Don’t tell anyone, but I had to stand on my tiptoes as a kid to meet the height requirement for my first roller coaster. Rides for the younger crew can be hard to come by at county fairs and regular amusement parks. We’ve visited Remlinger Farms several years in a row for their attractions that are friendly to my preschooler.
On our recent visit, we brought along my toddler for his very own first roller coaster ride — no tippy toes required (he’s quite tall).
Remlinger Farms: pro tip
Summer weekends can get busy, but we reserved admission for a weekday and showed up right as the park opened. My 5-year-old, a Remlinger expert at this point, immediately headed for a quick stop on the Flying Pumpkin ride before dashing off to the roller coaster.
My toddler son was hot on her heels and felt ecstatic that he could ride the coaster without an adult. The minimum height is 33 inches, or 3 feet to ride alone. I went once with them to make sure they remembered the sudden jerk when the coaster starts up the track. After that, I let them enjoy the rare taste of youthful independence.
No one was in line as the ride came to a stop (weekday morning perks!), so the kids stayed in their seats again. And again. And again. The friendly young women operating it just giggled and waved at them each time the car passed. I finally coaxed the kids into trying other rides, but it wasn’t the last we’d see of the coaster.
Anyone who’s ever visited epic theme parks likely remembers the sweat-drenched slog over what seems like miles between rides. Not so at Remlinger Farms! The park is fairly easily covered with sturdy short legs or a stroller. We moved from the roller coaster space to check out the other side of the park in just a few minutes, stopping to float on the canoe water ride on the way.
The sunniest part of the park hosts the large carousel, swings and giant slide. On a hot day, I’d stop there first and then migrate back toward the shade closer to the front of the park (or the antique car ride). It’s also the area with the tallest height restrictions, so if you have tiny tots on your hands, consider sticking toward the pumpkins and barrel ride where they’ll be able to ride almost everything with an adult. My tall 2-year-old couldn’t ride the Wrecking Ball or the Pedal Cars, but didn’t face disappointment on any of the other rides.
Remlinger Farms: food
The onsite restaurant has a short, kid-friendly menu with sandwiches, burgers and chicken fingers. There aren’t too many traditionally healthy options, but we opted for convenience on our visit. Outside food isn’t allowed in the park, but you can exit and re-enter to have snacks from the car.
Once we refueled, we headed back to our favorite rides (you guessed it, the roller coaster!). Maybe it was just the low-key weekday, but the staff were particularly easygoing on our visit. They rotate between rides to facilitate breaks, so we made friends with several of them throughout the day. They remembered the kids, let us ride multiple times in a row where possible and cracked silly jokes to keep things entertaining.
We were having so much fun that I nudged naptime to a car nap so we could spend more time at the park. We spent about four hours there and, while it got busier in the afternoon, our weekday stay never felt uncomfortably packed. Everyone’s already looking forward to the fall festival!
2022: a spruced-up Remlinger Farms
We somehow landed on the hottest weekend of the year to date for our annual return to Remlinger Farms, but staff handled it remarkably well and the kids were delighted as always.
A giant porch swing now waits outside the entrance doors. It’s perfect entertainment if you arrive a bit too early, but you’ll have to wait with other families eager for their photo opp.
Most of the rides remain the same (we still love you, Mine Twister roller coaster), but the carousel got a much-needed shade structure that keeps the saddles from getting too hot on sunny days. The Tolt River Train Ride is still out of commission, but a new tractor-pulled hay ride will take you on a tour of the grounds. There is only one car, so be prepared for a bit of a wait in the sun if you opt for a ride.
Last year’s jumping pad was a huge hit, but the new monster truck bounce house is a real crowd pleaser. My 3-year-old even bonded with another kid over who could make the funniest sounds when bouncing. Make this a stop when ride lines are too long or when the sun is too brutal since it’s a great covered area with a bit of seating for caregivers.
Despite visiting during peak season, the only time we had to wait in line for more than five minutes was for food. The indoor kids’ area has added a LEGO table that kept my kids happy, and the adults also had a chance to try out the new brewery with lunch. For $7 you can grab a pint or a taster flight of four beers.
While admission prices keep going up every year, this is still a family favorite where my kids can happily spend a whole day!
Remlinger Farms: If you go
Hours: The Fun Park is open 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Wednesday-Sunday until Labor Day. In the fall, they are open on weekends through Halloween.
Tickets: Tickets are $21.95 per person and can be reserved online or purchased on arrival. Children under 2 are free. Reserve an optional pony ride upon entry or when you make a reservation for an additional $7 per child (ages 2-10 and weighing under 100 pounds).
Food: An on-site restaurant sells food ranging from $7-15. Food from home can be consumed at picnic tables just outside the entrance.
Restrooms and parking: Reasonably clean restrooms (as well as changing tables) available in the restaurant and adjacent to the sand pit area. Parking is free and there are several large lots to accommodate busy weekends.
Originally published August 2021; updated July 2022