Sterling Heights, Michigan, is a major suburb of Detroit that's about 22 miles north of downtown. It is a family friendly community with attractions and opportunities for kids. Even though the big city is just a short drive away, kids in Sterling Heights, which has a population of 129,880, according to the 2011 U.S. Census estimate, won't have to leave town to find enjoyable things to do.
The Indoor Waterpark Recreation Center at the Best Western (sterlinginn.com/hotel/waterpark) provides kids with lots of water fun year-round. With 32,000 square feet, the park features a three-story water slide, lazy river, vortex, geysers, bubble seats, whirlpools and a splash play area for younger children. The Sterling Heights Nature Center (no website; 42700 Utica Road; 586-446-2710) has touch tables with live animals on display. The center also has nature classes, nature walks and movies, all designed to pique the curiosity of young minds.
The city of Sterling Heights (sterling-heights.net) maintains several parks. Chappelle Park (no website; 35748 Ensign; 586-446-2489) has playground equipment, swings, picnic areas, open space and outdoor ice skating in the winter. Clinton River Park North (no website; 8600 Riverland Drive; 586-446-2489) is 82 acres of recreational space with playgrounds, spring riders, hiking trails and picnic areas all resting along the Clinton River. Dodge Park (no website; 40620 Utica Road; 586-446-2489) has two play structures, volleyball courts, outdoor ice skating in the winter and picnic pavilions.
Bowling can be a fun activity for kids. Sterling Lanes (bowldetroit.com/sterling-lanes) provides a family friendly environment making the game fun for all ages. Family specials and youth leagues are offered along with pizza and other snacks. Glow bowling takes place weekly 5-Star Lanes (5-starlanes.com) has 50 synthetic lanes, a restaurant, karaoke, pizza, burgers, games and league play.
Performing Arts Classes
Arthur Murray Dance Studio (arthurmurraymi.com) offers dance classes for kids 6 to 11 years old. It is a drop-in format; no registration is needed. Gotta Dance Studio (gottadancestudios.com) teaches dance to kids in a number of styles such as lyrical, jazz, tap, hip-hip, all star pom, acro, ballet and tap. Anita's Theatre Dance and Performing Arts (anitastheatredance.com) provides kids with acting classes instructing in improv, stage direction, character development and musical comedy. Voice lessons are offered teaching the kids in singing and vocal production. Anita's also offers dance instruction in a variety of styles.