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City Guide

Activities for Kids

Ann Arbor Area Piano Teachers Guild

(734) 665-5346

Referral service for prospective students. Activities for students include performance opportunities, student achievement testing, awards competitions, and the summer "Mostly Music Camp". Financial aid available to students for study.,

Ann Arbor Art Center

117 W. Liberty [map]
(734) 926-4128

Cultivates creativity with year-round studio art classes, camps, exhibitions, art parties, corporate team-building events, and much more. Studio and gallery space available for events.,

Ann Arbor Chinese Center of Michigan (Ann Arbor Chinese School)

3800 Waldenwood, King Elementary School [map]
(734) 769-9068

Chinese language classes and cultural enrichment activities, including Chinese yo-yo and orchestra, erhu, Chinese calligraphy, table tennis, Chinese modern dance. Meets Sept.-June, Fri. 7-9:50 p.m.,

Ann Arbor Community Center

625 N. Main [map]
(734) 662-3128

After-school programs, tutoring, and recreation Oct.-May for grades 1-5. Ten-week summer day camp for ages 5-12; programs year round on health, financial, and community awareness for all ages. Call for fees.,

Ann Arbor District Library

343 S. Fifth Ave. [map]
(734) 327-8301

Activities and materials for youth and families year round at the Downtown Library and local branches: Malletts Creek (3090 E. Eisenhower), Pittsfield (2359 Oak Valley), Traverwood (3333 Traverwood), and West (2503 Jackson, Westgate Shopping Center). Playgroups (children under age 2 accompanied by caregivers) and preschool storytimes (children age 2 & over accompanied by caregivers) year round at most AADL locations. Summer Game for all ages offers activities, programs, and prizes. Events include hands-on science activities, crafts, performances, video game tournaments, author and storyteller visits, and musical programs. No charge for library events., (information for children age birth-grade 5).

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Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum

220 E. Ann [map]
(734) 995-5439

More than 250 interactive science and technology exhibits, including a light and optics gallery, a full size ambulance, a three-story rocket, and dedicated preschool room full of exhibits for younger visitors. Special demonstrations and events most weekends. New and traveling exhibitions, birthday parties, field trips, camp-ins, outreach, and distance learning programs. Memberships available. See website for hours and prices.,

Ann Arbor Music Center & Rock Band School

312 S. Ashley [map]
(734) 883-4751

Private lessons in guitar, bass, drums, voice, piano, harmonica, saxophone, clarinet, ukulele, cello, violin, and upright bass since 1998. Rock, blues, and jazz band classes for age 7-adult. Rock and jazz summer camps. All ages and skill levels. Classes daily year round. Instrument repairs and rentals. Custom-made guitars and basses. Workshops, clinics.,

Ann Arbor School for the Performing Arts

637 S. Main [map]
(734) 213-2000

Music school provides private instruction for piano, strings, woodwinds, brass, and voice. Programs include Youth Orchestra Program, the New Horizons Senior Strings Orchestra, Suzuki violin, and jazz combos; group classes include Dalcroze, music play, music theater, children's choir, and more.,

Ann Arbor Suzuki Institute of Music

Mary Lou Roberts, coordinator, (734) 726-0171

Lessons for children in violin, viola, cello, bass, and guitar. Shinichi Suzuki's model is based on how children acquire language, learning from the environment, with parental support, and a positive approach. Teachers are trained in high level performance as well as Suzuki pedagogy and early childhood concepts.,

Ann Arbor Young Actors Guild

P.O. Box 79, Whitmore Lake 48189
(734) 926-5629

Theater opportunities for beginning to experienced actors age 8 through college with professional directors and teachers. 5 full productions per year; workshop-style auditions for inclusive casting. 2-week summer camp at the U-M Student Theatre Arts Complex.,

Ann Arbor Youth Chorale

1100 N. Main, Suite 201B [map]
(734) 996-4404

Two auditioned choirs, (Descant Choir and Concert Choir), for boys and girls, ages 9-16. Both choirs perform annual winter & spring concerts locally. Concert Choir occasionally tours nationally and internationally. Sept.-May.,

Ann-Hua Chinese School

P.O. Box 130212, AA 48103

A non-profit, 501(c)(3) community education resource. Offers Chinese language and cultural classes for K-12 and adults. Courses are designed for heritage and non-heritage students. Meets Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Washtenaw Community College (4800 E. Huron River, Carne Liberal Arts & Science Building, 2nd Floor). Follows AAPS calendar. Chinese New Year celebration, Moon Festival celebration, and summer activities, including summer camp for ages 6-12. Online registration available.

