8 Parents’ Night Out options (PNO)

Parents Night Out is a fantastic excuse for a drop-off kid party in which children eat pizza, have dessert (gasp!), watch movies, and play with other kids of a similar age until way past their bedtimes. The formula varies depending on which organization is playing host. In some cases, your kids will do gymnastics, in others they’ll zonk out in front of Kung Fu Panda.

Parents Night Out

Regardless, you’ll hurry back on a deadline and bring home your child after date night and scrub, brush, and tuck into bed.

Might one of these seven fun options work for your family? Only you can determine that, but I’d love to hear your experiences in the comments!

  1. Head over Heels. In Emeryville, kids over age 4 can flip, bounce, and dine before they chill out with a movie from 6pm to 10:30 every Friday night. $35 for one, $30 for two or more children.
  2. Habitot. In Berkeley, this PNO includes supervised museum exploration for kids age 2 to 7 and a pizza dinner from 5:30pm to 9:30 on the fourth Friday of each month (except during the holidays). $35/$25 each sibling.
  3. Berkeley YMCA. Called Kids Night Out, this program is for children age 2 to 11 for 5pm to 10pm on Saturdays and includes age-appropriate recreation activities (including swimming for ages 5 and up) and crafts to go with your pizza. $30 for members/$41 non-members.
  4. Color Me Mine. In Alameda it’s called Kids Night Out for good reason, kids can paint pottery and eat ice cream before their movie of the month from 6pm to 9pm on occasional Saturdays. No age restrictions on the website but judge for yourself if your child can make it til 9. $20/+$17 each sibling.
  5. JCC. In both Oakland and Berkeley, parents can drop children off one Saturday a month from 5:30 to 10pm. $45/+$25 each sibling. $10 Discount for members. Kids over age 4 make dinner together, play games, and watch a movie together.
  6. Stitch. In NW Berkeley, drop your kid, age 6 or older, from 6-8:30pm on occasional Friday nights (see schedule). Light dinner (quesadillas from Picante) and sewing materials included for $25/+$15 each sibling.
  7. Brushstrokes. Kids over age 5 enjoy a pizza and pottery party from 6pm to 8:30 on the last Friday of the month in Berkeley. Pizza dinner, pottery, and paint included. $30/+$25 each sibling.
  8. Cal Youth Gymnastics. The Golden Bear PNO program from 6pm to 10pm on periodic Saturdays promises food, fun, games, and lots of gymnastics with no prior experience required. $25 per child.

As of this writing, I couldn’t determine if Play Cafe or Studio Grow are still holding their babysitting masquerading as kid parties.

In all cases, advance registration is strongly suggested if not required. Let me know which of these your child likes… and who has the best pizza!