When it comes to eastside family fun in metro Detroit, why not consider Clinton Township? Whether your kids are wacky for Whirlyball, crave some candy treats or hanker for a little local history (complete with family-friendly projects and events that’ll make ‘em forget they’re actually learning), this Macomb County town has it all. Here’s a taste of what’s in store.
- Address: 21570 Hall Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-469-2800
- Hours: 11 a.m.-10 p.m. daily through Sept. 4, 2016; call for other seasonal hours
Go-karts rule the roost at this play haven that has Indy Karts, Grand Prix, Bumper Cars, Turbo Karts and more. Bowling and a two-story arcade mean there’s oodles to do in the cold months, too.
- Address: 37051 Gratiot Ave., Clinton Township
- Phone: 248-443-5300
- Hours: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday-Saturday, closed Sunday for private parties
- Costs: $10/child, free/adults and infants under 12 months with the purchase of a drink
This drop-in play center has a cool Detroit theme and is best for ages 1-8. The cafe offers coffee, lattes, smoothies and other snacks, including gluten-free and vegan options. Imagination and pretend play are emphasized.
- Address: 44650 Garfield Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-286-8700
- Hours: 11 a.m.-midnight Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Friday-Saturday, noon-midnight Sunday; hours are seasonal, call in advance
- Costs: $2-$3/game, varies based on day of week and time; $18/hour for cosmic bowling Friday-Saturday nights 8 p.m.-2 a.m.
With 80 lanes – half of them bumper-abled – the fun is sure to keep on rolling at this kid-friendly center. Every other Friday night – and every Saturday night – bowl under the cosmic lights.
- Address: 44595 Enterprise Drive, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-203-0500
- Hours: 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Sunday (hours may vary on holidays)
- Costs: $9/ages 2-plus, $4/ages 12-23 months, free/under 12 months and adults, $2/unlimited laser maze play
What’s not to love about this kid-and-parent play haven? This local jungle-themed indoor play center franchise has tons of fun for kids, plus a separate space for toddlers. Did we mention it’s also got interactive sensor games, a sports court and laser maze? Don’t miss this one.
- Address: 35335 Gratiot Ave., Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-791-5560
- Hours: 6-10 p.m. Wednesday-Thursday, 6 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday, noon-2 a.m. Saturday, noon-6 p.m. Sunday (open for special events/groups of 20-plus anytime by appointment)
- Costs: $8/one game, $14/two games, $17/three games
Step into this dual-level, 11,000-square-foot laser tag arena for a futuristic, heart-pounding experience. “Tread carefully through mist-enshrouded passageways and a Stardock Hanger spaceship that challenges players of all levels,” the venue’s site notes. Keep in touch with teammates with the REALTIME™ radio system, and play the hottest new arcade games. You’re sure to leave this facility seeing lights.
- Address: 44323 Reynolds Drive, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-463-9500
- Hours: year-round: 5-10 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; April-November: noon-10 p.m. Saturday, noon-6 p.m. Sunday; December-March: 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday
This indoor field offers more than 20,000 square feet of paintball action in a climate-controlled facility. Lone Wolf features high-end artificial turf on the ground, heart pounding speedball action and tons of spectator viewing – including a second story observation deck and private party rooms. Private games require an advanced reservation. And don’t forget to stop-in the pro shop to check out the latest gear and gadgets.
- Address: 44575 Garfield Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-445-7348
- Hours: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Thursday
Since opening in 2006, this venue’s focused on local heritage – and has plenty of kids’ programming that ties in with its themes. You’ll typically find exhibits here from late September through early May. It’s situated on the scenic grounds of Macomb Community College.
- Address: 44575 Garfield Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-286-2141
Why not make a day of it? Right next-door to Lorenzo, the Macomb Center offers theater fall-spring, from big-name touring shows to local dance, orchestral and theater groups. Watch for family shows, too, plus during the summer months you can participate in drama and instrumental workshops.
- Address: 17420 Hall Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-226-0330
- Hours: 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday; hours may change during the holidays – contact for more details
This breezy outdoor shopping area is anchored by Nordstrom, Carson’s, Apple and an MJR Digital Cinema 14 – plus close to 90 other neat shops and restaurants. Be sure to frolic through the pop jet fountains when it’s warm. Check out Wellness Wednesdays, every Wednesday during the summer (weather permitting), 9-9:45 a.m. in the Mall’s Center Court where participants can engage in free yoga and Zumba. And listen to live music while you stroll Thursdays through Mondays during the First State Bank Summer Sound Concert Series, going on through Sept. 5, 2016.
- Address: 23770 Hall Road (M-59), Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-468-4300
- Hours: Guided tours by appointment only; call to schedule. Self-guided “Stop & Shop” tour available any time the candy shop is open.
Remember Pecan Torties and Sanders Hot Fudge Cream Puffs? Well, this is the home for both! At the big Bavarian-looking building on Hall Road, you and the kids can take a free tour to peek at the sweet assembly line – from the 180-foot observation walkway – and savor a sample.
- Address: 35020 Klix Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-790-5501
- Hours: Open skating: 7:30-11 p.m. Friday evenings
- Costs: $5/person, $3/blades, $2/skates
Interested in some old-fashioned fun at the skating rink? Bring the family in for open skate, offered here once per week. This center also has a youth roller hockey program.
- Address: 19781 15 Mile Road, Clinton Township
- Phone: 586-792-4190
- Hours: noon-2 a.m. daily by reservation only
Call and set up a time to let loose at this wacky game that’s been dubbed “the world’s only totally mechanized team sport” – a mash-up of basketball, hockey and jai-alai. This 12,000-square foot space is the place to give it a spin. Ages 10-plus.
This post was originally published in 2012 and has been updated for 2016.