Skip to main content

Best Places to Play Inside in Sioux City & Siouxland

in background, frost and snowflakes. in foreground the words "best places to play inside in Sioux City"

Winter in Siouxland sometimes means frigid temps, arctic winds, and plenty of snow, ice, and slush, but that doesn't we have to stay cooped up! Here are some of my top suggestions for where Sioux City area kids can play indoors when the weather outside is frightful:


Best Free Places to Play Inside in Sioux City 

The Sioux City Art Center

225 Nebraska Street
two small blonde children play with two giant color wheels at the Sioux City Art Center's Junior League Hands On Gallery

  • The Sioux City Art Center consists of 2 buildings, housing permanent galleries, travelling special exhibits, and classroom space. But the best part of the Sioux City Art Center if you're looking for a way to entertain kids on a winter day, is indisputably the Junior League Hands On Gallery. Freshly renovated in 2019, the Junior League Hands On Gallery offers a wide variety of interactive artsy fun for kids, like lightboards a duplo house, foam building blocks, magnet shapes, zoetrope drawing, and much more. 
  • For more information, check out my Sioux City Art Center post, or visit the Sioux City Art Center website.  


The Sioux City Public Museum

607 4th Street
  • The Sioux City Public Museum has a wide variety of exhibits showcasing Siouxland's history from prehistoric days to the present, including focuses on the Native Americans, early settlers, the Sioux City Stockyards, local disasters like floods and the Flight 232 crash. But some of the most fun for kids are the giant sandbox (actually rubber pellets) where they can excavate fossils with paintbrushes, and a cabin with a woodstove where kids can pretend to be pioneers!
  • For more information on the Sioux City Public Museum, visit the Sioux City Public Museum website


The Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center

4500 Sioux River Road
raptor house behind the Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center


  • The Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center has interactive fun and live animals on display year round. Kid favorites include a duplo table with lots of animals, and a huge badger den that little ones can climb inside and use a badger cam to peek at what's happening in the rest of the center!
  • The nature playscape and trails are also lots of fun in winter if it's warm enough for outdoor play, so bundle up!
  • For more info, visit the Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center website


Best Places in Sioux City to Play Inside with an Admission or Other Charge


Pizza Ranch Arcade

3116 Floyd Blvd.
  • Pizza Ranch's brand-new arcade just opened in November 2021 and is home to tons of great games for a wide variety of ages
  • No admission charge, but the games and the food/drink cost money.
  • I'm hoping to visit with my family at some point and will take some pics and write a whole post about as many of the games available as I can at that time!
  • For more information, visit the Pizza Ranch website


LaunchPad Children's Museum

623 Pearl Street
toy grain elevator at LaunchPad Children's Museum in Sioux City


  • LaunchPad Children's Museum is home to dozens of fun exhibits and activities that foster learning, creativity, and fun. Some of my kids' favorites include the mini grocery store area, a super long water table, and a huge climbing area! LaunchPad also hosts educational programming for kids and families almost every day!
  • For more information or to reserve a time, check out my  post about playing at LaunchPad Children's Museum or visit the LaunchPad Children's Museum website.


The Long Lines Family Rec Center

401 Gordon Drive
  • The Long Lines Family Rec Center adjacent to the Tyson Events Center is probably best known for its climbing wall, and with good cause--it's arguably the best rock-climbing wall between Chicago and Denver! But Long Lines also rents out basketball courts, volleyball courts and batting cages, plus hosts Open Gym for Tiny Tots every weekday morning (M-F 8am-noon) free for kids under 7!
  • Check out their website for more info on hours, options, and admission and membership rates. 


Drop Zone Family Fun Center

3840 Stadium Drive
  • Drop Zone Family Fun Center features a trampoline ninja course, laser tag, and more! Prices vary, but a popular option is the $20 deal which includes an hour of jump time, a game of laser tag, and a $5 game card. 
  • Visit the DropZone FFC website for more info on prices and activities!

