Logan, Utah, is home to Utah State University. There are mostly two types of citizens who live in Logan: Those who have lived here for generations and those who are staying here temporarily for university studies. The second of these may have young children and wonder what they can do with them during the summer when school is out.
I define young children as elementary-aged children and younger, or 5th Grade or 10 years old and younger. I consider young families those whose youngest children are still within this age range, no matter how old the oldest children in the family are, because there is often a certain amount of short attention-span (or need to change activities often) and skill and safety level that needs consideration when venturing out when you include children of these ages, even when they are included with a group of older siblings. Nevertheless, these activities are good for the whole family (except the teen night mentioned below, which is reserved only for teens).
For those new to Logan, I highly suggest starting at Cache Valley Visitors Bureau, located at 199 N. Main Street in Logan.
The workers are friendly and very helpful, especially if you can tell them what types of activities you have an interest in, whether it be hikes, museums, restaurants, indoor activities, or playgrounds. There are many brochures for you to take home so that you may plan and prepare for your excursions.
While you are at Cache Valley Visitors Bureau, hop across the street to 160 N. Main Street to pick up a lanyard for collecting “Brag Badges”.
Brag Badges are colorful plastic badges that are collected on a ring on a lanyard. The whole purpose of this community program is to get children off electronics and back outside. Their incentive is collecting. Every year the activities offered are different. Go to www.weplayunplugged.com and go to the Cache Valley page for a list of activities, badges, and sponsors to choose from.
This program is set up for kids in 7th grade and younger. I pull along my high schoolers, and we make it a family outdoor activity. At first my children complained and fought that they didn’t want to do it, because they thought it would be boring. However, we started by earning 3 badges in one day. That took us out of the house for a couple of hours, and the kids LOVED it! They looked forward to doing more. An example is “Make an Outdoor Fort and bring a picture with you at your fort to THIS (specified) sponsor to collect your badge”. We took a hike on the river trail, drew sidewalk chalk pictures, learned how to play the ukulele, learned fancy jump roping, visited a neighborhood mini-library, and played in splash pads. It got the kids out, we learned about things we could do in our area, and I found out about businesses that were gems that I may never have otherwise discovered on my own.
When my sister visited our family with her two young daughters for two days, we got them their own lanyards, took them to our favorite activities, and they went home with their own small set of brag badges to remember their time with us.
I would say a perfect day would include earning a few brag badges and then ending the adventure with a hard-scooped ice cream cone at BJ Buckets! BJ Buckets, 55 W. Center St. in Logan (behind Great Harvest) has 16 delicious flavors to choose from, and they fill the inside of the cone with ice cream! Sugar cones, regular (aka “cake”) cones, and (for a minimal price) sweet homemade waffle cones are available.
On extremely hot and dry summer days, it is fun to picnic at the side of a splash pad. A scrumptious drink that is sure to quench your thirst next to the splash pad of choice is Dole Whip Freeze, found at BJ Buckets, 55 W. Center St. in Logan (behind Great Harvest). Dole Whip Freeze is a drink combining Dole Whip and Sprite or Orange Fanta. BJ Buckets has Dole Whip, a non-dairy frozen soft serve found at Disneyland and originating on Oahu, in 3 flavors: Pineapple, Strawberry, and Orange.
Grab your Dole Whip Freezes at BJ Buckets, then head on over with your towels and sunscreen to one of these splash pads found in Cache Valley:
NEW! Wellsville, 75 E. 100 S.
Hyrum, Salt Hollow Park, 350 W. 100 N. 7a-8p
Millville, SouthPark, 450 E. 300 S. 10a-8p
Providence, Alma Leonhardt Park, 310 W. 250 N. 10a-8p
North Logan, Meadow View Park, 300 E. 2750 N. 10a-8p
NEW! Preston, ID, Preston City Park
PARKS & PLAYGROUNDS
These are my favorite parks and playgrounds. The parks include playgrounds that provide plenty of activity for the young and young at heart. They also include lots of room to just run around and play group games on lots of grass. They are also on my favorites list because of all the trees providing shade. My favorite parks are:
Merlin Olsen, 300 E. Center St., Logan
Adam’s Park, 550 N. 500 E., Logan
These two (below) that I label as playgrounds are the kind that have been donated to and built by the neighborhood. They are the ones that are large structures to use imagination in as you run around and climbing on them. They are:
Ryan’s Place, 400 S. 600 E., River Heights
Adventure Park, 290 N. 400 E., Logan
This next one is definitely a park, and originally I had it under my favorite parks. I separated it, because it is located on a block that you could spend all day at. Willow Park has trees and picnic areas and room to run, and it is next door to Willow Park Zoo. The zoo is small, but charming, and relaxing, and the kids enjoy spending time there with all the birds walking around the grounds. Just down the road is the Cache County Fairgrounds which has a shallow stream running through it that children like to roll up their pants and play in. Right across from the fairgrounds is Logan Aquatics Center. I will include some of these in this article, so for the purpose of listing my favorite parks:
Willow Park, 419 W. 700 S., Logan
You know what would be perfect after playing at any of these parks? Getting a shake (or malt!) at BJ Buckets, 55 W. Center St. in Logan (behind Great Harvest). Every ice cream flavor in the dipping cabinet (16 of them) can be made into a hard-scooped shake, made with Farr’s ice cream. Talk about flavor-packed! BJ Buckets also makes specialty shakes, with candy added to the shake. Eat it outside on their quaint porch seating or in their charmingly-decorated shop!
