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Family Fun

Family Fun in Erie

Plot your summer vacations, schedule fall outings, cure those winter blues or make it a spring fling. Whatever the reason or season, make your escape to Erie for entertaining, affordable and family-friendly fun!

Classic Family Fun

Waldameer Web

The enduring joy of shared traditions and timeless activities make Erie the ideal setting to create new memories and pass down moments from generation to generation. At Waldameer Park and Water World, iconic rides such as Wacky Shack, Pirate’s Cove, and Dodgem Cars greet park guests with their whimsical décor and that nostalgic amusement park scent. In addition to its long standing status as a family summer destination, Waldameer offers free parking and admission, all while continuing to update and expand rides. Water World offers a perfect remedy to beat the heat with more than 30 slides, a 500,000-gallon wave pool, and two dedicated family areas. Home to more than 400 animals in a compact and streamlined design, the Erie Zoo is a refreshing departure from sprawling metropolitan zoos, allowing visitors to explore its array of exhibits and wildlife in a couple hours, perfectly suited for young children and limited attention spans. The Zoo hosts several annual events including ZooBoo (October), and the Egg-Venture Easter Egg Hunt (March). The crack of a bat and the eruption of cheers from a home run resonates through UPMC Park when the Erie SeaWolves take the field. The SeaWolves are the AA affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. The SeaWolves' season (April – September) is filled with special promotions, and family fun, including frequent fireworks nights and a designated Kids Fun Zone.

Things to Do Indoors

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Escape from the ordinary as you explore Erie’s variety of indoor attractions. Splash Lagoon Indoor Water Park is a tropical oasis for families craving more thrills and less chills, especially in the colder months. Consistently ranked one of the Top 10 Water Park Resorts in the country by USA Today’s Readers’ Choice, Splash Lagoon features nine dynamic water slides, a 200,000-gallon wave pool, FlowRider surf machine, arcade, food court, and a newly renovated Tiki Tree House complete with a giant tipping coconut! Splash Lagoon’s newest attraction is the Froggy Family splash pad featuring a zero-depth pool, fun water sprayers, and colorful frog figures. The feeling you get when your team slips a puck past the goalie is unforgettable, especially when shared among family, friends, and a crowd of like-minded fans when the Erie Otters take the ice at Erie Insurance Arena. Erie’s minor-league Ontario Hockey League team has a major following, with home games from October through April that entertain crowds both on the ice and in the stands with fun family promotions and giveaways.

 

Outdoor Excursions 

Port Farms

Here in Erie there are a multitude of ways to spend time outside and discover Erie’s natural side. Nature and recreation come together seamlessly at Asbury Woods where families can explore more than five miles of winding trails set among 216 acres of lush fields, forests, and wetlands. Asbury Woods Nature Center has interactive educational programs complete with animal exhibits, a gift shop, and annual family-forward events such as Maple Festival (March), Scary Creature Feature (October), and Winter Wonderland (December). Set in the scenic foothills of Clymer, NY just across the Pennsylvania border, Peek’n Peak Ski Resort’s picturesque setting and wide range of activities is a great spot for families seeking relaxation and excitement in one location. From downhill skiing, tubing, and snowboarding in the winter to giant zip lines, aerial ropes course, swimming, and mini golf in the summer, the Peek is a year-round destination for outdoor recreation. With a charming rural farm setting, Port Farms is a delightful place to take the family for a variety of farmed-themed activities and seasonal attractions. From picking pumpkins, and winding through corn mazes to horse-drawn holiday carriage rides and visits with Santa, Port Farms provides a wholesome environment for everyone. Their newly opened Poverty Knob Farmhouse Ales serves locally hand-crafted beer made with regional ingredients, including some from their own farm!

