Best Drop-In Kids’ Day Care, August 2013

When last-minute appointments or ailing baby–sitters disrupt your plans, KidsPark, in Northridge, is a blessing. The colorful space is open Monday through Saturday (times vary) as well as Sunday afternoons. A one-page application form and $25 registration fee are all that’s required for first-timers. After that, just show up with the kids, sign them in, and vamoose. Rates are reasonable ($8 per hour for the first child, with discounts for siblings), and the staff keeps things lively, whether in the play kitchen or theater or on the mini basketball court. Arts and crafts sessions and hourly hide-and-seek are among the activities. Morning and afternoon snacks are included; lunch or dinner can be ordered for a modest fee. The six-and-older crowd has access to PS3 stations and air hockey. Sweet.