Healthy, strong family relationships are foundational to young people’s growth, learning, and well-being.


These relationships build strong social and emotional strengths that kids use throughout their lives.


But great family relationships don’t just happen..



Welcome to My Discovery Destination!

Discovery Family Adventures

where your family can find plenty of opportunities to


The Discovery Family Adventures provide ideas, activities, and experiences to help build strong family relationships.


Our goal is to strengthen family relationships to help kids be and become their best selves

and to support parents in raising happy, successful, resilient kids in an exciting,

but sometimes turbulent and dangerous world.



For 2022 all reporting will be done via the Discovery Hunt (Goosechase) App.


The Adventures will be available via the website for use by anyone that wants them, but everyone is encouraged to use the Discovery Hunt (Goosechase) App to qualify for the Family Reward Events and prizes.


Get links for downloading the App HERE.

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Choose from the Adventures listed below


(or design your own family adventure!)


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Family Ice Skating

Family Adventure


GOAL: Enjoy the favorite winter activity of ice skating




Spend time together as a family doing something that has something to do with ice skating-- on a pond, at an outdoor city skating rink or an indoor skating rink. Not skaters? You can try a new skill, OR you can simply go enjoy the ambiance of the skating rink. Take a thermos of hot cocoa and enjoy watching the skaters. If you are an artist you may want to sketch what you see, or write a short story about what you see.




  Hot chocolate or hot cider after you get off the ice!


  Share a positive picture of your kids-- having fun, laughing, doing a trick on the ice, doing something funny.  You can share on social media, with family and friends, etc.


  Tell a friend or family member how much fun you had and talk about the kids. If they happen to be in ear shot that's a bonus, but even if they aren't it's very likely that the word will get back to them. Kids love hearing through the grapevine that their parents are talking about them in positive ways!


  Give every family member a memento of the ice skating Adventure to show it was important to you. It could be a picture you took of them, a small item from the ice rink itself, or something you find or make at home that represents the event. For example-- you could make sugar cookies in the shape of skates; or freeze a pond in the freezer and put little gummy bears like they are skating.


If you see a family member that is really good, or really interested, and the budget allows, you may want to provide some lessons as a reward, or their own personal skates.







During these winter months the nights are longer and the days colder, but that doesn’t mean you have to huddle in blankets beside a fireplace inside until spring arrives. Ice skating, one of the most popular winter pastimes in America, is a perfect opportunity to spend time with family and friends outdoors.






Here are a few ice rinks in historic settings around the country that will make you want to lace up your skates and try them out for yourself. However, the ice rink doesn't need to be in a historical setting to be fun--- whether it's a nearby pond, outdoor rink, indoor rink, or your own special version of a rink, just put on those skates and have some fun. Of course-- be sure to know and follow safety guidelines for wherever you are skating.




Outdoor Ice Rinks in Historical Settings



This outdoor pavilion in Manassas, Virginia borders a 200-year-old train depot and holds plenty of events throughout the year.

Harris Pavilion Ice Rink at Manassas, Virginia


Address9201 Center Street, Manassas,VA 20110

Historic Fact: The railroad junction at Manassas was the scene for two battles during the Civil War, in 1861 and in 1862. The battles left the town almost in ruins, though it was successfully rebuilt.

This outdoor ice rink at Manassas, Virginia, backs up to the railroad tracks and the 103-year-old train depot. Though the trees surrounding the Harris Pavilion ice rink are decorated with lights for the holidays in December, the white lights on top of the pavilion twinkle all year round, giving this ice skating venue an old-fashioned and inviting atmosphere.

The ice rink is located near the main corridor of Manassas, a certified Main Street that was awarded the Great American Main Street Award in 2003. There are more than a dozen restaurants that have popped up within the last decade within walking distance to warm up.




The outdoor rink at University of Michigan's Flint campus is located near the University Pavilion and borders historic Saginaw Street.


University of Michigan-Flint Skating Rink

Address: 300 block, Saginaw St, Flint, MI 48502

Historic Fact: In the early 20th century, Flint served as the headquarters for the newly established General Motors, drawing people to the city and creating a housing boom.

Located just steps from the brick-paved, historic Saginaw Street in downtown Flint, the University of Michigan-Flint outdoor ice rink re-opened in 2015 after a 25-year-long hiatus.

The reopening of the ice rink coincides with what many residents of the town are calling a "renaissance." Thanks in part to local universities like University of Michigan-Flint, more young people are attracted to the historic town, and end up staying.




The picturesque views from The Edgewater in Madison, Wisconsin overlooks Lake Mendota.

The Edgewater Resort Ice Rink in Madison, Wisconsin

Address: 1001 Wisconsin Pl, Madison, WI 53703

Historic FactThe Edgewater has hosted numerous celebrities, including Elvis Presley, Bob Marley, and Sammy Davis Jr.

Since 1948, The Edgewater has brought guests inspiring views of the Wisconsin State Capitol Dome, downtown Madison, and Lake Mendota. While the luxury resort is an obvious choice for business professionals, university faculty, and politicians to hold meetings and conferences, there is no lack of relaxation and entertainment choices after the last meeting of the day.

The 4,000-square-foot ice rink opened in the Grand Plaza after a recent renovation of the resort. The Grand Plaza, a public waterfront terrace, was constructed adjacent to the original hotel building. The terrace is open year round and hosts free concerts, movies, and, of course, the ice rink in wintertime.

