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Things To Do With Kids in South Bend

Your Guide To Kid-Friendly Activities In The Bend

Being a family-friendly destination is something The Bend takes seriously.

Many of our attractions feature something designed specifically for kids or, even better, are totally kid-centric. Sports fans, animal lovers, chocolate enthusiasts or adventure seekers — there’s a little something for all of them around here.

Howard Park

Howard Park is at its best when the state-of-the-art ice skating trail is open. Skaters can work their way around the park, gliding past the playground and over the bridge. They can also stick to the ice pond for a more traditional skating environment. The massive playground is ADA accessible and features equipment that’s both innovative and traditional.

Elsewhere you’ll find a splash pad, trails and an on-site restaurant, Howard Park Public House.

Potawatomi Zoo

Located right in South Bend, Indiana’s first zoo is home to over 400 animals. Kids can feed the giraffes, take a ride on the Potawatomi Zoo Train, stroll through Zoo Farm or get a hands-on experience with a rhino.

After you visit the zoo, stop by the playground and splash pad in Potawatomi Park for some extra fun.

Ironworks Ice Rink 

Downtown Mishawaka's newest crown jewel is Ironworks Ice Rink. Open during the winter, its ice skating ribbon is very popular with families. You can also reserve spots in the ice bumper cars and on the Icebykes.

Studebaker National Museum

Put on your work jacket and pop the hood at the Studebaker National Museum’s hands-on, interactive exhibit just for kids. The Super Service Center exhibit offers kids the chance to learn how a car works and try their hand at automobile repair. Equipped with tools and life-like sound effects, this exhibit is sure to keep their attention.

Sky Zone Trampoline Park

Head to Sky Zone Trampoline Park in Mishawaka to experience the weightlessness of bouncing and flipping on wall-to-wall trampolines. Kids can also enjoy a game of ultimate dodgeball, a high-flying basketball slam dunk or flying into 10,000 foam cubes.

South Bend Cubs Games

Nothing says summertime in The Bend like the South Bend Cubs. Four Winds Field is more than just a place to watch a ball game – it’s a full-on kid-friendly experience. The splash pad is a perfect place to cool off on hot summer nights and the Fun Zone is a great place to burn off energy.

The History Museum

Kids can get a hands-on look at local history at The History Museum’s Kidsfirst Children’s Museum. It’s complete with a child-sized dining table, chair, bed and other hands-on household items from the period of European settlement in the area. Kids can step back in history here with a glimpse of what life was like when South Bend was just a lightly settled trading post on the St. Joseph River.

South Bend Chocolate Company

Get the inside scoop on how everyone’s favorite treat is made with a tour of the South Bend Chocolate Factory and museum. Don’t forget to try a piece of freshly made chocolate and grab a box to take home. South Bend Chocolate’s downtown South Bend cafe is a great place to fuel up and play. It has a food and drink menu that will please the kids as well as the parents, an indoor play area and the world’s largest chocolate store.

Strikes and Spares Entertainment Center

This is no ordinary bowling alley. Strikes and Spares Entertainment Center offers all types of indoor recreation from black-light mini-golf and go-kart races to bumper cars and mini-bowling, arcade games, and of course, bowling.

Generations AdventurePlex

Head to Mishawaka a whole lot of entertainment in one spot. Generations AdventurePlex features bowling, laser tag, dozens of arcade games and a rock climbing wall. There's also axe throwing for the adults.