the stars in an igloo, tent or heated patio.

Photo: HopCat

Fridge stuffed from Christmas meals? Try these ideas to transform your leftovers into new dishes.

Road Trip

Head west to St. Joe and stroll through over one million twinkling lights at Light Up the Bluff (available through Valentine’s Day).

lights

Visit a Reindeer Farm.

Go on an elf hunt in Hudsonville.

Visit the LEGO displays at the Grand Rapids Public Museum and other GR attractions (be sure to verify ticket policies).

Try some drive-through lights in other cities in Michigan.

Winter Break Events

We’ve highlighted a few fun events during Winter Break. Check our calendar for more ideas each day!

Winter Break STEAM Grab and Go Activity Kits
Pierce Cedar Creek Institute
701 W Cloverdale Rd, Hastings, MI 49058
» December 19, 2020 – January 2, 2021 | 9am-5pm
Stop-by the Institute and pick up a FREE kit of fun, hands-on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) activities.


Air Zoo Science Floor Shows
Air Zoo
6151 Portage Rd, Portage, MI 49002
» December 19, 2020-January 3 2021 | 2pm
A 30-minute live show included with admission. Each show will feature one of the following science themes: Subzero Science or Super Science of Superheroes and Super Villains

Air Zoo

Howliday Virtual Safari Series
Hosted by John Ball Zoo
Virtual Event
» December 21 & 23, 28 & 30, 2020
Over Winter Break we’ll highlight all the fun animals have each day with different enrichment items, as our keepers work to keep all of the animals healthy and have opportunities to show off their natural behaviors. $3/Member and $5/Non-Members. Register


Virtual Winter Camp (K-2nd Grade)
Hosted by Air Zoo
Virtual Event
» December 22 & 23, 29 & 30, 2020 | 9am-12pm
Three hours long and live with an Air Zoo Educator via a secure classroom link. The cost per camp is $12 including the materials kit (shipping of kits is $10 or free pick-up is available). Camp sizes will be limited to 24 students. Registrations are due no later than 14 days prior to the camp start date.


Virtual Winter Camp (3rd-5th Grade)
Hosted by Air Zoo
Virtual Event
» December 22 & 23, 29 & 30, 2020 | 1pm-4pm
Three hours long and live with an Air Zoo Educator via a secure classroom link. The cost per camp is $12 including the materials kit (shipping of kits is $10 or free pick-up is available). Camp sizes will be limited to 24 students. Registrations are due no later than 14 days prior to the camp start date.


“Break Blast” Family Camp
Schrier Park
850 W Osterhout Ave, Portage, MI 49002
» January 2, 2021 | 9am-12pm
Staff will lead a camp-style program with winter-themed games, crafts and a winter habitat hike. This program will take place both indoors and outdoors and families are encouraged to bring a lunch to enjoy after the program. Space is limited, register in advance. $5 per child, Adults are FREE