345 West 6th AvenueEugene, OR 97401 (541) 345-3391

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Kids' Activities

Hit the trails, discover wildlife, explore local history or dive into fun at an area swimming pool. Inside and out, kids activities are easy to find in the Eugene, Cascades & Coast region.



Eugene is an active outdoor town and most of the time we don't notice a few sprinkles. But sometimes a downpour can get you down, especially when the kids are bouncing off the walls. Here are a few rainy-day destinations worth exploring:

Not Just For Shopping

For families seeking room to romp that is out of the weather, malls are a magnet. Valley River Center offers wide open space under cover. Ever heard of "mall walking"? Well, one lap around the mall is .65 miles, so you can cover almost 3 miles by circling the mall four times. There is also a free children's play area for kids under 42-inches tall. Cushioned benches for parents line the enclosed carpeted play space featuring regionally-themed climbing structures. But even better, take the escalator to the Adventure! Children's Museum on the second floor. This hub of interactive exhibits and creative play is the perfect way to spend a rainy afternoon.

A. Helfrich Outfitter

  • Phone: 541.726.5039

Whitewater rafting on the McKenzie River, an hour from Eugene. Drift boat fishing year-round whenever - wherever it's best for trout, salmon or steelhead. Special touches by experienced, personable guides will make for an unforgettable experience. Large group discounts. Holiday gift certificates available.

Alton Baker Park

Ranked #20 of 175 things to do in Eugene

  • Address: 100 Day Island Rd
    Eugene OR 97401
  • Phone: 541.682.4800

Comprised of 402 acres (163 ha), Eugene's largest riverfront park hosts year-round festivals, running and walking races, and community events. Visitors can enjoy 230 acres (93 ha) of natural area, a fenced off-leash dog park, Cuthbert Amphitheatre, Pre's Trail, the Nobel Peace Park, and the Eugene Science Center. There is also an 18-hole disc golf course (12 holes during special events). Easy access to the Ruth Bascom Riverbank Path System with a 12-mile (19-km) path. Free maps available at www.eugene-or.gov/parks. Fish for trout, salmon, steelhead and bass. Wheelchair accessible.

C&M Stables Oregon Coast Horseback Riding

  • Address: 90241 Hwy 101 N
    Florence OR 97439
  • Phone: 541.997.7540

C&M Stables offers horseback riding on the beautiful Oregon Coast beaches and dunes. Conveniently located just north of Florence and south of Sea Lion Caves, a variety of horseback riding experiences are available for beginning, intermediate and advanced riders. Choose an adventure that fits your style -- Beach Rides, Dune Trail Rides, Morning Adventure Rides and Sunset Beach Rides. Operating since 1981, C&M Stables has approximately 50 horses to match any rider and ensure everyone has the most enjoyable and memorable experience possible. Call 541.997.7540 to make a reservation today.

Water Sports & Fishing

You've probably heard it's wet here! And yes, we do get seasonal rain which along with snow melt feeds a tremendous number of lakes, rivers and creeks as the water rushes to the Pacific Ocean. The result is some pretty spectacular water sports.

WHERE TO PADDLE, FISH AND SWIM

  • Shoot the rapids or cast out a line on the world-famous McKenzie River
  • Float gently down the Willamette River right through Eugene-Springfield
  • Sail across Fern Ridge Reservoir
  • Pull up a crab net from the docks in Florence
  • Water ski at Dorena Reservoir in Cottage Grove
  • Row across Dexter Reservoir during a championship regatta
  • Paddle the Siltcoos River water trail through coastal wetlands and sand dunes
  • Tube the wave pool in Springfield
  • Swim in Waldo Lake , one of the clearest lakes in the world

Jet Boat Tours

Race up one of the region's larger rivers, cruise across a lake or charge ocean waves in a jet boat. Guaranteed to add extra thrills to your scenic tour, jet boats are a comfortable way to explore the region's waterways with speed, spray and excitement. Because a jet boat sucks up water and then forcefully expels it to move forward rather then using a propeller or motor, jet boats are aptly suited for maneuvering shallow waters like rivers. Without external moving parts, jet boats are also regarded as safer for swimmers and marine life.

Combine a jet boat tour with fishing, hiking and wildlife watching.

Marinas & Boat Ramps

Launch your boat at a boat ramp or dock at a nearby marina to re-fuel or settle in for the night. Darling's Marina & RV Resort on Siltcoos Lake, the largest coastal lake in the state, offers year-round moorage, camping and opportunities to catch a large variety of fish including perch, catfish, trout and steelhead. In Historic Old Town Florence, the recreational marina on the waterfront provides visitors with a boat ramp, fuel dock, river access, and hundreds of moorage slips.

At Fern Ridge Lake, just 10 miles (16 km) west of Eugene, boaters will enjoy their newly renovated marina where you can rent a slip or launch your boat and enjoy this popular lake, known for its northerly winds which create perfect conditions for sailing. Other nearby marina and boat launching locations include Dorena Lake in Cottage Grove and Dexter Lake in the town of Lowell.

Rivers

Oregon's rivers are known for world-class white water rafting and fly fishing adventures. Countless waterways crisscross the county, cascading down mountain slopes as spectacular waterfalls, and filling numerous lakes and reservoirs . With so many rivers here, there is also an extraordinary concentration of preserved covered bridges .

On the McKenzie River, thrill seekers charge its white water corridors; while in town local brewmasters credit the McKenzie's purity as an important factor in Eugene's phenomenal beer scene. With easy access from multiple riverfront parks, fish or float the beautiful Willamette River right in the heart of Eugene - Springfield!

In Historic Old Town Florence take a river boat tour up the Siuslaw River, or out into the ocean for crabbing and fishing. Other notable Eugene, Cascades & Coast waterways include Mohawk, Long Tom, Fall Creek, Little Fall Creek, Camp Creek, Horse Creek, Coyote Creek, Mosby Creek, Poodle Creek and Tenmile River.

Local river guides offer a variety of year-round water tours by jet boat , drift boat, raft or kayak. Check the current water levels for Oregon's rivers.

Animals, Birding & Wildlife

Observe wildlife in natural environments or have amazing animal encounters at dedicated animal sanctuaries. Whale watch along the scenic Oregon Coast, bird watch at local ponds and estuaries or spot raccoons, opossum, beavers, porcupines, skunks, deer, elk, wolves and black bear along hiking trails and in parks .

Downhill ski, snowboard or cross-country ski in the Cascade mountains – just one hour from Eugene! From Eugene, drive or take a bus to the slopes. Before heading out, check the ski report, weather and road conditions . You can also stay in the Oakridge/Westfir area, only 30 minutes from the slopes, or along the McKenzie River .

 

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