Family time is more important than ever. It seems like everyone’s lives keep getting busier and busier — mom, dad and even the little guys. Take a break from working overtime and let the kids skip soccer practice so you can have a family day.
We love the city of Dearborn for so many reasons. It’s fascinating history — especially in the automotive world. Lovely scenic spots with covered bridges and views of the Rouge River. But the best part about living in Dearborn is that it’s a great place to raise your kids.
Whether you’re a visitor here or a long-time resident, we doubt you’ve visited all the kid-friendly attractions our city has to offer. With that in mind, we’ve assembled a little list of the top things to do with your kids here in Dearborn. Try one or try them all — we just want to make sure that your family comes first:
- Dearborn’s City Parks
- The Henry Ford
- Rouge River Greenway Trail
- Camp Dearborn
- The DISC
- Fair Lane Estate
- Arab American National Museum
- Family Breakfast at TRIA
Dearborn’s City Parks
Dearborn has proudly preserved over 400 acres of land for their residents and guests to enjoy. Take your kids and spend a day in one of our 40 parks. There are several play lots with colorful playground equipment, covered shelters for a family meal in the outdoors and beautiful nature trails for a healthy stroll through the community. And when it’s hot outside, just swing by one of the community pools or splashpads. Your kids will have a blast staying cool and goofing around.
One of our favorite parks is Ford Field Park. This picturesque little spot has a quaint covered bridge your kids can explore. Bring a canoe and paddle around the pond or launch off into the river for a quiet adventure. A nearby outfitter can provide you with a boat rental if needed.
The Henry Ford
By far the most popular attraction anywhere in Michigan is The Henry Ford. This massive indoor and outdoor museum complex is actually four attractions in one. There’s so much to do that your kids won’t have time to feel bored. Pack the whole complex into one day or spread it out over several. It’s designed to not only educate, but also get kids excited about learning.
The four attractions housed within The Henry Ford include:
- Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation: This is a museum to honor the curious mind of the inventor. Take a trip through past innovations and explore future dreams. Genius comes in all shapes and forms and you can learn the stories of some of the greatest American minds.
Take a freedom ride on the bus made famous by Rosa Parks. Or hop aboard a genuine Allegheny Steam Locomotive from 1941. Ever wondered what Ford’s assembly line was like? Let your kids get hands-on learning building a Model T. It’s such a fun and unique experience that you’ll be planning your return trip before too long.
- Greenfield Village: Imagine being able to tour the last 300 years of America’s history. Our country has changed so much, from architecture to technology. Greenfield Village is an 80-acre journey through the history of our nation. Historic landmarks from across the country were brought here brick by brick. These give visitors a firsthand look at some of the most influential times and places.
See where Thomas Edison made some of his most incredible discoveries at his Menlo Park laboratory. Or visit the bicycle shop where the Wright brothers first experimented with flight. There’s also unique outdoor play areas and the opportunity to tour the village in a vintage Ford automobile.
- Ford Rouge Factory Tour: Ever wonder how they make Ford’s iconic truck, the F-150? Get a glimpse at a modern, working factory floor. This plant has been in operation since Henry Ford was building the Model A. At one point, it employed over 100,000 workers.
The tour highlight’s the facility’s historic past and educates about the manufacturing process of today. Your kids will enjoy seeing robotic tools and human engineers working side by side.
- Giant Screen Experience: Experience a larger-than-life film at the IMAX theater housed at The Henry Ford. See stunning films which both educate and entertain. Take a tour through our national parks or dive into the deep sea. They also feature classic films. Click here to see show times and purchase tickets.
Rouge River Greenway Trail
See the best of Dearborn on this two-mile trail through some of the city’s most scenic spots. The Rouge River Greenway Trail is kid-friendly and not too strenuous, giving your whole family a little outdoor adventure. You will hike or bike across the Lower Rouge River and pass Henry Ford’s historic estate, Fair Lane.
The trail eventually turns into Hines Park Trail, which continues for another 17.5 miles. If you’re willing to go a little farther, other attractions like the historic Nankin Mills are scattered along the path. You may even see vintage cars along the route.
Although it’s located in nearby Milford, Camp Dearborn is owned and operated by the city of Dearborn. If you and your kids want to have an extended stay in the great outdoors, they’ll love this location. Bring your tents or RV and find your own piece of wilderness. The camp includes a lake for swimming as well as a heated pool. There’s hiking, arts and crafts, sing-alongs and even a weekly talent show.
You can book a reservation today for this popular destination.
The DISC, or the Dearborn Ice Skating Center, is where local hockey stars and figure skaters go to show their stuff. You can watch a hockey game or see some beautiful competitive figure skating in action. Or, go to the DISC during public skating times so your kids can enjoy some time on the ice.
Fair Lane Estate
Dearborn’s most illustrious citizens, Henry and Clara Ford, lived the last 30 years of their lives in a beautiful estate called Fair Lane on the banks of the Rouge River. Built in 1915, this lovely property mixes the grandeur of an English castle with Midwestern practicality and charm. It was a place for Clara to tend her beautiful garden and for Henry to tinker in his workshop.
Today, families are welcome to roam the grounds free of charge. Your kids will love exploring the paths and will likely find something new around every bend. Although the main house is currently closed for renovations, the historic garage houses hold free exhibits you can’t miss.
Arab American National Museum
The city of Dearborn is a true melting pot of many different ethnicities. Our population includes lots of nationalities, including our Arab American friends and neighbors. The Arab American National Museum is devoted to highlighting the culture and history of this often-misrepresented people group.
Explore the many exhibits that showcase how Arab Americans have enriched our nation through culture, economy, history and more. They hold special events perfect for both kids and parents. On select Saturdays, your family can also enjoy English-Arabic Storytime. This event tells a story in both English and Arabic, allowing children to learn new words and participate in crafts and games.
Family Breakfast at TRIA
Start your family adventure with the most important meal of the day — breakfast. When people think of TRIA, they don’t exactly think of family-friendly dining. However, our scrumptious breakfast buffet is a different story. Every morning we lay out an incredible array of breakfast favorites and unique options. The best part is, we let kids eat for a discounted price and children three and under eat free.
The little guys love our fluffy chocolate chip pancakes and French toast. And while your kids are chowing down, you can sample our inventive egg dishes with a side of apple sausage.