Breckenridge with Kids: A Perfect Family Day

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Breckenridge with Kids: A Family Vacation

Alamy

You may think of Breckenridge as a winter sports playground, but its off-season activities are a well-kept secret. If you are planning a trip to Breckenridge with kids not only will you enjoy the cool summer breezes of this town, but you will also be amazed with the ample offerings you will find here that are perfect for a family vacation with kids.


Morning


Yum, Pancakes!

Begin your day with breakfast at Daylight Donuts. Yes, it's a donut shop, but they also serve the cheapest breakfast in town. Daylight is a local favorite where you will find those locals who would prefer not to pay for the more expensive Main Street boutique restaurants. Pancakes are plate-sized, and omelets are thick and filling. The eggs rancheros are a tasty favorite! Avoid bellyaches and save money by sharing entrees.

Daylight Donuts, 305 N Main St, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-453-2548; 6AM-12PM

The Carter Museum

Time at the Edwin Carter Museum gives you a chance to digest breakfast while stimulating the mind. Having heard there was gold to be found, Carter came to Breckenridge in the late 1800s. He wasn't misinformed. But when he saw what mining did to the local wildlife, he was dismayed and disgusted. The mercury and cyanide used in mining caused disturbing mutations. Observe the mural on the museum wall. Look at the baby goat. After careful observation you'll notice that the goat has two heads. Carter worried that the continuation of mining would destroy all of the local animals. Concerned that future generations would never see the animals that once roamed the land, he taught himself taxidermy. His specimens played a key role in the development of the Museum of Nature and Science in Denver. The Carter Museum, with its interactive exhibits and life-like stuffed animals, provides visual stimulation for young and restless minds. The museum is just a few blocks from Daylight Donuts.

Edwin Carter Museum, 111 N Ridge St, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-453-9767, 800-980-1859; Tue-Sun 11AM-4PM; Free, donations appreciated

The Peak 8 Fun Park

If you are coming to Breckenridge with kids, you simply cannot miss the Peak 8 Fun Park. Your kids will whiz down an alpine slide built into the mountain terrain. But you won't run out of things to do here! Kids love the Mineshaft Maze, a two-level labyrinth. You don't have to tell them that they are learning strategy and directional skills. Super Bungee trampoline jumping is for kids over 30 pounds. Lighter kids can jump for joy in Riperoo's Bounce House, a jumping castle. Elite skiers and snowboarders use jumping and trampoline training as a form of off-season training (your kids might like to know that). If you want to teach them about the effects of high altitude, take them to the Super Putt miniature golf course where the thin air makes the golf balls fly at high speeds. Getting to the Peak 8 Fun Park is half the fun. Take the free bus to the Peak 8 Super Chair, and take the chairlift to the top of Peak 8.

Peak 8 Fun Park, parking at N Park Ave, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 800-536-1890; Jun 18-Sept 6 9AM-5PM; $50 for half-day, $60-65 for whole day (depending on date)


Afternoon


Empire Burger

What kid wouldn't smile at a burger and a chocolate milkshake? Empire Burger (http://www.empireburger.com/) is the perfect stop on the best family vacation in Breckenridge. If burgers are not your thing, there are veggie burgers, portobello mushroom sandwiches, and chicken fingers. Empire Burger is located in La Cima Mall, home to a number of kooky shops and boutiques. Explore the area before heading to your next attraction. If you're feeling short of breath, the O2 Lounge offers aromatherapy oxygen infusion which, according to their website, is safe for all ages. There's a selection of board games, a flat screen TV, and Internet access. Their computers have editing capabilities for tailoring your family photos and videos.

Empire Burger, 520 S Main St, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-453-2329; 11AM-1AM

The O2 Lounge, 500 S Main St, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-453-6262. Hours vary by season; call for more information.

Next, check out Stage Fright. The shop boasts an extensive collection of movie posters, collectible action figures, and costumes for kids and adults. These well-made products are sold in limited quantities. Dress your toddlers in infant sugar plum fairy or Star Wars R2-D2 costumes. Older kids will like the Batman or Cinderella ensembles. Most items cost between $20 and $50.

Stage Fright, 1655 Airport Rd, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-547-4465

Now that your kids are in a dress-up mood, head over to the Breckenridge Welcome Center. The second floor features a free, kid-friendly exhibit.

The Welcome Center

The Breckenridge Welcome Center doubles as a museum. The building was once called the Bailey Building. During the demolition process, the contractors discovered a 19th century log cabin, which was hidden between two newer additions to the building. They decided to incorporate the cabin into the Welcome Center structure. It now serves as a mini movie theater where films about Breckenridge history are shown throughout the day. The second floor has a typical, 19th century kids' room where children can count imitation gold pieces and dress up in Victorian garb. Kids get a giggle when they discover that the elaborate dresser actually hides a kid-sized potty!

Breckenridge Welcome Center, 203 S Main St, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 877-864-0868; 10AM-6PM daily


Evening


Breckenridge family vacations aren't complete until you enjoy a family bonding, pizza-sharing experience at Giampietro Pasta and Pizzeria. A large pie costs about $14, and toppings are about $2 extra. Then if time, energy, and planning permit, head over to the Backstage Theatre. Over the summer, the company presents children's productions on alternate weekends. Peter Pan, for example, will be staged in the summer of 2011. What a perfect ending to the best family vacation in Breckenridge! Your children will hardly be able to wait for the next day's adventures!

Giampietro Pasta and Pizzeria, 100 N Main St #212, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-453-3838; 11AM-9:30PM daily

Backstage Theatre, 121 S Ridge St, Breckenridge, CO 80424; 970-453-0199; Hours and prices vary by show and event (call or check website for more information).

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