Yu Kids Island {Vernon Hills}

During the long Chicago winters, it can be challenging to find indoor play spaces that can accommodate the boundless energy of little ones who are tired of being cooped up in the house. Yu Kids Island, located in Westfield Hawthorn Shopping Center in Vernon Hills, is the perfect solution to cabin fever.

Yu Kids Island , Vernon Hills
Yu Kids Island in Vernon Hills. Photo Credit: Laura Otto

Yu Kids Island looks like a life-size version of the Candyland board game. The colorful, spacious play area has a number of attractions that will send your munchkins running from your arms with glee: a large moon jump, spinning “trees” with hanging “balls” that they can climb up or swing from, rotating play structures, a puppy teeter-totter, and even a separate play area for babies, to name a few.

Yu Kids Island, Vernon Hills
Photo Credit: L. Thomas

Perhaps most unique is the dancing balloon room, an enclosed area full of giant balloons that swirl and fly through the air, propelled by giant fans. Your kids will love jumping and spinning around the room in an attempt to catch the balloons.

Yu Kids Island, Vernon HIlls
Yu Kids Island in Vernon Hills. Photo Credit: Laura Otto

Parents are welcome to participate in the fun with their children (but are not allowed on the equipment). If you need a little break, the staff is great about keeping the kiddos entertained–they will help your children with the climbing structures, start a raucous game of hide-and-go-seek, or offer the kids some crayons and coloring pages if they need some quiet time.

Yu Kids Island, Vernon Hills
Photo Credit: L. Thomas

While the kids play, parents can take advantage of free Wi-Fi and comfy benches. Because there is only one entrance into the play area–and the exit is locked and under constant watch by a staff member–you can rest assured that your kids can’t escape without you noticing. The entire play area is also visible from virtually any seating area.

If you need some alone time–or want to power shop without dragging the kids with you–Yu Kids Island also offers a drop-off child care service for a flat two-hour rate.

Yu Kids Island, Vernon HIlls
Photo Source: Yu Kids Island on Facebook

Yu Kids Island also hosts a number of special events, such as special visits by your child’s favorite film characters. Your child will love to meet a life-size Minion and take photos with Elsa! There are also a number of birthday party packages.

To play at Yu Kids Island, children must be 48” tall or shorter and must wear socks (which are available for purchase if you forget them). In addition to the Vernon Hills location, there is a second location in Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg.

Prices are listed here, but the most affordable option is to purchase a five-visit pass or a 10-visit pass. Once you pay admission, it is valid for the entire day, so you can come and go as you please. Discounted admission is available during the last business hour of the day.

Yu Kids Island, Vernon Hills
Yu Kids Island in Vernon Hills. Photo Credit: Laura Otto

Yu Kids Island
122 Hawthorn Center, Vernon Hills
(847) 680-3800 | Facebook


Disclosure: Yu Kids Island is a Little Lake County paid advertising partner.

Dance academy of Libertyville
About Laura Otto 28 Articles
Laura Otto is an associate professor at Mount Mary University in Milwaukee, where she teaches courses in journalism, writing for new media and creative writing. She lives in Vernon Hills with her husband, Matt, and three kids: Cole (19), Maya (7) and Shane (4). When she isn’t grading papers or scrubbing crayon off the walls, she can be found playing Downton Abbey trivia games on Facebook or doodling all over her kids’ homework.

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