Certified by the American Association for Horsemanship Safety, Double M Horsemanship’s instructors lead programs designed to help beginner and intermediate riders feel safe and self-assured in the saddle. Using the Secure Seat training technique, instructors help students get situated atop their horses in the proper form in order to develop beneficial muscle memory. Located on 128 verdant acres, dotted with ancient trees, olive groves, and fossilized philosophers, the ranch enjoys access to more than 44,000 acres of the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge.
My Kids Clubhouse supervisors watch over open play as socked feet scamper through a ball pit and a mesh tunnel opening onto three slides. Across the open-format playroom floor, youngsters as old as 8 direct their own imaginative adventures in a play kitchen, soft-block area, dress-up area, and puppet theater.
Parents can drop their kids off through a secure check-in service, join their progeny on the playroom floor, or sip coffee in the Wi-Fi–enabled Clubhouse Café. In addition to holding open play hours, My Kids Clubhouse hosts two-hour birthday parties, including a slumber party option and a dinosaur-themed blowout with 3.5 billion candles to celebrate the birth of life on Earth.
My Kids Clubhouse founder Stephanie Antin opened her indoor playrooms after a disappointing search for creative play options for her own three children. She teamed up with business maven Jeri Price Smith to open two recreational locations in Poway and Bonita. Child development consultant Debbie Cazares funnels 20 years of education experience, a master's degree in Developmental Psychology, and 10 years of experience as a child to design the most creative and educational programs.
At Inflatable World, a 35-foot slides tower above 40,000 square feet of carpeted space as youngsters cavort among the outdoor park's 12 air-filled attractions. Nestled among the soaring slides, bounce domes shelter leaping tykes and obstacle courses challenge adventurers to navigate obstructed terrain. Themed inflatables in the shapes of dragons, pirates, and saber-toothed tigers host open-play participants, as well as parties and fundraisers. Inflatable World also rents out its stock for events, pairing football enthusiasts with end-zone bounce houses or existentialists with specially deflated items.
The historic fountain at the east end of Balboa Park’s El Prado pedestrian walk is a lure for visitors, thanks to its majestic and cooling spray. But a quick turn to the right is the entrance to the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, another local draw. For the young, it’s a two story, interactive science playground. For the young at heart, there are sophisticated displays, rotating exhibits and the new, NanoSeam IMAX Dome Theater. Films splayed across the 76-foot wraparound screen plunge viewers into the depths of the sea and out into space, through jungles and between skyscrapers around the planet. Resident astronomers also create new shows monthly, using the latest SkyScan System software. The café near the entrance takes care of hungry visitors with a modest menu, a few tables indoors and patio seating in front of the fountain.