Stacy Molter: The Perfect Summer Day Trip to Discovery Cube LA and Hansen Dam Recreation Area
Thank you to Discovery Cube LA for inviting our family to a fun-filled summer day trip, and explore and share our love or STEM learning with our readers!
If you’re looking for the perfect summer day trip in Los Angeles you have to take a trip to Discovery Cube LA and the Hansen Dam Recreation Area. Not only is there a variety family friendly leisure activities, you can also enjoy a health-focused, nut-free meal at the kid-friendly cafe Bean Sprouts.
See also: Discovery Cube LA Summer Exhibits
The Hansen Dam Recreation Center is located along the northern edge of the San Fernando Valley, and features a variety of activities perfect for kicking off a fun-fill day trip your family will love.
Located within the recreation center is the Hansen Dam Aquatic Center, consisting of a moderate sized lake that offers fishing and boating, as well as a smaller swim lake with filtered and chlorinated water and life guards provided by the City of LA Parks and Rec department.
The Orcas-Gabreieleno Equestrian Center features trails that connect the to neighboring Hansen Dam, the nearby Angeles Nation Forest, and leads to a walking path along the dam’s top where you can get a bird’s-eye view of the area’s natural habitats, the Montane Chaparral and Woodlands and the Riparian.
The Hansen Dam Recreation Center is also the home of Discovery Cube LA, a science based learning center offering exhibits, field trips, and assembly programs to allow kids to think and learn using their hands.
No matter which activity you choose, you are sure to have a memorable day with family and friends.
THE PERFECT SUMMER DAY TRIP TO THE CUBE AND HANSEN DAM RECREATION AREA
We took a trip to the Hansen Dam Recreation Area last weekend to embark on our perfect summer day trip. Since the weather was cool with a slight breeze, we decided to hike to Hansen Dam to explore the top of the dam and discover the beautiful view of the basin below.
The hike to Hansen Dam is fairly easy, and for families with young children can accommodate a sturdy, jogging-style stroller.
At the base of the dam you will find the wide, walking/equestrian path below which you can follow to the west and hike up the dirt path along the west side to the top of the dam.
Hansen Dam is a two-mile, 97-foot high flood control dam built by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1940. The Hansen Dam Recreation Center borders the back of the dam, while the Hansen Dam Golf Course boarders the front.
As you walk along the path on the top of the dam, you get a first hand look at how gorgeous the valley is as you step out of the city life and step into nature.
About half way across the dam you can turn and take in the breathtaking view of the Montane Chaparral and Woodlands below, with the picturesque San Gabriel mountains in the background.
Farther down the dam, we found a small path that led down the side of the dam allowing our children to explore the engineering feat the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers took on while building this monumental dam.
Once we hit the dirt walking/equestrian path at the base of the dam, we hiked over to Discovery Cube LA for a nutritious lunch, to explore the educational exhibits, and to take a break from the heat.
The hike across the top of the dam is a light, family friendly hike for all ages. Our crew of hikers ranged from an energetic two-year old to us older parents, and we all enjoyed the hike and the view of the valley below.
If hiking is not your thing, you can also find baseball fields, soccer fields, barbeque pits, picnic tables, and a children’s play area, and the science focused Discovery Cube LA at the Hansen Dam Recreation Center to help make your perfect summer day trip a hit with the entire family.
Discovery Cube LA – Bean Sprouts
If you’re looking for a healthy kid-focused cafe you have to try Bean Sprouts, located within Discovery Cube LA. Bean Sprouts keeps young visitors in mind offering a low counter and a picture menu for kids to order from.
With fun, healthy, character themed meals to choose from, like Bean Sprouts’ Imaginibbles™ Crocamole and Whoopsie Daisy, kids will love eating from Bean Sprouts at The Cube.
For parents, Bean Sprouts offers tempting salads and sandwiches, as well as an organic espresso bar! Plus, if you have children with food allergies like our do, I’m proud to share Bean Sprouts is a nut-free kitchen, and nearly all dietary needs and allergies can be accommodated with their top ingredient guidelines.
If your child needs a small pick-me-up snack while exploring Discovery Cube LA, Bean Sprouts also offers a variety of drinks and snacks perfect for little fingers to feed themselves while taking a break between exhibits.
Discovery Cube LA – Inspector Training Course
It’s no secret our family loves Discovery Cube LA and the STEM focused exhibits to inspire kids. Whenever we visit Discovery Cube LA, our children have a blast exploring all their favorite exhibits and the latest events.
During this visit our family decided to focus on the Inspector Training Course Exhibit, a competitive scavenger-hunt game which takes families inside a California home and puts them to the test!
Is your house earthquake-proof and energy-efficient? Find out when you strap on an inspector belt and master the skills of a home inspector using a touch screen tablet.
After completing the exhibit, young minds will be able to answer the questions below and more, and take this knowledge home to better their home.
Do you know what plants are drought tolerant, or California friendly, and make a smart choice for a Southern California garden?
Which of the three light bulbs use the least amount of power?
How much water you can save with a high-efficiency showerhead?
What is the recommended thickness of insulation in the attic to keep your house cooler in the summer, and warmer in the winter?
Are your appliance’s Energy Star qualified? And do you know how much it costs per year to operate them?
There’s so much to learn as you work your way through the inside of a California home at Discovery Cube LA.
And no visit to Discovery Cube LA is complete without our kids visiting some of their favorite exhibits.
Adventures with Clifford the Big Red Dog
Park Science Exhibit
Discovery Cube LA is located at 11800 Foothill Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 91342. To learn more about Discovery Cube LA, their location and hours, and their current events, visit http://la.discoverycube.org/.
We were invited by Discovery Cube LA to be an official Discovery Cube Mom Ambassador. Portions of the material and expenses for this event have been provided courtesy of Discovery Cube LA. All opinions are our own.
This blog post was written by and all the photos are by Stacy Molter. You can read her blog, Fancy Shanty, here.