Downtown Dallas may swell with professionals during the workday, but there’s more to the area than just business (eating and shopping, for example). Families can find an abundance of activities — most of them free — that are guaranteed to keep little ones entertained.
Museums are a great starting point, with the majority participating in Kids Club, which hosts six arts-and-crafts-based events a year. Nasher Sculpture Center encourages artistic exploration at Target First Saturdays, as does the Crow Collection of Asian Art with its Asian Adventure, also on the first Saturday of each month. Dallas Museum of Art mixes it up with First Tuesdays, which is aimed specifically at children 5 and under, while an extensive list of classes and workshops keeps everyone engaged.
The Art Lab at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science gives youngsters an extra hands-on experience during their visit, while Discovery Days is something the whole family can look forward to. You can even museum-hop, riding the free D-Link bus around downtown.
The D-Link will also whisk you over to the Dallas Farmers Market, where you can enjoy live music each Friday while you shop. The student and volunteer-tended Mama Ida’s Teaching Garden makes nutrition, math, and science fun, and partners with North Texas Food Bank to donate its harvest to Dallas’ homeless population through Family Gateway. On the second Saturday of each month, Walkabout with a Chef lets an expert guide you around the market, sharing recipes and explaining how best to shop for ingredients.
Another free form of transportation around down is the M-Line Trolley, a nostalgic streetcar that links downtown and its Arts District to Uptown and the West Village.
Over at Old City Park, Dallas Heritage Village brings history to life, re-creating our city from 1840-1910 through authentic buildings and furnishings. Every second Wednesday of the month is Nip and Tuck’s Barnyard Buddies, a program for little historians where they read a story, do an activity, then explore the village.
Reading is only one of the pastimes at J. Erik Jonsson Central Library, though sometimes that does come with a side of boogie woogie for kids six and under. Music classes, crafts, and Sunday family movie matinees are all on the monthly calendar, ensuring that you and your family will never be at a loss for something fun to do in downtown Dallas.