Boy Scouts of America Southern Shores Field Service Council

1979 Huron Pkwy [map]
(734) 971-7100

Indoor and outdoor activities for Cub Scouts (grades 1-5) and leadership activities for Boy Scouts (grades 6-12). Call or email for referral to a troop in your area.,

Boychoir of Ann Arbor

1100 N. Main [map]
(734) 663-5377

Choral performance, vocal training, and music education for boys ages 8-18. Two choirs perform classical, sacred, and secular music in local concerts and at area community events, weddings, and private functions. Auditions by appointment year round. Camp in June.,,

Bryant Community Center (Community Action Network)

3 W. Eden Ct. [map]
(734) 477-0292

Supervised after-school educational and recreational programs for grades K-12. Five-week summer day camp for grades K-5 features swimming, reading, activities with dogs, art, games, and field trips. Free toy library for all ages. Call for fees, schedule, and eligibility requirement information. Scholarships available.

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Buhr Park Children's Wet Meadow Project

Jeannine Palms, (734) 971-5870; Andy Brush, (734) 973-9161

Children helped create and continue to care for this educational site and ecosystem, which acts as a filter for storm-water runoff and supports a diverse habitat of plants and animals. Projects open to all ages.,


Suzanne Smith, director and teacher. Cello instruction for all levels, from beginner to conservatory prep. Students gain "a deeper trust in their abilities, enjoy making music, and achieve high levels of concentration." Summer CelloChanWoods retreat.

Domino's Petting Farm

3001 Earhart [map]
(734) 998-0182

Ponies, alpaca, goats, pigs, sheep, chickens, peacocks, lambs, cows and a donkey. Open 7 days a week from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Adults & children $5, Senior (60 and above) $4.50 and children under the age of 2 are free. Open year round. Pony rides on most weekends. Birthday parties and picnics. Group rates.,

En Nuestra Lengua

Free Spanish-language literacy program for Spanish-English bilingual children with Spanish-speaking parents. Programa de alfabetización y cultura para niños bilingües cuyos padres son hispanohablantes. During the school year, offers Saturday morning classes for children grades pre-K to 3rd at Bach Elementary School, 600 W. Jefferson. Staffed by native Spanish speakers trained as teachers.,,

4-H Youth Programs (MSU Extension Washtenaw County)

705 N. Zeeb [map]
(734) 997-1678

Programs for ages 5-19 include animal care, arts, crafts, gardening, horses, nutrition, natural resources, community service, and leadership. 4-H Youth Show, last week in July, offers animal and still project judging contests, prizes, and many other activities. Also, outreach programs for at-risk youth. $10 yearly participation fee; some costs for activities., (click on 4-H)

Gallup Park River Kids

3000 Fuller [map]
(734) 794-6240

Exploratory program for ages 2-6 (with caregiver) using kayaks, paddleboats, and canoes, plus fishing and storytelling. Call for dates and times; $52-$64/per child per month.,

German School of Ann Arbor

3540 Dixboro Ln., Go Like the Wind Montessori School [map]
(734) 995-0313

German language and culture classes, taught mainly in German, for ages 3-16.,

Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan

444 James L. Hart Pkwy, Ypsilanti [map]
(800) 497-2688

Six age divisions for girls ages 5-18. Activities include camping, leadership and career exploration, and community service. Call to volunteer, join, or start a troop.,

Great Lakes Zoological Society's World of Discovery

6885 Jackson [map]
(734) 332-1628

Conservation and rescue center with an indoor zoo featuring reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates, birds, and other exhibits. $8 ages 12 and over; $5.50 ages 3-11 and seniors; ages 2 and under and members free. Daily 10 a.m.-6 p.m.,

JCC KidZone (Jewish Community Center)

2935 Birch Hollow [map]
(734) 971-0990

After-school Kid's Club, for K-5 (some transportation available from local schools), offers hands-on activities, outdoor play, sports and games, homework club, and more. JCC Scouts (Grades K-8), leadership and skill-building club meets Sun., holds periodic campouts and other outdoor adventures, engages in hands-on and community service activities. Enrichment classes offered year-round, including sports, arts and crafts, cooking, and more. Monthly Kids' Nights Out/Parent's Night Off on Sat. offer variety of fun and games in supervised setting. School's Out Days, Vacation Days, Snow Days and Summer Fun Days programs feature field trips, guest presenters, kid-centered organizations, and other hands-on programs.