Hands-On Experiences

National Comedy Center 2023 credit National Comedy Center 2 WEB

Engaging, hands-on activities combine entertainment and education to inspire creativity, strengthen family bonds, and make lasting memories. There’s always something imaginative, inventive, and immersive happening at the newly renovated expERIEnce Children’s Museum. The new three-story, 19,000-square-foot building features exhibits that pay homage to the Erie community: “Lake Life” celebrates Lake Erie and boasts the second-largest interactive water table in the country, featuring miniature versions of iconic Erie structures, and “My Town," a kid-sized town is packed with hands-on experiences from taking orders at a restaurant to changing the oil on a car. Inside the Tom Ridge Environmental Center (TREC), find two floors of interactive exhibits where guests can learn about the history and formation of Presque Isle State Park as well as its inhabitants. The free facility is open year-round and also features a 75-foot observation tower offering spectacular panoramic views of Lake Erie. Located approximately 40 minutes from Erie in Jamestown, NY, the National Comedy Center uses state-of-the-art technology and interactivity to create personalized environments by way of laugh wristbands and custom Sense of Humor profiles., created via easy-to-use kiosks. Once created, begin interacting with more than 50 immersive exhibits tailored to comedic tastes as well as age-appropriate material.

Get a Sneak Peak!

Check out some of Erie's top attractions for families with Andy's Awesome Adventures!

Summer Break Playlist

School's out for summer! Let this playlist guide your family vacation in Erie County. For all of VisitErie's playlists, click here

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5 Wits

814-618-6071
400 Millcreek Mall Blvd
Erie, PA 16509

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All An Act Theatre

814-450-8553
652 West 17th Street
Erie, PA 16502

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Asbury Woods Nature Center

814-835-5356
4105 Asbury Road
Pet friendly (outside trails only)
Erie, PA 16506

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ASCEND Climbing

582-228-9035
426 State Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Bicentennial Tower

814-455-6055
1 State Street
Erie, PA 16507

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Board & Brush Erie

814-392-3500
3330 West 26th Street
Village West Plaza
Erie, PA 16506

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Burch Farms

814-725-0747
9210 Sidehill Road
North East, PA 16428

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Covert Escape Game

814-315-9694
2061 West 8th Street
Erie , PA 16505

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Double D.A.B. Riding Stables

716-736-4418
5811 Welch Hill Road
Ripley, NY 14775

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Erie Art Museum

814-459-5477
20 East 5th Street
Erie, PA 16507

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Erie Commodores National Premier Soccer League

814-392-4785
Home field is Erie Sports Center
8159 Oliver Road
Erie, PA 16509

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Erie Events

814-453-7117
809 French Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie Food Tours

814-572-1407
Meets in front of Like My Thai 827 State Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie Maritime Museum/U.S. Brig Niagara

814-452-2744
150 East Front Street
Erie, PA 16507

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Erie Otters OHL Hockey

814-455-7779
Erie Insurance Arena
809 French St
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie Philharmonic

814-455-1375
23 West 10th Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie Playhouse

814-454-2852
12 West 10th Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie SeaWolves AA Baseball

814-456-1300
Home games - UPMC Park/110 East 10 Street
Business Office - 831 French Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie Sports Center

412-852-7508
8159 Oliver Road
Erie, PA 16509

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Erie Station Dinner Theatre

814-864-2022
4940 Peach Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Erie Zoo & Botanical Gardens

814-864-4091
423 West 38th Street
Erie, PA 16508

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Escape Game Erie

814-580-9905
4838 West Ridge Road
Erie, PA 16506

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Escape Game Erie

814-580-9905
23 W 10th Street
Erie, PA 16501

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expERIEnce Children's Museum

814-453-3743
420 French Street
Erie, PA 16507

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GypsyLyn Fishing Charters

724-316-2529
35 State Street
Erie , PA 16507

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Hagen History Center Museum

814-454-1813
356 West 6th Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Hidden Harbor Water Rentals

814-602-5846
12 East Dobbins Landing
next to Woody's Backwater BARge & Grill
Erie, PA 16507

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Kellar's Magic & Comedy Club

814-461-0911
1402 State Street
Erie, PA 16501

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Lake Erie Arboretum at Frontier Park (LEAF)

