After the school day ends, keep your student learning and growing. The Findlay area offers numerous enrichment opportunities for children, including after-school clubs, classes and field trips!
Have Fun and Learn
201 College St.
419-434-4560 | mazzamuseum.org
The Mazza Museum on the campus of the University of Findlay is an often overlooked gem. It’s home to more than 11,000 pieces of artwork and children’s picture books, making it one of the largest and most diverse collections in the world. Funday Sunday, one Sunday a month from 1:30-3:30pm, is a day of fun, art and literature for families, at no cost! Each month explores a different theme. Visit Mazza’s website for the Funday Sunday schedule.
Children’s Museum of Findlay
1800 Tiffin Ave., Suite 201
567-250-9616 | cmfindlay.com
“Children’s Museum of Findlay” on Facebook
Located inside the Findlay Village Mall, the Children’s Museum is designed for ages birth to 10-years to learn about science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics through a variety of hands-on activities. The museum encourages pretend play, stimulates the brain through STEM challenges and lets kids explore and imagine in a world just their size.
Hancock County Historical Museum
422 W. Sandusky St. | 419-423-4433
“Hancock Historical Museum” on Facebook
The Hancock Historical Museum brings history to life for children of all ages. Explore the Museum as a family or have your children participate in the special events and camps that the Museum sponsors throughout the year. Periodically, a “night in the museum” program allows students the opportunity to sleep overnight and engage in fun, hands-on activities.
Benefit From a Mentor/Tutor
Children’s Mentoring Connection
305 E. Lincoln St.
419-424-9752 | cmchancock.org
“Children’s Mentoring Connection of Hancock County” on Facebook
Could your child benefit from a mentor? Children’s Mentoring Connection of Hancock County serves youth ages 6-14 with school-based programs in five area schools, providing mentoring for students after school or during the child’s lunch period. Volunteer mentors are trained/vetted and can be high school students or any age adult. The mentors seek to develop a relationship with their students to enhance personal growth as competent, caring and confident individuals.
University of Findlay
1000 N. Main St. | firstname.lastname@example.org
“The Clubhouse Reading Center at the University of Findlay” on Facebook
A free literacy outreach program, The Clubhouse is coordinated by the University of Findlay’s Department of Education with a mission to enhance the reading skills of area students through relevant and personal assessment and intervention. The 3-2-1 program offers small group tutoring and the C.H.I.P. program provides individual tutoring. All services are provided by UF undergraduate education majors under the supervision of their professors.
Join a Club
Black Swamp Area Council, Boy Scouts of America
2100 Broad Ave.
419-422-4356 | blackswampbsa.org
The mission of the Boy Scouts of America is to prepare young people for ethical and moral lives with a focus on citizenship, character, personal fitness and leadership. Cub Scouting focuses on fun, hands-on learning and achievement with access to camps and activities at Findlay’s Camp Berry.
Camp Fire Northwest Ohio
305 W. Hardin St.
419-422-5415 | campfirenwohio.com
“Camp Fire Northwest Ohio” on Facebook
Camp Fire believes every child has a “spark”— unique skills, talents, and interests— that they can explore outside of the school day. They offer after school club programs at some area schools and at their location on Hardin Street. The clubs pair trained staff and volunteer leaders with youth groups to work on homework and the Camp Fire curriculum. Clubs typically go on field trips, undertake service projects and other activities to earn beads and life skills. Camp Fire also offers school-day-out programs for those school vacation days.
Explore Your Creative Side
200 W. Main Cross St. | 419-423-2787
“Youtheatre” on Facebook
Participating in theatre programs helps kids become more creative and confident. Youtheatre, a program funded by The Arts Partnership,is geared toward students in grades 1-12. Youth can develop lifelong skills, make new friends, and have fun, through their participation in Youtheatre performances, classes and workshops.
Awakening Minds Art
515 S. Main St. | 419-302-3892
A non-profit organization, Awakening Minds Art offers therapeutic and educational art to students of all ages and abilities. They feature a variety of classes (pre-registered and drop-in) throughout the year that teach skills in painting, sculpture and more. It’s a space for kids to simply relax, explore and be creative!
Hancock County Children’s Choir
200 W. Main Cross St. | 419-423-2787
If your child loves to sing, consider having him/her join the Hancock County Children’s Choir. Open to children in grades 2-5 from the surrounding area, the ensemble for treble voices rehearses and performs throughout the winter and spring. Children have the opportunity to develop relationships with others and to gain an understanding of using their voices in an ensemble. Children must audition and there is a tuition fee.
Becky’s School of Dance
15440 U.S. 224 | 419-423-7423
Becky’s School of Dance has provided children in the community with quality dance instruction for more than 50 years. Their goal is to help children be all they can be. Dance classes help children build character, acquire poise and increase rhythm and coordination skills. Becky’s School of Dance offers classes in tap, ballet, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, musical theatre and pointe and serves dancers aged 3 to adult.