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Korean School of Ann Arbor

2251 E. Stadium, Tappan Middle School [map]
(734) 973-1830

Korean language and culture taught in English and Korean. Sept.- June, Sat. 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Open to all, age 4-adult.,

Leslie Science & Nature Center

1831 Traver [map]
(734) 997-1553

Educates and inspires children and adults to discover, understand, and respect their natural environment. An independent nonprofit, LSNC conducts environmental education programs for all ages, birthday parties, day camps, and field trips for school groups and scouts, all incorporating the park's 50 acres of fields and forest trails. Programs also feature LSNC's non-releasable educational birds of prey and other animals. Buildings and firepits available to rent for parties, meetings, and other events. Grounds, trails, & raptor enclosures open daily, free of charge. Contact for Critter House open hours and upcoming events.,

MPulse Summer Performing Arts Camp

1100 Baits, 1281 Moore Bldg., School of Music, Theater, and Dance [map]
(734) 936-2660

U-M faculty teach this summer performing arts program on campus for students entering grades 9-12 and graduating seniors. This residential program offers two-week programs in music performance, performing arts technology, theater, and dance. Three-week program for musical theater open to students entering grades 11 & 12. Check website for fees and program details; scholarships available.,

Music For Little Folks

(734) 741-1510

Gari Stein, founder & director. Community music school based in traditional folk music for chidren from infancy to 5 years and their grown-ups. Sing With Me meets Tues. & Wed. mornings Sept. Jan & April. Join anytime. Sessions include 4 CDs, snack & chat, independent instrument time, and Process Art exploration. Nurturing Baby & You scheduled per interest.,

Music Together

(734) 929-2133

Music and movement classes for young children and their parents or caretakers. Classes come with songbook/CD and include singing, movement, rhythmic rhymes, and instrument play. Classes for mixed ages (birth-5 years), big kids (ages 5-7), and babies (birth-8 months), held at various Ann Arbor area locations; see website for calendar.,

Neutral Zone

310 E. Washington [map]
(734) 214-9995

Youth-driven teen center for grades 9-12, which offers programs in the visual arts, music technology, community leadership, education, and literary arts. Drop-in activities include tutoring, pool, ping-pong, art studio, computer lab, and a recording studio. Weekend events (sometimes a cover charge) include live music performances, DJ parties, movie nights, and poetry slams. Drop-in activities and tutoring are free; program fees vary (scholarships available). Hours during the school year are Mon.-Thurs. 2:30-8 p.m., and Fri. 2:30-6 p.m. with special events on Sat. & Sun.,

Peace Neighborhood Center

1111 N. Maple [map]
(734) 662-3564

After-school tutoring and clubs for elementary and middle school students. Also, a year-round college and career exploration program, homework help, counseling, health seminars, teen recreation, and family enrichment programs. Six-week summer day camp on site for children entering grades 1-9. All activities free, except $75/family for summer camp.,

Pittsfield Township Parks & Recreation

701 W. Ellsworth [map]
(734) 822-2120

Offers a wide variety of recreational programming year round, for all ages to foster active and healthy lifestyles, build relationships, and create a sense of community. Programs designed specifically for preschoolers, youth, teens, adults, and seniors. Programs highlights include; Peewee and youth soccer leagues, Youth T-ball league, swimming, tennis, after school programs, dance, special events.,

Rec&Ed (Ann Arbor Public Schools Department of Community Education and Recreation)

1515 S. Seventh, Pioneer High School, "E" wing [map]
(734) 994-2300

Classes and sports leagues for preschool through high school offered year round after-school, evenings, and weekends. Instructional classes include art, dance, languages, gymnastics, LEGO robotics, martial arts, music, chess, and sports (see Youth Sports). Summer camps for children in preschool-high school. Call to receive youth sports mailings, scholarship information, or quarterly catalogs.

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Safety Town (Ann Arbor Public Schools Rec&Ed)

2135 Runnymede Blvd., Dicken Elementary School [map]
(734) 994-2300 ext. 53106

Educational summer program helps children learn safety awareness using a child-size mock Ann Arbor that children explore on bikes. Curriculum covers bike helmets, stranger danger, fire safety, riding a school bus, pedestrian safety, and more. For children entering kindergarten or first grade in the fall. Scholarships available. Week-long sessions offered 4 times in June and July. Safety Town program 9 a.m.-noon; optional extended care & afternoon camp 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.