EASY, IN-TOWN (or very close) HIKES
Hiking with young children can be a lot of fun. It gives them an opportunity to love being in nature, especially if you take the time to help them discover joyful treasures. You can make one hike trail a different experience every time you hike it, with a little forethought. HERE is a list that I found with great ideas for making a hike an adventure that teaches the joy of nature. Remember to bring water and plan to pack out what you pack in. These are three wonderful local and easy hikes to take with children which are close to town:
Logan River Trail by Golf Course
From Hwy 91, turn West at the 100 W. light (South side of Logan, by Wal Mart)
L @ Golf Course Road
At about 220 W, make a U turn and park alongside the road by Rivercrossing Townhomes. Trail starts west of the townhomes, heading south.
The 1 mile trail is paved and shaded. At the bridge, it’s fun to play Pooh Sticks (On “GO”, each person drops their stick from the bridge, then runs to the other side of the bridge to see which stick appears from under the bridge first.) Plenty of photo ops along the trail.
River Trail by Stokes Nature Center
Go East on 400 North (Hwy 89) from Main Street (Hwy 89/91)
Approximately 1 mile into Logan Canyon, parking found on north side of Hwy 89 by the wooden Cache national Forest sign, just east of this area along the south side of Hwy 89, or a limited number of parking spots directly at the entrance to the River Trail, adjacent to the metal gate.
Stokes Nature Center is one-third mile up the trail.
Go East on 1800 North from Main Street
1800 N. makes a jog and becomes 1900 N.
Keep following it to the canyon.
After you enter the canyon, pass Bonneville Trail, then park in the first parking lot. The trail starts at the end of the parking lot.
Or, pass the first parking lot, and 0.6 miles later park on the side of the road. The trail is on the right, and the cave is on the left, which is really just a cavity in a rock about 100 feet off the road and can be seen from the road.. The road is paved, but the trail is
You know how after a hike you are hot, tired, and want something cool to eat? Come to BJ Buckets (behind Great Harvest) and share a Date Night Bucket (or two) with your family. You get a large brownie or cookie sandwiched between 12 scoops of ice cream, a topping, and (if you want) whipped cream! A great way to celebrate a long walk together!
Cache County Fairgrounds
450 S. 500 W., Logan
The picture to the left is taken in part of Willow Park, but it is perfect to give you an idea of what the small river at the fairgrounds looks like. It’s a great place to bring a picnic and wade in. The water is a couple feet deep and does have a gentle flow.
Logan Aquatics Center
451 S. 500 W., Logan
Monday 12:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Tuesday – Saturday 12:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Sunday 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
$5 admission free over 3 y.o. (spectator $2)
,Along with these two waterslides, Logan Aquatics Center has a lap pool, a large wading pool, and a deep diving pool with a low and a high board, and you are allowed to do fancy dives from them if you know how.
There’s umbrella’d (haha, I think I just made that word up) tables and a fairly large grassy area for waiting or relaxing or picnicking Outside of the park’s fence there are couple covered areas with picnic tables large enough for groups, and more lawn.
After spending time in the sun and water, your mouth is screaming out for ice cream and pizza! Lucky you, you can get both at BJ Buckets! What? Pizza at an ice cream shop? Yes, it’s true! We have partnered up with Firehouse Pizza. They gave us the oven and the makings. We assemble the pizza when you order it and cook it right at our shop! You can order it ahead (435) 535-3076 or order it when you get there. Pepperoni, Hawaiian, and (of course) Cheese pizzas are available. We do carry soft drinks in individual bottles. Topping it off with a bucket of ice cream rounds off the night to being just perfect!
Hwy 89 and Canyon Rd.
At mouth of the canyon. Peaceful. Beautiful spot for a picnic. Grass, trees, tables. Splashing, but too cold for swimming. A dock to view large fish. Ducks and geese. Start of Bonneville Hiking Trail.
Hwy 89, 4 miles into mouth of the canyon, just past 1st Dam and Bridger Campgrounds
On right. Looks like a large gravel turnout. Gravel road 0.5 miles off paved road.
Very pretty, right next to the river, and lots of trees. Popular place for wading, tubing, and small campfires. Free camping spots available. (Bridger Campground spots are $17)
Hyrum State Park and Reservoir
6263 S. 600 W., Hyrum
9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
$8 person / $4 Seniors / $3 Walk-In
Campground: $20/$25 per site or $60 for cabin
Boating, camping, playing. Visit their site HERE.
