A Date Night During A Family Vacation? You Bet!

Stephanie M. (NDM#544) (7 Posts)

Stephanie was born and raised in Philadelphia PA. She still lives in the Philadelphia area with her husband and 2 young daughters who are 6 and 9. She first visited Walt Disney World with her parents in 1978 when Magic Kingdom was the only park! She reconnected with Walt Disney World in 2007 when she and her husband planned a trip with their first daughter, who was 15 months old at the time. Visiting with her young daughter showed a different side to a WDW vacation and she fell in love with the Disney magic all over again. Stephanie and her family have been back to Walt Disney World every year since and even became Disney Vacation Club members. Stephanie’s second daughter had her first trip when she was 9 months old, so she loves giving vacation planning tips to families with young children. Stephanie also loves dining at Walt Disney World and she is the person in the restaurants taking food pictures! Stephanie is so excited to be contributing to the Disney Driven Life and can’t wait to start sharing tips and experiences!


 

We recently returned from another fantastic family vacation at Walt Disney World Resort. My husband and I were even able to squeeze in a date night! Thanks to the Children’s Activity Centers at located across the resort, we were able to enjoy some adult time while the kids were having a ton of fun!

The Children’s Activity Centers provide supervised fun for kids ages 3 to 12 (kids must be fully potty trained). For example, my kids made character masks, did sand art, made Christmas decorations, colored, watched movies and played games. Dinner was even included for them, so that was one less thing to worry about.

childrens-activity-centers-00
photo via Walt Disney World website

The Centers are generally open from around 4pm until midnight, but check with your center for exact times.  Dinner is served at your choice of either 6:30pm or 8:00pm, and includes selections such as macaroni and cheese, pizza, and chicken nuggets. The cost is $15 per hour with a 2-hour minimum and the centers do offer Annual Pass and Disney Vacation Club discounts.

Children’s Activity Club locations include (you do not have to be staying at these resorts to use the Activity Centers):

  • Simba’s Cubhouse at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge
  • Club Disney at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
  • Cub’s Den at Disney’s Wilderness Lodge
  • Sandcastle Club at Disney’s Beach Club Resort
  • Camp Dolphin at Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel (ages 4-12)

Camp Dolphin at Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel requires reservations, and they can be made by calling (407) 934-4241. Reservations for the other centers are highly recommended and can be made by calling (407) 939-3463. Walk ups may be accommodated based on availability, but I would not recommend trying to walk up as the Centers are very popular!

Safety is very important at the Children’s Activity Centers. When the child is signed in, you must leave contact information and your destination. An alternate contact of someone not in your immediate party is also required. At drop off you designate who can pick the kids up, and that person must show identification – even if it is you picking them up. They also ask for information about any special needs or allergies.

I must admit that the first time we used one of the Centers I was very nervous, especially since one of my kids is on the shy side. I quickly saw that I had nothing to worry about as she walked away from us eager to explore everything that she saw.  The counselors also do a great job in involving the kids and making them feel comfortable.  When we returned, we heard, “Is it time to go already? Can’t we stay a little longer?” and I knew that we had made a great choice.  I have asked my daughters what specifically they like about the activity centers and the responses range from the excitement of making new friends to playing video games (something that is limited at home) to arts and crafts. They do almost all of those things at home, but I think kids love that they get a little independence from us while still being surrounded by Disney magic.

We have used Simba’s Clubhouse when we had a fantastic dinner at Jiko and explored the stunningly beautiful Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. We have also used the Sandcastle Club at Disney’s Beach Club Resort many times for nights at Epcot.  A night out using the Children’s Activity Centers has become something that both the kids and we look forward to and I highly recommend them!

 

Stephanie M. (NDM#544)

Stephanie was born and raised in Philadelphia PA. She still lives in the Philadelphia area with her husband and 2 young daughters who are 6 and 9. She first visited Walt Disney World with her parents in 1978 when Magic Kingdom was the only park! She reconnected with Walt Disney World in 2007 when she and her husband planned a trip with their first daughter, who was 15 months old at the time. Visiting with her young daughter showed a different side to a WDW vacation and she fell in love with the Disney magic all over again. Stephanie and her family have been back to Walt Disney World every year since and even became Disney Vacation Club members. Stephanie’s second daughter had her first trip when she was 9 months old, so she loves giving vacation planning tips to families with young children. Stephanie also loves dining at Walt Disney World and she is the person in the restaurants taking food pictures! Stephanie is so excited to be contributing to the Disney Driven Life and can’t wait to start sharing tips and experiences!

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