Highland Park is a neighborhood in the northeastern section of Los Angeles. While you may be more familiar with some of its neighbors such as Eagle Rock and South Pasadena, you’ll want to plan some time to explore Highland Park, because you’ll find many family-friendly things to do here.
Arroyo Seco Regional Library
6145 N. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90042
The Arroyo Seco Regional Library, a part of the Los Angeles Public Library System, is open seven days a week (though it does have limited hours on Sundays). Families will definitely want to check out one of the “LA Plays” kits. Each kit contains a toy, a book, and a list of related activities for families to do together at home. Additionally, the library offers a number of special events and activities including story times, arts and crafts, and more. Check the website for a calendar of upcoming events.
Highland Park Recreation Center
6150 Piedmont Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90042
The Highland Park Recreation Center offers many different programs and activities after school as well as during the summer and winter for kids of all ages. You’ll find basketball courts, a baseball diamond, children’s play area, picnic tables, lots of open space to run, and more here.
Los Angeles Police Museum
6045 York Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90042
“The mission of the Los Angeles Police Museum is to collect, preserve, exhibit and interpret the history of the Los Angeles Police Department.” Families will find a number of artifacts including photographs, documents, a helicopter outside (that kids can sit in!), police vehicles, badges, uniforms, and much more. The Los Angeles Police Museum is open Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm and on every third Saturday of the month from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. General admission (ages 13-61) is $9, seniors (62+) are $8, and children 12 and younger are free.
6240 E. Meridian St., Los Angeles, CA 90042
At Garvanza Park, families will find a children’s play area, a baseball diamond, and a skate park. Younger kids can run, swing, slide, and climb while the older kids practice their skate moves.
5604 N. Figueroa St., Highland Park, CA 90042
If you feel like escaping to another world for a bit, then treat the family to a movie at Highland Theatres. Three movies are offered at a time, so be sure to check the website for a current listing of showtimes. Upcoming films include the family-friendly Peter Rabbit. Keep in mind that this isn’t a fancy theatre; so make sure the kids are prepared for a no-frills type of movie-going experience.
Galco’s Soda Pop Stop
5702 York Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90042
Galco’s is “devoted to the art of soda pop.” You’ll find more than 700 flavors of soda here. Or, have some fun at the Creation Station where you can make your own soda. Choose the flavors, add carbonation strength, and viola — a custom-made soda. Galco’s history dates back to 1897 when it was an Italian grocery store. Now, it is on a “mission to support small soda makers.” They are open seven days a week.
5107 York Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90065
Donut Friend is where “donuts are done differently.” Even the pickiest eaters will find a donut that appeals to them here. You can select from some of their popular picks or if none of those tempt your taste buds, you can select a “d-i-y donut.” Customers select the donut, the filling, and topping to create a customized donut. (Keep in mind that they’re closed on Mondays).
Highland Park Bowl
5621 N. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90042
Established in 1927, Highland Park Bowl is recognized as “L.A.’s oldest bowling alley.” Families will want to visit earlier in the day, because after 8:00 pm guests must be 21 and older, and in fact, many families may find this bowling alley is best shared with older teenage kids. This isn’t your usual bowling alley; you’ll find many antiques and nods to the bowling alley’s past here. They also offer pizza, salads, and side dishes if you get hungry while playing.
York Boulevard Park
4956 York Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90042
York Boulevard Park is a bright and colorful play spot for young children. Children and parents will appreciate the soft, bouncy safety floors built into the play area. This park does get busy because it’s close to so many restaurants and shops on popular York Boulevard. While you won’t find much grass here, you’ll find creative slides and climbing spots, as well as musical instruments for kids to play (like a giant xylophone). And a bit of trivia — this playground is on the site of a former gas station.
Rock Rose Gallery and Production Studio
4108 N. Figueroa St., Highland Park, CA 90065
Rock Rose Gallery and Production Studio was established in 2000. “Adults and youth alike are invited to learn about the arts experience. Enjoying presentations as well as participating in hands on workshops.” Current classes include a Latin Percussion Class, Crochet Class, and more. They also host special events and art shows. Check the website for details.
The Awesome Playground
5158 York Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90042
The Awesome Playground is a children’s play space. Their play space is designed for children (infants up to age 8). Open play is $8 per child and is available on weekdays. Children will enjoy the little toy cars, the dress-up area, the slides, and more including a bounce house out back.They also host birthday parties, Parent’s Night Out, and special classes. Check the website for a calendar of events.
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