Few would disagree that this outdoor ice rink ranks as one of the best spots in Madison to watch the sun set over the water.




The ice rink at the National Gallery of Art, located in the center of the Sculpture Garden off Constitution Ave, is one of the most popular spots on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.


National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden Ice Rink

Address: 700 Constitution Ave., NW, Washington, DC

Historic Fact: Though the current ice rink opened in 1999, there was actually an ice rink on the premises as early as 1976–and before that, ice skating on the Mall was a popular past-time that dates to the 1800s.

Located on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the six-acre National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden opened in the early 1990s. Come winter, the central fountain is transformed into an ice rink that overlooks the NGA and the National Mall. Skate while surrounded by large-scale sculptures by contemporary artists including Sol LeWitt, Roy Lichtenstein, Tony Smith, and many others. Never skated before? The rink offers plenty of private and group lessons, so you can learn how to glide around the ice in one of the prettiest settings in our nation’s capital.




The David S. Ingalls Rink at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, designed by Eero Saarinen and renovated by the architecture firm Kevin Roche John Dinkeloo and Associates.

One of the first indoor skating rinks in the United States was built at New York’s Madison Square Garden in 1879, crystallizing ice skating’s status as a cherished national cold-weather hobby. Other rinks of the same period, including the 1894 North Avenue Ice Palace in Baltimore and the 16,000-square-foot St. Nicholas Rink in Manhattan, used the same technology—considered cutting-edge at the time—as Madison Square Garden. Pipes beneath the floor flooded the rink with water, which was then frozen using a cold brine, creating a slick, glassy canvas for skaters.

These historic rinks are long gone, but Yale University’s curvilinear David S. Ingalls Rink, designed by Eero Saarinen and completed in 1958, still stands. In 2010, the university renovated the structure, home to the Yale ice hockey team and affectionately dubbed “The Whale.” Work included the installation of a display highlighting the first intercollegiate ice hockey game in America, held in 1896, in which Yale tied Johns Hopkins 2-2.




Omni Homestead

Location: Hot Springs, Virginia

Est. 1959

Open: November to March

When skiing pioneer Sepp Kober reinvented Virginia’s Allegheny Mountains as a winter sports haven in the 1950s, he did so in part by outfitting the Omni Homestead with an ice rink and 250 pairs of skates. A popular destination since the 18th century for travelers seeking the perceived medicinal benefits of nearby hot springs, the hotel (now a Historic Hotel of America) was looking for a way to boost winter business. Kober is known as “the father of Southern skiing,” and his plan to convert part of the golf course into a ski slope and introduce other winter sports proved auspicious.

“We did have some sort of skiing or ice skating in the late 1800s,” says Lynn Swann, director of marketing and communications at the Omni Homestead. “But Kober really brought it to the forefront due to modern technology. This became a family-friendly place.”

Today, between 8,000 and 10,000 skaters visit the seasonal rink each year. It has been moved twice from its original location, and has been situated behind the historic main tower overlooking the George Washington and Jefferson national forests since 2012.




The Rink at Rockefeller Center

Location: New York, New York

Est. 1936

Open: October to April


Opened in 1936 as a temporary attraction, the Rockefeller Plaza Outdoor Ice Skating Pond—today called The Rink at Rockefeller Center—boasted modern amenities such as outdoor lighting, a heated changing room, a sound system, and a dining area. In the past 80-plus years of annual holiday skating, notable figures including Lucille Ball, Truman Capote, and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis have skated the rink, as well as Olympians Kristi Yamaguchi, Michelle Kwan, Meryl Davis, and Charlie White.

A longtime cultural icon, the rink was featured on The Howdy Doody Show in the 1950s, and has since been the setting for films Home Alone 2: Lost in New YorkAutumn in New York, and Elf. It was also depicted in Snoopy’s fantasy ice-skating routine in the 1969 movie A Boy Named Charlie Brown.

With views of the Rockefeller Christmas Tree and a gilded 18-foot statue of the Greek god Prometheus, the unique rink (now managed by the Patina Restaurant Group) hosts 165,000 ice skaters per year.

“It’s a special experience to skate here, right in the middle of the Art Deco beauty of Rockefeller Center,” says rink director Carol Olsen. “We see many families coming and parents bringing their children to skate, just as they were brought years before.”




The Depot in Minneapolis

Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Est. 2001

Open: November to March


Open since 2001, the ice rink at the Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel and the Residence Inn Minneapolis Downtown is located in the original 1899 train shed of the Milwaukee Road Depot. At the depot’s service peak, 29 trains per day departed the attached truss-roofed shed. Featuring a 140-foot tower, an elaborate cornice, and inset terra-cotta wreath ornaments, the Renaissance Revival station was a hub for the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad. In 1971, owner Milwaukee Road Company decommissioned passenger train service at the depot and converted the building into office space.

By the late 1970s, the structure had fallen into disrepair and was scheduled for demolition. Saved through advocacy by the Minneapolis Heritage Preservation Commission, the depot remained disused until 1998, when the CSM Corporation purchased the structure and surrounding property to convert it into hotel, restaurant, and event space, including a seasonal rink. From Thanksgiving Day through March, skaters can rent their gear on site and take in views of the city from the floor-to-ceiling windows.


Photo Location

Take a selfie of you and your family on your ice skating outing and post it to your social media sties with the hashtags #familyskate and #MyDiscoveryDestination

by Winter Fun:


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