Arizona may be known for its clear days and lots of sunshine, but that doesn’t mean it never has a gray day. If you live just south of Phoenix in Chandler and find the clouds gathering and covering the bright sun, it might be time to head indoors and find some fun activities. Inclement weather is the perfect time to try something new and explore places you haven’t visited before. So before you start bemoaning the weather, why not make the best of it? Here are some family-friendly attractions that are perfect for whiling away a gray afternoon in Chandler.

Chandler Museum

A black and white view of a street of houses on a gloomy day in Chandler, Arizona

Chandler Arizona 85226” licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Flickr by kevin dooley

Visiting a local museum is a great way to learn about your own town’s history and feel a deeper sense of community and connection to the place you live. The Chandler Museum is located at 300 S. Chandler Village Drive beside Price Park and the historic McCullough-Price house with which the museum shares a courtyard and outdoor gathering space. The museum offers a look into the past of Chandler through exhibitions that change through the seasons along with nationally traveling exhibitions about art, history, and culture. It also offers community programs and other learning opportunities.

The Chandler Museum’s hours are Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is free, making this a great place for all ages to enjoy a gray afternoon if you don’t want to spend a lot of money. If you do decide to do a little shopping, check out the museum store where you can find locally made gifts that represent the history and culture of Chandler. It’s always good to support local artists while also supporting the free museum so your family and others can continue to enjoy it.

Merchant Square Antique Marketplace

If you live in Chandler and love antiques then you probably know about the Merchant Square Antique Marketplace, and a rainy day is a perfect time to get lost in here for an afternoon. This 58,000-square-foot indoor space houses 250 different merchants and is the largest antique boutique in the Phoenix area. You and your kids can spend hours in here browsing the different shops that range from handmade goods to unique antique furniture to knickknacks and much more. It has something for everyone, so you can browse old books while the kids shop for trendy vintage clothing.

The Merchant Square Antique Marketplace is located at 1509 N. Arizona Ave. in Chandler, and its hours are Monday to Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you start to feel peckish after browsing through the antiques then stop by the American Way Market Cafe and enjoy its antique decor and repurposed furnishings. You can treat yourself to a meal of handmade artisan bread, slow-cooked meats, and local fresh produce paired with soda or a nice cup of joe.

Burst of Butterflies Create and Paint Studio

Burst of Butterflies Create and Paint Studio is an art studio offering fun for all ages. This family-owned business offers a creative space to help nurture art in the community. You can drop by the studio to create art in several mediums including pottery painting, canvas painting, glass fusing, and pallet art. For just $5, you can buy a blank mug, plate, or other pottery design to paint and have fired, or pick your favorite from over 500 canvas design templates for a fun and contemplative afternoon of painting. What better way to brighten a gray day than with some paint?

Burst of Butterflies Create and Paint Studio also offers take-home art kits if you want to spend a rainy day painting in your living room. Sign your kids up for some fun art camps to keep them learning and engaged. Its open hours are on Wednesday to Monday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and on Tuesday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Current class options, if your want to learn a new skill, include wheel-thrown pottery and glass fusing to make a pendant. You can book the studio for private parties such as birthdays or baby showers.

Makutu’s Island

Makutu’s Island is a kids’ play facility offering many fun activities to keep your kids entertained and interacting for hours while you can relax in the parents’ lounge. The centerpiece of Makutu’s Island is a massive play tree that features secret caves, awesome slides, and plenty of places to play and explore. Oscar’s Lagoon is its toddler play area outfitted with soft age-appropriate activities and toys to keep the little ones safe and happy. Older kids can go bungee jumping at Uncle Max’s Bungee Jump station, or head into the Inferno Arcade to enjoy the arcade games.

Makutu’s Island is the perfect spot to take the kids for some indoor exercise and playtime. The all-day price for children ages 1 through 17 is $18.56 plus tax, with one free adult per child. An additional adult is $4.46 plus tax if they join the child in tree-play, or free with access to the arcade and Kiki’s Cafe. The hours are 3 to 7 p.m. on Monday through Thursday, 1 to 8 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday and school holidays.Chandler has few gray days, but when the clouds do come around you might find yourself looking for something to do indoors. That’s when you might want to try one of the ideas on this list brought to you by Crème de la Crème of Chandler. We’d love to hear from you if you’ve been to any of our suggestions and what you thought of it. What’s your favorite way to pass a gray day? Drop us a line with your best recommendation of an indoor spot for family fun while you wait out the weather.