Scrap Box

581 State Circle [map]
(734) 994-0012. Recorded info: (734) 994-4420

Parents and children of all ages can browse through a warehouse of materials for arts and crafts projects ($5/small bag, $7.50/large). Birthday parties and workshops by appointment. Tues.-Fri. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Call for holiday hours.,

Talking Colors Art School

2230 Pontiac Tr., Rudolf Steiner High School [map]
(734) 680-3532

Art education for students age 6 and up. Summer camp, after-school, school break, homeschool, portfolio preparation.,

U-M Museum of Natural History

1109 Geddes [map]
(734) 764-0478

Guided and unguided tours for school groups. Outreach programs, planetarium shows, birthday parties for children, and educational programs for families and adults. Free admission; donations welcome. See also the listing in the Libraries, Museums, & Galleries section. Mon.-Sat. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Sun. noon-5 p.m.,

U-M Matthaei Botanical Gardens & Nichols Arboretum

(734) 647-7600

Matthaei (1800 N. Dixboro) offers self-guided or docent-led tours and daytime and evening classes for adults and children of all ages, and Thurs. evening scout programs. The Arb (1610 Washington Hts.) offers self-guided tours sunrise to sunset, and tours and scout programs by appointment. For more information, see the Recreation listing.

U-M Youth Ensembles

1100 Baits, 1281 Moore Bldg., School of Music, Theatre, Dance (SMTD) [map]
(734) 763-1279

Michigan high school students in grades 9-12 (string players in grades 7-12) may audition for the Michigan Youth Symphony Orchestra, Michigan Youth Band, Michigan Youth Jazz Improvisation Ensemble, Michigan Youth Women's Chorale, and Michigan Youth Chamber Singers. All ensembles conducted by SMTD faculty. Auditions for the 2014-2015 season Sept. 14, 2014. Weekly rehearsals Sun. afternoons Sept.-Mar. Concerts in Nov. & Mar. See website for information and fees.

Wild Swan Theater

6175 Jackson, Suite B [map]
(734) 995-0530

After-school theater classes, summer drama camps, and participatory workshops for students in grades K-12, including activities designed for participants with disabilities. Also hosts performances geared for family audiences at Towsley Auditorium, Washtenaw Community College.,

Xtreme Bounce Zone

82 Aprill, Suite C [map]
(734) 761-3242

Playground filled with six huge inflatables. Drop-in play and party rentals (bring your own food). $5/child age 5 and under, $7 age 6+. Mon. & Wed. 10 a.m.-8 p.m., Tues. & Thurs. 1-8 p.m., Sat.-Sun. 12:30-4 p.m. Also, "Toddler Take-Over" Tues. & Thurs., 10 a.m.-1 p.m., $3, and "Kidz Night Out," age 8 and up, $15, includes pizza and drink, Fri. 7-10 p.m.


400 W. Washington [map]
(734) 996-9622

Preschool programs for ages 2 1/2-5 include dance, swimming, martial arts, and gymnastics. Programs for youth ages 6-11 include after-school care, summer camps, dance, swimming, gymnastics, indoor soccer, basketball, flag football, netball, volleyball, floor hockey, and martial arts. Teen programs for ages 12-17 include after-school, Youth Volunteer Corps, Youth in Government, summer camps, dance, swimming, martial arts, and fencing. Financial assistance available. Program details, rates, and registration online.

Related Topics:

Young People's Theater

331 Metty, Suite 3 [map]
(734) 222-4006

Professional quality theater productions for grades K-12. Acting, voice, and dance classes, workshops and private lessons. Summer performing arts camps.,

Yourist Studio Gallery

1133 Broadway [map]
(734) 662-4914

Working studio offers after school clay classes for students ages 8-11 at all levels. Classes Sept.-June.,

Youth in Harmony

(734) 445-1945

Vocal music education and introductory singing for grades K-8. Four-part barbershop chorus for middle and high school students offers performance opportunities at clinics and festivals. Scholarships available. More information for high schoolers at,

Zap Zone

4177 Carpenter [map]
(734) 930-6670

Laser tag, bumper cars, cannon blaster, arcade. Birthday and group parties. Mon.-Thurs. 4-10 p.m., Fri. 3 p.m.-midnight (June-Aug.: Mon.-Thurs. noon-10 p.m., Fri. noon-midnight), Sat. 10 a.m.-midnight, Sun. 11 a.m.-10 p.m.


115 E. Liberty (inside Robot Supply & Repair) [map]
(734) 761-3463

Writing center offers students ages 8-18 drop-in tutoring Mon.-Thurs. 3:30-5:30 p.m., in-school tutoring, field trips, workshops, writing labs, help with student publications, and one-on-one help for English language learners. All programs free.,

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