Fun Days Out With The Family
Colonel George Washington Scott founded Scottdale, Ga. in the late 1800s after the development of Scottdale Cotton Mill. Since then, the area has grown and redeveloped several times, blossoming from a small mill town into a multicultural melting pot that offers a rich history and a variety of dining and entertainment options for all ages.
Being within a 20-minute drive of both Atlanta and Decatur, Scottdale is perfectly located to enjoy all that both cities have to offer, but it also holds its own hidden gems, and without the traffic and hustle-and-bustle of larger cities. Make sure you check out these nearby attractions and events to experience the full scope of everything Scottdale has to offer!
Little Shop of Stories
133A East Court Square
Decatur, GA 30030
Little Shop of Stories is the dreamy, small-town bookstore you dreamt of as a child, if you were a child that also happened to be a book lover. The quirky shop carries books for all ages - even adults! - and interests, including hands-on books focusing on stickers, painting, drawing, origami, building, etc. There's a wonderland of candy and pocket toys at the front counter, and a wonderful community board in the alcove by the bathrooms with flyers for all sorts of classes, services and events. There are comfy chairs and a train table, and the staff is often playing early 90's hits and dancing around behind the counter while they restock books. The do regular story times and book clubs, as well as host birthday parties. Their summer camps are so popular that parents have been known to stand in line in the rain to ensure their children are signed up! Check out their website for a full list of events, including gingerbread house decorating, trivia nights and costume contests!
Fernbank Science Center
156 Heaton Park Drive
Atlanta, GA 30307
The first - and best - thing to know about the Fernbank Science Center is that it is completely FREE! Free parking, free admission! And considering all that it offers, it really is an incredible deal that includes an exhibit hall, observatory and library. The Center also hosts a planetarium, which hosts different star and planet "shows," with admission prices ranging between $5 and $7. Exhibits range from the Apollo 6 to Birds of North America and Live Animals, and special events such as concerts, special observatory hours for rare planetary events and guest lecturers. All of this is in addition to their exhibits that include a lot of hands-on learning modules. Something to keep in mind when you visit: there is no cafĂ© on the premises, so bring your own snacks and sit outside enjoying nature at the picnic tables, as food and drinks aren't allowed inside the exhibit area or planetarium. Check out the Center's website for more information and planetarium and event schedules.
2050 Lawrenceville Highway
Decatur, GA 30033
For parents of young children, Leapin' Lizards is a lifesaver for rainy days or days when you need to get some work done (or maybe even just take a break and read a magazine or book for an hour or two). It's a massive (20,000 square feet!) indoor inflatable playground, with separate party rooms, a special toddler area for especially little ones, hockey tables and open play areas and a snack counter, as well as plenty of table and couch space and free WiFi. Children aged three to 10 are $8 per visit, under two are $5. Parents and babies are free, and there are express cards available at a discount. Things to remember: you must have a signed waiver on file (which you can find on their website), and everyone must wear socks - no shoes or bare toes! Leapin' Lizards also regularly hosts Parents' Nights Out from 6:30 to 10 p.m., which includes pizza and snacks, and is significantly cheaper (and more fun!) than a regular babysitter.
Peachtree-DeKalb Airport/Good Neighbor Day Open House Airshow
2000 Airport Road
Atlanta, GA 30341
Just down the road from Scottdale is a small regional airport with a lot of character, and it's a great place for families with young children to explore and learn! The airport features picnic space and a large playground that is completely free and open to the public year round - and completely gated off from the runway! It's a wonderful place to go have lunch and let the little ones watch all the small places and helicopters come and go. Also check out the two restaurants on the premises - the 57th Fighter Group Restaurant and the Downwind Restaurant - both overlooking the runway. And make sure you don't miss the annual airshow in the spring. Admission is $10 per vehicle for a day full of demonstrations and events from some of the area's most impressive air performers, including stunt planes, parachute jumpers, rides and lots of yummy food and vintage aircraft to explore!
Atlanta Greek Festival
2500 Clairmont Road Northeast
Atlanta, GA 30329
The Atlanta Greek Festival has been an Atlanta-area institution every fall since 1974. Held at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Annunciation, the festival spans for three days in September and includes lots of dancing and singing, lots of food and dozens of vendors, as well as a children's tent and cathedral tours. Children 12 and under are free, and adult tickets are just $5, with free parking and shuttle buses. Be sure to get yourself a Greek pizza and baklava sundae and check out the Alpha-Omega Sound while you're there!