With about 25% of island residents being zero-17 years old, there is great incentive to support youth on Bainbridge. The community supports children through Parks and Recreation programs, green spaces, beaches, playgrounds, trails, schools, and various businesses catering to families and youth.
Bainbridge is a wonderful place to visit with kids. It is also a wonderful place to raise them. Here is a list of must-sees, maybe check-it-outs, and mostly freebies.
Battle Point Park
If you have never been to the island, you will think you are getting lost. Trust the GPS.
The first thing you will notice is the amazing playground! (It is in the process of a restructure right now...)
Battle Point Park is host to a Disc Golf course and tons of geocaches! There is an rink for roller skating and roller hockey- FREE to the public, a 1 1/2 mile flat trail for walking/running/biking that passes beautiful trees, a bountiful pea patch, and a duck pond. The loop is level and perfect for kids learning to riding their bike or just gaining endurance. Dogs allowed on leashes.
For a longer walk, the Battle Point trails connect to both the Grand Forest, and on the other end, the Fairy Dell trail takes you down to the water on a meandering singletrack.
The park has grass fields, baseball/softball fields, and turf fields. Look up in the tower by the turf and you may be lucky enough to see an Osprey fly from its nest.
There is an observatory that hosts a ton of events for all ages. And picnic tables and picnic structures for parties and gatherings.
In the summer, the park is home to Music in the Park & Movies in the Park.
The Aquatic Center:
The Aquatic Center is an indoor swimming center and boasts a two-story waterslide, two diving boards, a rope swing, a frog slide, a lazy river, a small tot pool, and a hot tub open to kids on Friday evenings. The pool offers birthday packages, lessons, and movie "float and float" nights monthly.
Check the schedule for pricing and open & family swim times.
Bainbridge Island Kid's Museum, the "KiDiMu":
The KidiMu offers STEM mini-classes, live music and sing-a-longs, mini-mu programs for babies and tots and a ton of interactive play & learn activities throughout. KiDiMu also hosts kid's birthday parties and a plethora of summer camps and evening events. Searching for a gift? Hit up the gift shop.
KiDiMu offers FREE first Thursdays and maintains a list of monthly events online. Family Memberships for folks seeking to come often are the best deal.
Bainbridge Island Museum of Art, BIMA:
Walking off the ferry, you crown the hill onto Winslow Way and the Museum is the first building you see.
BIMA offers FREE admission daily and welcomes children with an interactive Scavenger Hunt, encouraging exploration throughout the museum.
The museum brings in an abundance of cultural events, art, movies and music. Their Day of the Dead events are not to be missed (pictured below).
BIMA offers free drop-in Art, some Saturdays at 11:00. Join teaching artists in one of BIMA’s light-filled galleries to experience hands-on projects designed for all ages.
To top it all off, the BIMA Bistro is a wonderful place to grab lunch or a coffee and snack, offering outdoor seating seasonally.
Outside the museum, the landscaped gardens and waterfall stepping stones are a delight for children and offer a great spot to indulge in a picnic lunch from home or items gathered at the Town & Country Grocery Store across the street.
The BIMA Gift Shop is a treasure of locally crafted art, prints and jewelry along with that perfect gift for the hard-to-shop-for loved one.
Open Gym for Kids:
Ages 6 months to 5 years:
Come join other kids in a fun and open atmosphere. The Transmitter Building is located in Battle Point Park and is generally open 9AM-noon, Monday-Thursday and on Saturdays.
$8.00 drop-in fee
$32.00 for 5-visit punch card; $64.00 for 10-visit punch card
For Anyone Ages 6 and up:
Open Gym is located at the Bainbridge High School Gymnastics Room. $5.00 tax included drop-in fee
Check the Parks and Recreation Gymnastics schedule for most current information.
Island Fun for Kids:
Walk in the Grand Forest after a rain with boots on! (Keep a watch out for owls and woodpeckers)
Visit the Island Rock Climbing Gym
Walk the Labyrinth at Hall's Hill
Visit the Kid's Clothing/Consignment Store Lollipops Children's Boutique & pet the store bunny!
Jump off the Point White Dock
Watch or skate with the skateboarders at the Strawberry Hill Skate Park
Explore and BBQ at Lytle Beach (street end of Lytle Road)
Launch a Kayak from a beach at any island road end
Walk the main downtown dock
Walk the isles of Calico Toy Shoppe
Check out the Free Teen Nights and Middle School Maker Mondays at BARN (the Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network)
Cool off at the Mouse Fountain at Lynwood center (Coupled with frozen yogurt from Island Cool; Coffee from the Boathouse for adults)
Pet the cats and kittens at PAWS in Lynwood Center
Play pinball and Pacman at Westside pizza
Go to Owen's Playground, Fay Bainbridge and Eagledale Park, to name a few.
Watch the goats and alpaca play on the farm at the corner of Mandus Olson and New Brooklyn
Explore Bay Hay & Feed: Ask to see the turkeys! the baby chicks! And ride the old carnival horse
Grab a book from one of several dozen mini libraries throughout the island
Explore the bunkers, beach, and graffiti at Fort Ward Park
Visit the Library and gawk at the fish tank! Or cozy up in the kid's reading nooks downstairs
DO NOT MISS THE 3RD OF JULY STREET DANCE or THE 4TH OF JULY FESTIVITIES IN DOWNTOWN WINSLOW
Experience the FREE Monday evening track meets for all ages in the summer on the high school track!
Ok! I love this place. This is more than just a day trip, I'm moving to the island!
The public schools are highly regarded as top performers nationally with various class styles, including Spanish-Immersion, Multi-Age, Commodore Options High School, and Running Start to name a few. Additionally, there are Waldorf, Montessori, Religious, and special program schools such as The Island School and Hyla. There really is something for all types of learners on Bainbridge.
Preschools include, but not limited to:
Madrona - Waldorf
Public Elementary Schools:
Public Middle/Junior High:
Bainbridge High School (BHS)
If bowling is your thing.... you will have to go to the mainland.
Need more ideas? VisitBainbridge.com