Keeping kids entertained in the winter months can be a challenge. Freezing temperatures limit outdoor play and the temptation of TV can be too much, but where can you go once you have the kids strapped in the car? Here’s a list of several indoor, kid-friendly activities that are local, fun and relatively inexpensive.

Move to music

* StarSong Studio, 17 Main St., Ayer.

Play, move and groove with your child at StarSong Studio. It offers quality programs like Music Together®, Kindermusik and Itsy Bitsy Yoga. The Studio offers monthly craft parties and drop-in playgroups. Classes are geared for babies, toddlers, preschoolers and their caregivers.

For information call (978) 337-8089 or visit Additional information on Music Together® programs, can be found at (978) 897-0874 or

Go for the arts

* Fire Your Desire, 11 South Rd. (Rte. 119), Pepperell, or 485 Great Rd., Acton.

Paint your own pottery and explore your child’s creative side. The studio offers a monthly Paint Me a Story workshop that includes a story time, painting and a snack. The cost is $10 per painter, including studio fee. Sign-up is required.

* Hands-on Art Museum, 3 Lancaster Rd., Shirley.

Here you’ll find a child-friendly museum with five exhibits full of art supplies, projects and activities for ages three and up. The museum is open Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tickets for the museum are is $6 per person. Children under the age of two enter free.

For information call (978) 425-6161 or visit

* Groton Center for the Arts, Main St., Groton.

GCA is now offering Winter Artworks for Everyone, a series of theatre, art and music classes for all ages. Classes run from Jan. 23 to March 25 and include youth theatre, voice, figure drawing, piano keyboard and more.

For information call (978) 448-3001 or visit

Join a playgroup

* Groton Area Newcomers and Friends

Get better acquainted with your neighbors in Groton and the surrounding towns. The newcomers club offers a new moms group, and a moms and tots group. Each group meets for play-dates such as library events and social functions.

For information call Susan Preiss at (978) 448-3475 or visit

* Groton recreation

Make new friends at the Groton Recreation Children’s Playgroup. The group is for infant to 2-year-olds. Children up to age five are welcome. Children experience open play, circle time, arts and crafts, and stories. It’s held on Tuesdays and Fridays from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in the Squannacook Hall Playroom. The playgroup runs for eight weeks and pre-registration is required. It’s open to residents and non-residents.

* Pepperell recreation

Have an active child that needs to burn off energy? Try Wiggle Time, an action-packed playgroup for kids 12 months to 4 years old. It is held on Wednesdays, at 10:15 a.m., in the Pepperell Recreation Center.

Join your child in dancing, parachute play, hula hoops and playing with balls.

Also try Circle Time, for kids 12 months to 4 years old on either Tuesdays or Fridays at 9:15 a.m. Kids enjoy songs, crafts and free play time. New after-school programs for older kids are offered as well as Friday Night Playground.

For information call Janie Marshall at (978) 433-0324 visit

Try an indoor playground

* One-Stop Fun, 49 Power Rd., Westford.

Let the kids climb, slide, jump and bounce at One-Stop Fun’s Gym Mania Way. The indoor play structure has three stories of tubes and tunnels for climbing and exploring, a wave slide, spiral slide and special toddler area. Admission is $8.99 for ages one and up, and adults get in free. The hours are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 a.m.

For information call (978) 692-9907 or visit

Head to the library

* Lawrence Library, 15 Main St., Pepperell.

Join your child for stories, music, crafts and puppets at Toddler Time for children 18 months to 3 years old on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Story Time for 3- to 5-year-olds is held on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. and Thursdays at 1 p.m.

Recently added is Baby Time on Wednesdays at 1 p.m. for infants to 18-month-olds, which includes stories, songs and signing for babies. Sessions run for six weeks and pre-registration is required.

* Groton Public Library, 99 Main St., Groton.

Listen to stories, sing songs and enjoy fingerplays at Mother Goose Story Time for infants to 2-year-olds on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m.

Story Time for 3- to 5-year-olds is held on Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. The story times are on a first come, first serve, drop-in basis. No pre-registration required, but space is limited with preference given to Groton residents.

They also have Tales and Tunes for infants and preschoolers, and special monthly events for older kids, where pre-registration is required.

For information call Ardis Francoeur at (978) 448-1168 or visit

* Hazen Memorial Library, 3 Keady Way, Shirley.

Enjoy a weekly themed, Toddler Lapsit Story Time for children three months to three years old on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m., and a Preschool Story Time for 3- to 5-year-olds on Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m.

The first Wednesday of each month is Wiggles and Giggles, a musical story session for children 6 months to 5 years old. Story times run every eight to 10 weeks throughout the year and pre-registration is required.

* Ayer Library, 26 East Main St., Ayer.

The library has plenty of kid-friendly things to do including an open craft and learning activity section as well as computers with educational games.

For information call the Children’s Room at (978) 772-8250.

* Townsend Public Library, 276 Main St., Townsend.

Join your child for a fun-filled Story Time with Kathy Couture for children two to four years old. The program is held on Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m. through Feb. 21 in room one of Memorial Hall. Sign up in the Children’s Room.

For information call (978) 597-1714 or visit

* Harvard Public Library, 7 Fairbank St., Harvard.

Need a spontaneous and educational outing for your child? Try Harvard Library’s Drop-in Story Time. No registration required. The story times are Mondays and Tuesdays at 10:30 a.m. for infants to 5-year-olds and Thursdays at 2 p.m. for 3- to 5-year-olds.

For 4- to 6-year-olds, they have Story and Craft on Mondays at 1:30 p.m. and Fridays at 10:30 a.m., which run for six weeks.

For older kids they have an after-school Snack Pack Book Club and Reader’s Theater. Pre-registration is required.

For information call the Children’s Room at (978) 456-4114 or visit

Kristen Bala is a stay-at-home mother of two and resident of Pepperell. She can be reached at