814-453-5323
1501 West 6th Street
Erie, PA 16505

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Lake Erie Speedway

814-725-3303
10700 Delmas Drive
North East, PA 16428

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Land Lighthouse

1200 Lighthouse Street
Erie, PA 16507

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Lecom Sports Park

814-823-6706
8159 Oliver Road
Erie, PA 16509

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Lettie G. Howard

814-449-9012
150 East Front Street - Erie Maritime Museum
Erie, PA 16507

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National Comedy Center

716-484-2222
203 W. Second Street
Jamestown, NY 14701

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Oliver's Bayfront Mini Golf

814-920-9666
130 E Front Street
Erie , PA 16507

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Peek 'n Peak Resort

716-355-4141
1405 Olde Road
Clymer, NY 14724
visiterie-patio.svg

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Play Port

814-528-5257
2730 West 12th Street
Erie, PA 16505

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Port Erie Sports

814-452-2628
402 West Bayfront Parkway
Erie, PA 16507

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Port Farms

814-796-4500
2055 Stone Quarry Road
Waterford, PA 16441

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Presley and Pear Arts and Crafts

814-824-9241
1909 Chestnut Street
East End Entrance
Erie, PA 16502

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Presque Isle Boat Rental

814-838-3938
Presque Isle State Park
Presque Isle Canoe & Boat Livery
Erie, PA 16505

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Presque Isle Boat Tours - The Lady Kate

814-836-0201
Perry Monument at Presque Isle
Erie, PA 16501

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Presque Isle Lighthouse

814-833-3604
Presque Isle State Park, east of Beach 6
Erie, PA 16505

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Presque Isle State Park

814-833-7424
Foot of Peninsula Drive
Erie, PA 16505

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Presque Isle Yellow Bike Rental

814-835-8900
Waterworks Beach area
Presque Isle State Park
Erie, PA 16505

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Quaker Steak & Lube

814-217-1140
8071 Peach Street
Erie, PA 16509

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Scallywags Pirate Adventures

814-453-2627
2 State Street
Erie, PA 16507

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Splash Lagoon Indoor Water Park Resort

866-3SPLASH (77-5274)
8091 Peach Street
Erie, PA 16509

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Stumpy’s Hatchet House (Axe Throwing)

814-528-5005
3728 Liberty Street
Erie, PA 16508

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Sunview Golf

814-734-5098
12270 Edinboro Road
Edinboro, PA 16412

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The North Pier Light

814-833-7424
E Fisher Drive
Erie, PA 16507

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The Shop at 19th and Chestnut

814-824-9241
1909 Chestnut Street
Erie, PA 16502

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Tight Lines Sport Fishing LLC

724-880-1283
Captain John E. Lampe Marina, Foot of Port Access Road
Erie, PA 16507

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Tom Ridge Environmental Center (TREC)

814-833-7424
301 Peninsula Drive
Erie, PA 16505

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Victorian Princess Cruises

814-459-9696
Foot of State Street/Dobbins Landing
Erie, PA 16507

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Waldameer Park & Water World

877-817-1009
220 Peninsula Drive
Erie, PA 16505

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We Rock the Spectrum- Erie

814-315-0940
2167 W. 12th Street
B2
Erie, PA 16506

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Your Sailing Adventure

Wolverine Park Marina
34 State Street
Erie, PA 16507

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Partner Spotlight

Dobbins Landing Spring 2022 EB 2

Dobbins Landing

Located on the southeast shore of Lake Erie, the Port of Erie has been promoting industrial, commercial, and recreational opportunities on the waters of Lake Erie since 1959.

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UPMC Hamot - See What Makes Us Different

UPMC Hamot is a 458-bed hospital in Erie, Pennsylvania, offering a full complement of inpatient and outpatient services. The hospital serves as a regional referral hub and is the only accredited trauma center in the region.

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814 Photo

Showcasing the incredible year round beauty of the City of Erie and its surrounding areas, commonly referred to as its area code "the 814". Explore some of Erie County's most breathtaking landscape photography.

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ASCEND Erie - Climbing | Fitness | Yoga

NOW OPEN! ASCEND fosters a community-centered climbing, fitness, and yoga experience by serving individuals and groups of all ages, backgrounds and abilities. Located in Downtown Erie, ASCEND welcomes Erie visitors to stop in and give climbing a try!

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The Cork Partner Spotlight 400 x 300 1

The Cork 1794

Open for Lunch and Dinner. Get ready for an experience like no other. An atmosphere where uncommon style, comfort and service seamlessly meld. Where food and beverages are expertly crafted to be beautiful, satisfying and truly special. A place that makes every day feel like a reason to celebrate.

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Two45 Waterfront Grille Now Open!

