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The Suburbanite
  • 10 things to do near home during spring break

  • Stay home this spring break and enjoy the low cost and free adventures Stark County has to offer.

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  • Tyler Sims is looking forward to time off from school next week. He isn’t going very far. Instead of heading to Florida or some other southern state for warmth and fun, he is planning to stay close to home.
    “We are going to be catching up on some much needed rest,” said Kimberly Sims, Tyler’s mom.
    Tyler, 16, said he planned to play his Xbox 360, pray, read his bible and spend time with family and friends. He and his sister, Megan, 15, are students at Timken High School. Another sister, Katara, 2, is in day care.
    According to their mom, the family is planning a quiet week, “relaxing watching some movies and maybe catching up on some projects around the house.”
    A majority of Stark County’s public schools will be on spring break next week, meaning thousands of children will be looking for something to do.
    Kathy Gray, web content manager for the Canton Stark County Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, said there really isn’t any reason to go out of town. “There are plenty of free and low-cost activities right here in Stark County to enjoy.”
    Gray, a mother of two — Andy, a kindergarten student at St. Joan of Arc, and Marybeth, a preschooler — said, weather permitting, they are heading to the trails at the Wilderness Center and Stark Parks. Their break is from March 31 to April 6.
    If the weather doesn’t pan out in their favor, she said, “The kids love going to the (Wm. McKinley Presidential Library and Museum) to check out the new exhibits in Discover World. We will also probably head over to the Massillon Recreation Center to swim.”
    John Kiste, executive director of the Visitors’ Bureau, touts the local attractions.
    “We are known as being the home of affordable and interactive family fun. Where else can you get up close and personal with an animatronic dinosaur, watch candy creations being made or ride down the Ohio & Erie Canal on an authentic canal boat? This is just a taste of what a family can experience in Canton and Stark County.”
    If you are staying home, check out these ideas for low-cost and free places to have fun:
    Congressman Ralph Regula Canalway Center, located inside Exploration Gateway overlooking Sippo Lake, 5712 12th St. NW, Perry Township, 330-409-8096, free.
    Stark Parks, 5300 Tyner St. NW, Perry Township, 330-477-3552; free.
    Massillon Museum, 121 Lincoln Way E, Massillon, 330-833-4061; free.
    Hoover Historical Center, 1875 E. Maple St., North Canton, 330-499-0287; free.
    Page 2 of 2 - • Magnolia Flouring Mills, 261 Main St., Magnolia, 330-866-3354; free.
    The Wilderness Center, 9877 Alabama Ave. SW, Sugar Creek Township, 330-359-5235, free.
    Harry London Chocolate Factory tour, 5353 Lauby Rd., Green, 330-494-0833, ; Admission is $5, adults; $3, ages 3 to 12; free, seniors and children 2 and younger.
    Massillon Recreation Center, 505 Erie St. N, Massillon, 330-832-1621, ; $6, 4 and older; free for ages 3 and younger.
    Wm. McKinley Presidential Library & Museum, 800 McKinley Monument Dr. NW, Canton, 330-455-7043, ; $8, adults; $7, seniors; $6, ages 3 to 18.
    Palace Theatre, 605 Market Ave. N, Canton, 330-454-8172; $5, movies.
    Reach Denise at 330-580-8321 or denise.sautters@cantonrep.com
    On Twitter: @dsauttersREP