3430 N. Main St. | 419-424-7176
“The Cube” on Facebook
Enjoy fun and fitness on the ice at The Cube, Findlay’s indoor ice rink. Open seasonally from September to late March and May to July, The Cube offers public skate times on Friday and Saturday evenings (when it attracts a teenage crowd) and on Saturdays from 1-2:50pm and Sundays from 3-4:50pm. They also offer skating lessons for children, from beginning skaters to advanced.
Hancock Park District
1424 E. Main Cross St.
419-425-7275 | Hancockparks.com
Kids of all ages will enjoy playing and exploring at Hancock County’s public parks. The park district also offers numerous programs, events, and camps throughout the year for children of all ages. Popular programs include nature hikes, star gazing, pioneer programs at Litzenberg Woods and more.
Findlay Family YMCA
Downtown Branch: 300 E. Lincoln St.
East Branch: 1400 Manor Hill Rd.
419-422-4424 | findlayymca.org
The Findlay YMCA offers extensive programming to keep kids active. Members and non-members can sign up for classes including swimming, cheerleading, tumbling, gymnastics, racquetball, tennis, judo, volleyball, and basketball and flag football leagues. Check out the website for information about fall, winter and spring class sessions.
Findlay Martial Arts Academy
1740 Lima Ave. | 419-427-3988
Martial arts classes are a positive outlet for children’s extra energy and they help to build self-esteem and discipline. Findlay Martial Arts Academy is a family-oriented center that has been in the community for 20 years. Their outstanding instructors offer karate lessons for children of all ages and skill levels and a Little Ninjas program developed by the National Association of Professional Martial Artists geared toward little ones ages 4-6.
Triple T Ranch
6717 Marion Township Rd. 215
419-424-1417 | thetranch.com
Triple T Ranch offers horseback riding lessons in both English and Western style for children of all ages and experiences. You can opt for 30-minute or 60-minute lessons. They also offer trail riding experiences through a beautiful, wooded 10-acre lot.
2725 N. Main Street
419-420-7586 | jimsteffenfitness.com
Obstacle courses are a whole lot of fun and good exercise! Your child can pretend to be an American Ninja Warrior during XT Fitness’s open gym hours on most Saturdays from 10:30am-2pm. There are four obstacle course levels to complete, each one progressively more challenging, and your child can earn an XT Ninja Pro card for successful completion of each stage.
After School Activities
Friendship, Fun and Purpose
American Heritage Girls accepting new members
by Laurie Wurth Pressel
In the five years that Kristen Giles has been volunteering with the local troop of American Heritage Girls, she’s watched “girls grow in friendship and blossom with interests and activities that they didn’t even know they’d enjoy.”
American Heritage Girls is a Christ-centered character and leadership development program for girls aged 5-18. Started in 1995 in Cincinnati, Findlay launched its local troop in 2014. The Findlay troop is open to girls in Hancock and surrounding counties. “We are non-denominational and our membership includes girls from all faiths as well as those who attend private and public schools and some who are homeschooled,” said Giles, who is serving as troop coordinator for the coming year.
Findlay’s troop meets the first and third Thursday of the month, September to May, at the Findlay Evangelical Free Church. In the summer, members get together for outdoor activities such as day camp, camping, horseback riding and hiking.
Focus on faith, service and fun
The program’s focus is on faith, service and fun. Girls are placed in one of five units based on their age: Pathfinder (ages 5-6); Tenderheart (ages 6-9); Explorer (ages 9-12); Pioneer (ages 12-14) and Patriot (ages 14-18). Troop members earn badges for activities and service work. “The options are numerous, everything from engineering to arts and crafts, citizenship to ancestry and more,” said Giles.
American Heritage Girls inspires girls to get involved and try new things in service to others. As a result, they develop leadership and communication skills and uncover hidden talents and interests, says Giles. She recalls one troop member who involved community members in sewing over 300 dresses for girls in Haiti, before later embarking on a mission trip to Haiti.
Findlay’s troop tackles many service projects in the local area. Troop members have planted flowers and pulled weeds for the Women’s Resource Center, packed lunches for the Feed-a-Child program, and held a donation drive for shoebox presents for the Operation Christmas Child organization.
“Because we are a Christ-centered organization, we also focus on faith development,” explained Giles. “We don’t teach doctrine, but we pray together and encourage girls to develop their character, grow in their faith and to get involved with their church.”
In July 2020, American Heritage Girls will hold its national convention at Cedarville University (just east of Dayton) and Findlay’s troop plans to take as many girls to the convention as they can. “We are super excited about it,” said Giles. “It’s a chance for them to meet girls from across the country and be together for three days of fun, badge activities and leadership activities. The national convention is held only once every five years, so it’s a pretty big deal in our world!”
Findlay’s troop has been steadily growing and now has about 40 participants. Girls can sign up until the end of September. “It’s just a really awesome group of girls and they have so much fun and find many good friends,” said Giles. “I am looking forward to seeing the program grow and seeing its impact on girls in the future.”
For information on joining American Heritage Girls, call 419-581-0781 or visit americanheritagegirls.org or “American Heritage Girls Troop OH2014” on Facebook.