Savor an exquisite waterfront dining experience at Sheraton Erie Bayfront Hotel, where culinary excellence meets panoramic views. This signature restaurant invites you to indulge in a delectable journey with a menu showcasing locally sourced ingredients and global inspirations while overlooking the serene waters of Lake Erie.

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Olivers Beer Garden Partner Spotlight 400 x 300

Oliver’s Beer Garden

This summer, head over to Oliver's Beer Garden for endless fun and live music entertainment. Enjoy live performances every Wednesday through Sunday night throughout the season!

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mazza spotlight

Mazza Vineyards and the South Shore Wine Company

The Mazza family welcomes you to explore 3 unique locations in Lake Erie Wine Country. Sip and savor award-winning wines at Mazza Vineyards and the historic South Shore Wine Company, both located in North East, PA, and be sure to visit their combination winery, distillery and brewery, Mazza Chautauqua Cellars/Five & 20 Spirits and Brewing, in nearby Westfield, NY.

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Exclusive Tourism Rewards

If you live more than 50 miles from Millcreek Mall, stop by the Customer Service Center to register. You’ll receive a Guest Rewards Tourism Program Luggage Tag. Scanning the QR Code on it will reveal special offers from participating mall merchants. If you spend $200 or more that day, take your receipts back to the Customer Service Center and you’ll get a FREE $20 Mall Gift Card. You get rewarded just for shopping!

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u pick 6 spotlight

U Pick 6 Craft Beer Pubs & Restaurants

Erie’s own local craft beer pubs are a must-visit! With 4 great locations, just pick one that’s convenient for you! A casual, family friendly dining experience with something for everyone! To view our menu, check out what’s on tap, or get to directions to our pubs, learn more now!”

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Poverty Knob Farmhouse Ales

Stop by Port Farms to check out the newest addition, Poverty Knob Farmhouse Ales. We offer hand-crafted beers and delicious sharable food year-round. The brewery is family and dog friendly with both indoor and outdoor spaces. We offer games, music and entertainment for all ages!

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erie events spotlight

Erie Events

Erie Events manages a four facility entertainment complex that includes the Warner Theatre, Erie Insurance Arena, Bayfront Convention Center and UPMC Park. These four venues host a variety of events that include world-class entertainment, family friendly shows and sporting events.

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Farmhouse Retreat

Your “Home Away from Home” short term rental sleeps 8 and is in a great location close to Erie Sports Center, Splash Lagoon, shopping and restaurants, as well as Steelhead Fishing. This restored 1881 Farmhouse is located on 10 private acres. Reminisce about bygone days when life was slower and simpler. With a long driveway and large yard, kick back by the firepit, watch wildlife or enjoy a beautiful Erie sunset from the back patio.

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Tia Book Cellar

Tia Book Cellar is an independent bookstore offering new and bargain books, unique gifts, puzzles, and games for all interests and ages. Located across from Gibson Park in North East, their brand embodies the local business model and the local grape heritage. Tia's believes that "there is always … local, an alternative, and a story." They look forward to helping you discover your next read or gift here.

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The Cove Bay-Side Restaurant & Tavern

Set sail for an inspiring dining experience! Enjoy a unique casual dining experience on Erie's Bayfront. The Cove's nautically inspired decor and an unbelievable view of Presque Isle Bay will have you feeling the venturous spirit of those who live their lives on the sea.

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Ante-up, Erie.

Find true action with slots, table games, sports book, and horse racing.

Soak in the fun!

Experience 84 degrees all year at one of the top water parks in the country.

Just for fun!

Experience family summer fun on more than 100 great rides, slides and attractions at Waldameer!

One stop convenience.

Fill your tank, pick up fresh food from local brands, and a six-pack to go in 40 regional locations.

Award-Winning Compassionate Care

Voted Erie’s Choice Best Hospital for eight years in a row

Just for fun!

Experience family summer fun on more than 100 great rides, slides and attractions at Waldameer!

Award-Winning Compassionate Care

Voted Erie’s Choice Best Hospital for eight years in a row

Soak in the fun!

Experience 84 degrees all year at one of the top water parks in the country.

Ante-up, Erie.

Find true action with slots, table games, sports book, and horse racing.

One stop convenience.

Fill your tank, pick up fresh food from local brands, and a six-pack to go in 40 regional locations.