The Norm Waitt Sr. YMCA

601 Riverview Drive, South Sioux City, Nebraska
  • The Norm Waitt Sr. YMCA in South Sioux City provides Siouxland families with facilities and opportunities for indoor swimming, yoga, basketball and more.
  • For more information on facilities, hours, and admission, visit the Norm Waitt Sr. YMCA website


Plaza Bowl

3091 Hamilton Boulevard
  • Plaza Bowl is Sioux City's only bowling alley on the north and west sides of town and offers a classic bowling experience!
  • For more information, visit the Plaza Bowl Facebook page

Rush Werks

3828 Stadium Drive
  • Rush Werks is Sioux City's bowling alley for the Morningside neighborhood and offers fun options like glow bowling and birthday parties!
  • To find out more about hours, admission, and other details, visit the Rush Werks Facebook page


IBP Ice Center

3808 Stadium Drive
  • The IBP Ice Center offers indoor skating and usually has public skating hours on Fridays and Saturdays evenings.
  • Visit the IBP Ice Center website for more information on hours, prices, and other icy fun.

Best Places to Play Indoors in other Siouxland Communities


KinderZone

1411 Frankfort Place SE, Orange City, IA
  • Indoor playground started by two local moms, Laura and Colby
  • Daily admission is $8 per child 1+, and FREE for babies under the age of 1 and for parents and other adult caregivers.
  • Annual memberships will also be available once they officially open!
  • After long delays in receiving their play equipment, KinderZone is finally opening to the public in February 2022!
  • Full details available on the KinderZone website



Looking for more ideas for winter fun in Siouxland? You might also enjoy my posts on Sioux City Snowday Fun and Snow Sports in Siouxland!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Sioux City & Siouxland Christmas

NOW UPDATED FOR 2021! Christmas is coming! The Sioux City area has so many fun and festive events to celebrate the Christmas season, and this post will be updated throughout the coming weeks as new events and details announced. I'm thrilled to share all the festive fun with you! You might also enjoy my posts on Christmas Road Trips (Christmas fun in Omaha, Sioux Falls, Okoboji, and more!) Christmas Tree Farms in Siouxland , Family Friendly New Year's Eve , Experience Gifts for Siouxland Families , and Last Minute Christmas Gifts You Can Buy in Siouxland ! This post features the best Christmas events in Siouxland, the best places in Siouxland to see Christmas lights , and some of the best places in Siouxland to see Santa ! 

Siouxland Pumpkin Patches

Now updated for 2021! One of the best parts of living right in the middle of some of the world's best farmland is access to amazing pumpkin patches! Here are some of the great pumpkin patches within a 2 hour drive from downtown Sioux City, listed by distance from downtown Sioux City. I definitely recommend checking the website or Facebook page of the patch you plan to visit before heading out this year, as things may change quickly, and some are limiting attendance, requesting mask wearing, or taking other precautions to limit the spread of illness. This roundup has been updated to reflect 2021 pumpkin patch hours, rates, and events, and I will update throughout the season as new details are available. Please e-mail me if you own or operate a pumpkin patch and would like to update your entry or add a patch to our list! Scarecrow Farm Photo used with permission from Scarecrow Farm Location : 1592 Charles Avenue, Lawton, Iowa Distance from downtown Sioux City : 8.7 mile

The Story of Loose Meat Sandwiches

There's nothing better in winter than some cozy comfort food. So, I'm excited to tell you all about Sioux City's signature dish, loose meat sandwiches, along with where to buy them and how to make your own! What is a loose meat sandwich? A loose meat sandwich is, at its core, a loose pile of flavorful ground beef, served on a hamburger bun. Many people refer to it as a tavern or tavern sandwich.  Exact seasoning blend varies by maker, but onion, horseradish, mustard powder, ketchup, pepper, and garlic are common, as is a pickle to top, and it should be loose, not in a patty, and fairly dry rather than saucy like a sloppy joe. History of the Loosemeat Sandwich The loose meat sandwich was created in Sioux City in about 1924, although there doesn't seem to be a clear historical record of who made it first. Miles Inn and Ye Olde Tavern were certainly selling it very early on accordingly to local legend, and it's likely the dish was invented at one or the other. Cho