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Old 02-12-2013, 05:05 PM   #1
HookedOnDiz
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Things to do in the Ohio, Indiana, Chicago area

We are driving to Chicago from New Jersey this summer and will have a few days to take our time traveling on either side of the stay in Chicago.

Can anyone recommend some interesting things to stop and do along the way? We have four kids... 9, 7, 4, and 1.

Thanks!
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:15 PM   #2
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Although pretty close to Chicago, kids your age might enjoy Fair Oaks Farms.
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:16 PM   #3
mom of2
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Cedar point in sandusky OH
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:28 PM   #4
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In Indiana
Fair oaks farm ....I think they guarantee that you can see a calf being born... If you want to

Exotic feline rescue center ...may be too intense for small kids, especially at feeding time. This is one of our favorite places. One of the few, I believe, in the U.S.

Wolf Park - I have not been here but hear that it is neat

The children's museum in Indy - world famous and something for everyone!

Children's zoo in Fort Wayne, In

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway (home of the Indy 500)

Cincinnati zoo and Newport (KY) Aquarium

Indianapolis is just a really nice, clean family friendly city. Not huge or overwhelming.
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:51 PM   #5
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Cleveland has a nice science center, the rock n roll hall of fame, a cool new aquarium. The Toledo Zoo is a nice zoo. Cedar Point. The Ft. Wayne Zoo is nice. Sauder Village in Archbold Ohio (not far off the turnpike, almost to Indiana) is a nice little living history type museum. In Port Clinton, there is a drive thru safari. There have been some good deals on groupon or living social for tickets to this. Shipshewana in Indiana is Amish Country. They have a huge flea market, Amish farms, bakeries, furniture. There are sand dunes in Northern Indiana. Can't remember the name of it, but it's pretty cool as well. Have fun!!
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:07 PM   #6
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Cedar Point.

Just south of Detroit- The Henry Ford Musuem and Village.
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:56 PM   #7
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In Indiana

Exotic feline rescue center ...may be too intense for small kids, especially at feeding time. This is one of our favorite places. One of the few, I believe, in the U.S.
This looks so neat and on our way to visit family in MI, I'm going to push dh to stop and visit! Thanks!
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Old 02-12-2013, 07:10 PM   #8
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Not sure if you will be passing Wisconsin but border to Illinois on Kenosha is the Jelly Belly Factory
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Old 02-12-2013, 07:31 PM   #9
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I second the Children's museum in Indianapolis. Very awesome. My kids have gone a lot of times and still love it.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:21 PM   #10
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I live in Toledo, which is right off toll 80/90 DEFINITELY stop at Cedar Point- to not to shouldn't even be an option. You'll never feel the same about an Orlando roller coaster again CP is a world leader as a thrill park. Toledo is a decent midwest city, we have a pretty good zoo- Parent Magazine put it in the top 10 for kid-friendly zoos several years back.

If you drive further up 80/90 you will hit Shipshewana IN, which is a big Amish tourism spot. They have a HUGE swap meet on the weekends as well as the standard quaint Amish shops, restaurants, and goods.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:28 PM   #11
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Ceder Point while it is great. Is not family friendly. We are less then 2 hours away and we don't take our kids there. Toledo zoo is only 10 min off of the turn pike. It's a nice zoo, but it's a zoo. We just got back from Chicago, our family loved Lego land, Shedd aquarium, and Science and Industry.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:40 PM   #12
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All of Chicago's museums are first class - with younger kids, I would go with Shedd Aquarium, or the Museum of Science & Industry. Lincoln Park Zoo is another good place for little ones. Also, as mentioned the Children's Museum in Indianpolis is top notch.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:48 PM   #13
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The Indy children's museum is great, Conner Prairie is a favorite for many as well.

Holiday World is wonderful though quite a ways off your route.
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:49 PM   #14
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Ceder Point while it is great. Is not family friendly. We are less then 2 hours away and we don't take our kids there. Toledo zoo is only 10 min off of the turn pike. It's a nice zoo, but it's a zoo. We just got back from Chicago, our family loved Lego land, Shedd aquarium, and Science and Industry.

No, it's not Disney, but there are plenty of rides for kids and CP has parent ride swap like Disney. We take our 6 and 4 year-old there all the time Different Strokes for different folks
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:53 PM   #15
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I live in Canada and 3 times a year we drive to Dearborn Michigan to

go to the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield village. We also have a Toledo zoo membership and I think it is one of the best in the country. Also the aquarium in Newport KY is worth a drive. If you go to the Shedd aquarium only buy tickets for the main level, I think they are $8 a piece, you have to ask about this as they are trying to sell you the $35 ticket package. I found my young kids, 3 and 5 and 9 were bored after a hour doing the first level---really how much fish can you look at. Check out the reviews on tripadvisor and you will read the same thing. .
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