Family Friendly Things To Do in Downtown Phoenix

by Tyler Fontes
Community Family Travel, Shopping & Leisure Tyler Fontes July 30, 2020

About the author: Photographer, video blogger, nature-lover, dad of twin boys, and husband to Andy – Tyler Fontes is always leading the “Fontes Four Pack” on new adventures. This family-friendly roundup of fun things to do in Downtown Phoenix was originally published in the DTPHX Directory, 2020-2021 edition. The Fontes family has since relocated to Salt Lake City, but you can still follow the fun at @fontes_four_pack.

Filled with everything from fresh, locally-grown produce to handmade jewelry and one-of-a-kind crafts, the Downtown Farmers Market is the perfect place to soak up Phoenix culture, and support small, independent businesses. (Photo: @fontes_four_pack)

Downtown Phoenix Farmers Market

One of our favorite family activities to do on Saturdays is bike to the Farmers Market. It’s full of locally-grown produce and products, hand-crafted art, and amazing food and coffee options – a great free event for the entire family.

From the brand new state-of-the-art playground to Phoenix’s main library, Margaret T. Hance Park has a lot to offer families. (Photo: @fontes_four_pack)

Margaret T. Hance Park

We love going to family-friendly festivals at Hance Park like Roosevelt Row Pie Social, Downtown Donut Festival, Arizona Fall Fest, Chinese Culture + Cuisine Festival, and many more throughout the year; all with lots of activities for kids and great food. It’s also surrounded by a number of new restaurants, the Japanese Friendship Garden and Burton Barr Central Library. We always take time to walk to the library next door for books, activities, and free seeds for our urban garden.

Tyler and Andy Fontes take a break from riding bikes in Portland Parkway. Their twin sons, Emmerich (left) and Caellum, pause from running around to enjoy a healthy snack. (Photo: Jill Richards)

Portland Parkway

This is a nice little stretch of park where we can enjoy letting our boys run around a bit. It’s a great stop to relax at before moving on to other activities, like the Irish Cultural Center and McClelland Library around the corner. The park is also adjacent to downtown’s rainbow crosswalk, the Roosevelt/Central Avenue Light Rail Station, LGBTQ+ friendly restaurants like Match Restaurant + Lounge, and our favorite staycation hotel, Found:re Phoenix.

Andy (left) and Tyler Fontes and their sons, Caellum and Emmerich, riding bikes over the rainbow crosswalk near the Roosevelt and Central Avenue light rail stop. (Photo: Jill Richards)

Children’s Museum of Phoenix

We have been members of the Children’s Museum for a year now, and our kids absolutely love how much there is to do. There are three floors, each with different activities for kids of all ages. The showstopper is a massive, maze-like play structure that’s two stories tall, and our boys love to explore it.

Arizona Dbacks games are always a great family-friendly option, and the Arizona Science Center is just a short walk from the stadium. (Photo: @fontes_four_pack)

Arizona Science Center

The Science Center is truly amazing, and the activities it provides kids are endless – tons of hands-on learning for children of all ages, including the adults. There are always great rotating exhibits to experience too.

Match Market + Bar, located inside the Found:re Phoenix Hotel, is LGBTQ+ friendly and serves breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. (Photo: Jill Richards)

Heritage Square + Science Park

This is a great area to wander with the family, located between the Children’s Museum and Science Center. You can tour the historic Rosson House Museum, parents can recharge at Royal Coffee Bar, or you can enjoy great food at a few of the restaurants located in the square like Pizzeria Bianco. The square also hosts events and festivals throughout the year like Phoenix Flea, which is a modern market full of local hand-crafted art, vintage items, fashion and food.

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