Stokes Nature Center
2696 E. Hwy 89, Logan
(Hwy 89 is also known as 400 N. in Logan)
There is a very gentle hike along the river to get to Stokes Nature Center. They prefer nobody drives up, but there is road access (with permission) for those who are injured or disabled. It is a hands-on museum that children love. They also have free shows with live birds or snakes with advanced appointments. In addition, they hold events that do have admission fees. You can find out about upcoming events on their blog HERE.
Willow Park Zoo
419 W. 700 S., Logan
Monday – Thursday 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Friday – Saturday 11:00 am – 5:00 p.m.
$3 adult / $2 ages 3-11 y.o. / under 3 is free
Willow Park Zoo is small, but relaxing for the adults and fun for the children. There are plenty of birds walking about, and it’s just a pretty, relaxing, safe place to hang out. They offer summer camps and Merit Badge Nights. Find out more on their facebook page HERE.
American Heritage Center
4025 Hwy 89, Wellsville
June 2 – August 20
Tuesday – Saturday 11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
$7 adults / 6 children & USU students
Intermountain Herbarium, Utah State University
3503 Old Main Hill, Logan
From Main Street in Logan, turn East onto 400 N. (Hwy 89)
Left on 1200 E.
Left on Aggie Blvd.
Left on Bullen Hall
Left on 600 N.
The Junction, in the basement
Tuesday – Friday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, Utah State University
650 N. 1100 E., Logan
May 5 – Sept 2
Tuesday – Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Something fun to end your museum experience, with your right brain all stimulated, is to buy Clown Sundaes at the end from BJ Buckets. It’s delightful, and you may even want pictures! It is known for being the free clown sundae on your birthday, but you can buy one anytime!
Logan City Library Movie Nights
255 N. Main St., Logan
Free. Popcorn provided
Monday at 6:30.
(435) 716-9123 or CLICK HERE for list of upcoming movies.
After a movie, you aren’t necessarily ready to just hop right home. You want to talk over your feelings and reactions and insights. The perfect place to do that is just 2 blocks south of the Library at BJ Buckets. I suggest sharing the Brownie Bombshell, a large brownie topped with 4 scoops of ice cream and a topping! It’s huge, and extra scoops of ice cream can be added for just 65 cents, so that every person gets their own scoop in their own flavor choice.
2297 N. Main, North Logan
…is Logan’s discount theater. A regular movie for each person is $4 a ticket, all day. These are the movies that were just released (or are about to be released) from the full-price theaters. They have excellent concession prices.
$5 Tuesdays at Megaplex Movie Theaters. We have three of them!
535 W. 100 N., Providence (these streets are on Logan’s street grid)
You can’t see it from Main Street.
University Stadium Theaters
1225 N. 200 E., Logan (take street between Home Depot and the mall. Theater will be on right.
2450 N. Main, North Logan (still on Logan’s street grid)
It’s tricky to find the driveway to the parking lot the first time.
Musical and Stage Plays
Old Lyric Repertory Company
28 W. Center, Logan
(435) 797-0822 or UPCOMING
BJ Buckets is just across the street from Old Lyric Repertory Theater, behind Great Harvest. They are open later in the summer to accommodate theater patrons. Stop by for a sundae! Then break out into song and dance, just like the play you just came from! At BJ Buckets, you are welcomed to have fun!
Four Seasons Theater Company
520 S. 250 E., Smithfield
This is a community family theater company whose performances are held in the theater at Sky View High School, on the south edge of Smithfield.
For upcoming shows and auditions, visit their webpage HERE.
INDOOR FUN CENTERS
Teen Tuesdays at Logan City Library
255 N. Main St., Logan
FREE activities really are geared to teens! Every once in awhile they will throw in an airsoft war. Once it was Zombie Apocalypse around the library! They know how to Teen!
The Jump Zone
1510 N. 200 W., Logan
$10 / $5
It’s a trampoline park. Pricing according to size and charge per hour, each hour after the first is less expensive. Best to just go to their website for pricing and hours, HERE.
George S. Eccles Ice Skating
2825 N. 200 E., N. Logan
$5-10, depending on age and equipment needs Prices
Fun Park & The Gutter Bowling
255 E. 1770 N., Logan
11:00 a.m. – 10:00 pm.
(435) 792-4000 or Prices ($2.50-$10, depending on activity)
Roller Rink, Laser Tag, Arcade, SoftPlay Jungle Gym, Bowling, and Billiards
Each activity has its own price.
Bounce N’ Slide
1077 W. 130 S., Logan
Around $8 Times & Prices
Filled with giant inflatable slides, inflatable obstacle courses, and bounce houses.
Logan Lanes Bowling
1161 N. Main St., Logan
When you are finished,
find yourself at
55 W. Center, Logan (behind Great Harvest)
for more fun atmosphere
and a variety of
ice cream treats! You’ll be glad you did!