There’s a great song in the musical Bye, Bye Birdie (actually the whole musical is filled with great songs) that talks about kids. The words are: “Kids! What’s the matter with kids today . . .  Why can’t they be like we were, perfect in every way . . .” A sentiment that every parent has felt at some point, but the truth is, kids haven’t changed all that much and you were never perfect in every way.

Kids, especially the little ones, still like many of the same things that kids have always liked. They still like to have their face painted, they still like to fly kites with Mom or Dad, they like silly songs, magicians and they love it when people read to them. All of that is part of the Outer Banks experience.

Every Wednesday is Kid’s Day at Kitty Hawk Kites in Nags Head–that’s the main store. Face painting, a kite making workshop–the kite really flies, games and it’s all free. True insanity of the best kind. (

Also, Kitty Hawk Kites bills itself as the largest kite store in the world–maybe yes, maybe no . . .  but they do have a lot of kites. Everything from remarkably easy to fly parafoils to some of the most intricate stunt kites available. Flying from the beach or the top of Jockeys Ridge with kids in tow are truly memories to be cherished.

Kitty Hawk Kites is not the only kite store on the Outer Banks. Flying Smiles Kites is located in Corolla and they have partnered with the Whalehead Club offering free kite flying lessons every Tuesday.(

The Whalehead Club is part of Currituck County Heritage Park, that includes the Currituck Beach Lighthouse and the Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education. The view from the top of the lighthouse is amazing–make sure the little legs accompanying you can make it to the top and back down. And, the Center for Wildlife Education is one of the most fascinating small museum you will ever encounter. (252-453-0221)

The museum does an amazing job of telling both the environmental and human history of the Currituck Sound. Great for parents and kids. The Museum also has some of the best kid friendly programs on the Outer Banks.

The Village of Duck, which is just about halfway between Nags Head and Corolla, has turned Tuesday through Thursday mornings into kid’s time. Theatre on Tuesdays, magic on Wednesday and stories on Thursdays. (

Not to leave Manteo out of the mix, the Elizabethan Gardens, on the far side of Manteo, has a full schedule of family friendly events. Storybook Tuesday, Family Fun Scavenger Hunt on Wednesday and Scentsational Thursdays. Scentsational Thursday is really different and could be a lot of fun. This is the Elizabethan Garden’s description: “Engage young senses in discovering a diversity of plants by touching, smelling, hearing, tasting and seeing in this one-hour discovery for you and your child. In addition to exploring with their senses, all participants will plant something to take home.” (

Lot’s to do with the kids, but don’t forget to spend some time at the beach. That is, after all, why folks come to the Outer Banks.

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