Things to Do in the Inland Empire With Your Pre-Teen

Once kids reach a certain age, there begins the lament of “There’s nothing to do,” or “I’m bored,” on a weekly, daily, or (on really bad days) an hourly basis.  While my usual philosophy to these cries is to assign a chore, once kids reach a certain age you can’t take it for granted when they want to hang out with you because it won’t last much longer.  To that end, here is a collection of fun stuff you can do with your pre-teen here in the Inland Empire.

Like a classic with staying power, skate parties, sessions, and rinks are still around because it’s simple fun, gets your blood pumping, and comes with dance music!  Our area offers us Skate Express in Chino, Cal Skate in Grand Terrace, Roller City 2001 in Riverside, and Roller City Plus in Fontana.  The Inland Empire area also brings us quite a few ice skating rinks like IceTown in Riverside, Ontario Center Ice Arena and Ontario Ice Skating Center both totally different places in Ontario, and last but not least Desert Ice Castle in Cathedral City.


Laser tag can also offer an exciting time or a good party.  We have Laser Quest in Chino, Laser Island in Upland, and Triple O Lazer Tag in Moreno Valley.  Paintball takes this notion up a notch, Jungle Island Paintball & Airsoft Park in Lake Elsinore comes complete with a Little Warrior Arena especially for kids 6-12.  Along with Action Star Games Paintball Park in Colton and SC Village Paintball & Airsoft Park in Corona both with a minimum age requirement of 10, the inland has your pre-teen covered.  

If heart racing is how you like your fun, try indoor go kart racing at K1 Speed in Ontario, San Bernardino Raceway, or Pole Position Raceway in Corona.  Adams Motorsports Park in Riverside not only has outdoor kart racing but a Racing Academy with classes for ages 5-95 and a plethora of other motorsports available to watch.  The Auto Club Speedway in Fontana offers a quite a few races and other events to watch as well.

If your family enjoys watching sports together, save money on gas and support a local team.  Minor league baseball teams like The Inland Empire 66ersRancho Cucamonga Quakes, and Lake Elsinore Storm, have been around for years and offer tons of fun and great deals for families.  If baseball isn’t your thing, try heading to the Citizens Business Bank Arena to watch the Ontario Reign hockey team or the Ontario Fury arena soccer team or any number of other special events.

Lately my pre-teen has been singing “Let It Go” all day non stop on repeat so that must mean its time to take her to a show!  The Inland Empire has TONS to offer in terms of local theatre.  From a show at Landis Performing Arts Center in Riverside to California Theater of the Performing Arts in San Bernardino or the Lewis Family Playhouse in Rancho Cucamonga the inland has got you covered.  Plus there is even more theater in our community if you can appreciate all of it that exists on a smaller scale as well.  These theaters include but are not limited to: the Yucaipa Little TheatreLifeHouse Theater in Redlands, Redlands Theatre FestivalOld Town Temecula Community TheaterChino Community Theatre and the list goes on.  There are players and productions ALL OVER the Inland Empire.


With the weather warming up, the days are quickly approaching when places like The Cove Waterpark in Riverside, Soak City in Palm Springs, Splash Kingdom in Redlands will be opening.  A brand new Drop Zone water park in Perris is set to open by Memorial Day.  There are a few local parks that also offer water play including Celebration Park in Moreno Valley, Doty Trust Park in Riverside, or Citrus Park in Corona.  Days vary as to when they “turn the water on” so check with your local park for the days and times. 


View from Rancho Jurupa Park.

If you have an outdoorsy kid that loves to camp, fish, hike, bike, or just generally explore may I suggest Rancho Jurupa Park in Riverside or Lake Perris in Moreno Valley if you need to add boating to that list.  The former has a splash pad and miniature and disc golf courses and the latter not only offers you the opportunity to boat but to watch the occasional boat race.  To be honest though, growing up here some of my favorite parks were the San Bernardino County Regional Parks, Prado (for the tadpoles) and Guasti (for the pool) in particular.  Some city parks can offer up some great experiences too like Fairmount Park in Riverside (hungry ducks anyone?), look around and find one the whole family can enjoy!

things_to_do_inland_empire_riverside_fairmount_parkThe last thing I wanted to share was that good old Fiesta Village, an IE classic for almost 45 years, has kart racing, laser tag, a water park, outdoor rollerskating, and batting cages along with all the other fun stuff like mini-golf, arcade games, and amusement rides that accompany your typical Family Fun Zone.  There are reasons a classic remains a classic.    

Celina Atkinson

Writer at Inland Moms
Celina is a wife and mother of three that has lived in the Inland Empire most of her 36 years and continually since the birth of her children.If she’s not baking, she’s either transporting her kids to and fro, or lost in some chasm of pop culture that she’s currently obsessed with.She blogs at Nerdy Baker.

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