Five fun but frugal activities for families during spring break

By Susan Parrish, Columbian Education Reporter



Schools across Clark County and Southwest Washington will be on spring break April 4 through 8. Students in the Battle Ground, Camas, Evergreen, Green Mountain, La Center, Hockinson, Ridgefield, Vancouver, Washougal and Woodland districts will enjoy a week’s vacation from school. School resumes April 11.

More than 80,000 students — and their parents — will be looking for fun, family-friendly activities. Here are five fun things to keep the kids busy without breaking the family’s budget. Some are free.

1. Tiptoe through the tulips.

• What: Take tulip photos; pick tulips in the U-pick field. No pets.

• When: 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Beat the crowds before the Tulip Festival (April 9-10, 16-17).

• Where: Holland America Bulb Farms, 1066 S. Pekin Road, Woodland.

• Cost: U-pick tulips are 50 cents per stem.

• Info: 360-225-4512 or

2. ‘Monty Python’ fun.

• What: Here’s a treat for those of you who can quote the Black Knight’s lines from the 1975 cult classic “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” (“It’s just a flesh wound”) or sing along with the Knights of the Round Table: “We’re knights of the Round Table, we dance whene’er we’re able.” The best lines and silliest songs will be subtitled karaoke style. All viewers will receive coconut halves to bring their imaginary horses to life. The movie is rated PG.

• When: Quote-along is 8 p.m. Friday and 8:05 p.m. Sunday; sing-along is 4:10 p.m. Saturday.

• Where: Liberty Theatre, 315 N.E. Fourth Ave., Camas.

• Cost: $5 per person.

• Info: 360-859-9555 or

3. Hike a trail.

• What: Even the youngest kids can handle the easy, two-mile hike with little elevation gain along the East Fork of the Lewis River at the La Center Bottoms Wetlands. Home to coyotes, otters and migratory waterfowl, the stewardship site is designated one of three Watchable Wildlife spots in Clark County. Dogs permitted on leash. Just south of Sternwheeler Park.

• Directions: From Vancouver, take Interstate 5 north to Exit 16 — Northwest La Center Road/La Center. Turn right onto La Center Road. Drive 1.6 miles. Immediately after crossing the bridge over the East Fork Lewis River as you enter La Center, turn right onto Third Avenue, then immediately turn right again to the trailhead parking south of the La Center Wastewater Plant, 101 Aspen Ave., La Center.

• When: 7 a.m. to dusk.

• Where: La Center Bottoms Trail, Northeast La Center Road near West Third Street, La Center.

• Cost: Free.

• Info:

4. Go fishing.

• What: Annual Klineline Kids Fishing Derby for kids ages 5 to 14 provides all fishing gear and bait. Kids fish in 45-minute time slots. Preregistration encouraged. There’s an archery range, too.

• When: Children and adults with special needs 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 8; everyone 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 9.

• Where: Klineline Pond, Salmon Creek Park, 1482 N.E. 117th St.

• Cost: $5 registration.

• Info: 360-608-7973 or

5. Fly down zip lines.

• What: Skamania Lodge Zip Line Tour features seven zip lines ranging from 100 feet to 900 feet, three sky bridges, an auto rappel and some light trail walking. All safety gear provided and mandatory. No open-toed shoes. Hiking boots are best. Weight limit: 60 pounds minimum to 275 pounds maximum.

• When: Open daily for morning and afternoon guided zip line tours.

• Where: 1131 Skamania Lodge Way, Stevenson.

• Cost: $99 per person plus sales tax, but discounted if you ask for “spring break special.” Reservations required.

• Info: 509-427-0202, or