Kids
1997 Readers Poll
1997 Critics Picks
Best Baby Presents

For high-end baby commemoratives, this is the place. Previous winner, Li'l Things ('95 and '96) takes second.

La Menagerie
512/326-4090

Best Branch Library

Austin's kids don't take chances when it comes to good books: They head for library headquarters.

Best Camps/Classes

Sweeping two categories, the newly renamed Nature & Science Center is the place to go to learn all about Austin-area ecosystems, wildlife, conservation efforts, and natural history. The center says that despite the readers kudos, theirs is not technically a "drop-off" childcare facility, and that you should call ahead for program information.

Austin Nature & Science Center
301 Nature Center Dr.
512/327-8180

Best Children's Bookstore (new)

Croak it from the hilltop: Toad Hall is the winner of this category since 1994.

Toad Hall
1206 W. 38th, Ste. 1101
512/323-2665

Best Children's Bookstore (Used)

Even kids have heard HPB's new ads: "You're a book lover, you're happy when you read."

Half-Price Books
3110 Guadalupe
512/451-4463
www.halfpricebooks.com/

Best Children's Clothing

Clothing for the kiddie cool set. Whether or not your child is a follower of fashion, they'll outgrow 'em before they wear 'em out.

The Gap
Gap Kids, Barton Creek Square, 512/328-6288
2354 Guadalupe, 512/482-0355
Gap Kids, Highland Mall, 512/452-5440
Gap Kids, 11200 Lakeline Mall Dr., 512/257-1774

photograph by Minh Carrico   Minh Carrico

Best Children's Entertainer

Creative, captivating, cute, classy, but not a clown: Captain Connie keeps the kids cutting up with her curious capers.

Best Children's Resale Clothing

Yet another category Austin shoppers know well: old clothing. This year, Between Friends and Second Time Around tie.

Between Friends
8108 Mesa
512/346-1656

Second Time Around

Best Children's Shoe Store

Payless beat out last year's winner, Sandy's, by a foot. The pair have been alternating as winners for the past four years.

Payless Shoesource
2301 E. Seventh, 512/472-8616
2326 S. Congress, 512/326-4515
www.payless.com/

Best Children's Video Selection

It's everywhere!

Blockbuster
1112-A N. Lamar
512/440-7710
www.blockbuster.com/

photograph by Minh Carrico   Minh Carrico

Best Drop-Off Childcare

Sweeping two categories, the newly renamed Nature & Science Center is the place to go to learn all about Austin-area ecosystems, wildlife, conservation efforts, and natural history. The center says that despite the readers kudos, theirs is not technically a "drop-off" childcare facility, and that you should call ahead for program information.

Austin Nature & Science Center
301 Nature Center Dr.
512/327-8180

Best Kids' Party Supplies

Don't take the kids or you'll leave with at least one of everything.

Party Pig Superstore
2900 W. Anderson, 512/454-2518
Tech Ridge Shopping Center, I-35 & Parmer
5601 Brodie, 512/892-2721

Best Kids' Space

Open Door, and its director Nira, have an "inconspicuous" approach to teaching, so that kids learn while having fun. They welcome pre-school kids of various learning levels and abilities.

Open Door
603 Bouldin, 512/445-2698
1717 W. 10th, 512/477-9632
3804 Cherrywood, 512/481-0775

Best Playground/Park

What can we say about Austin's favorite city park? It's where kids go to play, splash, learn, and ride the Zilker Zepher.

Zilker Park
2100 Barton Springs Rd.
512/974-6700
www.austintexas.gov

Best Restaurant

Actually, Hang Town is kid-friendly because they serve the traditional burger-fries-shake fare with such panache that parents don't mind coming back for more.

Best Toy Store For Kids

It was neck and neck with Terra Toys, but Geoffrey's neck is longer.

Toys R Us
4025 Capital of Texas Hwy.
512/441-7216

 
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