We all know that mums are great at finding fun things to do with their children – they seem to know every softplay area and every event taking place within a 30 mile radius of Milton Keynes.
But what are dads supposed to do when they are left to entertain their little thrill-seekers for hours on end? Don’t panic as Celebrate:MK editor Jon Boyle has got your back with 10 local ‘daddy day’ ideas for your toddler that you can both enjoy…
1) PLANE-SPOTTING AT LUTON AIRPORT
Stick with me on this one. Yes, this hobby is about as likely to get my son Eddie a girlfriend as body odour when he’s older but, like many toddlers, he loves planes.
There’s an emergency access lane you can drive down behind Luton Airport where you can park up right next to the runway to watch the planes taking off and landing.
You can find it off the intersection of Dane Street and Chiltern Green Road. It’s just a 20 minute drive from MK and, the best part is, it’s free!
2) PLAYTIME AT BREWDOG BAR
Now I understand that I’m not going to win any parenting awards for this one – and Brewdog may well kill me for publicising it if the place is suddenly overrun with toddlers – but the brilliantly cool bar near The Hub has got it sorted for us dads.
I can enjoy a delicious pint of Clockwork Tangerine while Eddie does some colouring, roams the amphitheatre-style steps or plays Connect Four with me, while sipping his juice.
3) CULTURE AT MK GALLERY
After a trip to Brewdog, I like to redress the balance by taking Eddie to MK Gallery for some culture. He can view the art, explore the lovely range of kids’ books, and Kaspa’s is next door!
4) FOOD SHOPPING AT LIDL
Don’t get me wrong, this is not my idea of a great first date. But Eddie loves the mini trolleys for children and he is better at food shopping than me.
5) PLATTER FOR 2 AT FLOOTES
Eddie likes sharing lunch with me at this lovely Woburn cafe and I like it too because he lets me eat 80% of the food.
6) BIG MATCH AT MK DONS
I took Eddie to his first ever professional football match at MK Dons a few weeks ago as Stadium MK is a nice, safe environment for a three-year-old.
He ended up watching YouTube Kids on my phone but I think that was more in disappointment than boredom as the Dons lost 4-0 to Peterborough.
7) FUN AT GULLIVER’S LAND
Last year I bought Eddie an annual pass for Woburn Safari Park but this year I opted for one at Gulliver’s Land instead. For £89 each we get access to all the parks, rides and shows. In autumn and winter the MK park is mainly open only at weekends and in school holidays.
8) CAR HEAVEN AT CENTRE:MK
Eddie likes the new softplay outside Mothercare but it is the new arcade car outside McDonald’s, and the cars I can push him around the centre in, that really rev him up.
9) MATURE TALK-TIME AT OLD WETHERSPOONS
Wetherspoons is a favourite place for 3-year-olds, just like 73-year-olds. We have a nice, mature man-chat over his sausages, beans and chips.
10) SOFTPLAY AND IPADS AT DAVID LLOYD CLUB CAFE
I drink lattes while watching him live his best life. Easy parenting!
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your ideas for fun local days out with kids, or to let Jon know what you think of his 10 daddy day ideas.