At Foss Swim School, they recognize that learning to swim is a life-saving skill, especially for vacationing families. The Foss program is structured to teach the fundamentals that lead to independence in the water.* Parents of a Foss student can feel confident knowing their child has been taught the basics of water safety and are building skills towards becoming a strong, safe and confident swimmer.
* Swim instruction does not replace parental supervision. Please remain vigilant when enjoying the water with your family.
If a beautiful family friendly vacation is on your bucket list, Blue Harbor Resort is a must visit. Situated in Sheboygan, about two hours north of Lake County, the resort sits on the shores of Lake Michigan with endless opportunities for family fun. Our family went up a few years ago and now that the kids have grown we’re ready to head back. It is easy to see why!
We arrived on a busy weekend when a festival was going on next to the resort, we didn’t care to check it out because…water park. Parking was easy and the check-in process was efficient in the vast lobby. We were upgraded to a larger suite due to a low census; our room and bath were clean and well-stocked, and the beds were wonderful. Of note, the resort was accommodating to our group of three families wanting to share one suite; I’m learning this is more rare as our families grow, so check it out!
Our group wasted no time and booked it to the water park. The benefit of vacation is that you can eat anything because you walk everywhere, especially at this resort with villas outside of the actual hotel. We were essentially at the opposite end of the hotel, so our umbrella strollers were a must for the little ones, and we brought our own towels for the long walk back to the room since pool towels must stay at the water park.
The indoor water park boasts a four-story climbing structure with water features that the children can work on their own amongst the cargo nets, suspension bridges and stairs. The activity pool held our attention for the longest time as there were floating creatures in the water for the kids to climb on, along with a floating lily pad pathway for the kids to try to get across the pool (my husband helped them attempt this,) and basketball.
Our children wore life vests we brought from home (approved by the U.S. Coast Guard) and they gave us peace of mind and allowed the kids more freedom in the pools. The small splash pad and very low-depth pool would have been perfect for our crew, except it wasn’t fenced in and with the deeper waters nearby we were running (“No running in the water park!”) after little ones nonstop.
The lazy river is always a crowd pleaser and it allowed us parents to float for a whole three minutes. A large whirlpool for relaxation is also inside of the water park (this is the one place where you may actually get some quiet in the park;) however, kids under age 14 are allowed in with adult supervision.
I’d recommend this water park mostly for families with elementary-age and older kids. Our very young crew couldn’t take advantage off all the water features, and the one space of small slides that our toddlers used has since been converted to a surfing simulator. But that doesn’t mean young families can’t have fun here!
Now that our kids are older and ready for some thrills, this water park has just enough for a day or two of fun. Often young children cannot ride slides, but the two tube slides are accessible to anyone, provided they can sit in the tube and hold the handles (life vests are even allowed on these two slides.) Our daughter loved these slides and asked to go over and over again at a very young age (read age two.). The body slides are meant for individual swimmers over 42 inches tall, and allow for exciting racing – next time this is on our list!
The newest feature is their surf simulator. They offer surfing lessons (extra charge) or just some fun on the waves. We can’t wait to board on this with our kids, I’m sure many laughs are to follow.
A small outdoor pool makes this resort different than many others within driving distance in that you can actually get some sun too. The beach is only steps away and you can go freeze in Lake Michigan if you want to. I won’t judge, but I won’t go with you. We went during cooler months, but the outdoor pool was still open and the kids and I enjoyed playing out there alone. The resort hosts many family friendly activities (the bonfires on the beach are memorable!) Check their website for events planned during your stay to make it a more well-rounded experience.
Although this park is very similar to others nearby, Blue Harbor Resort feels nothing like a Midwestern hotel. The resort has multiple restaurants, a snack bar, a cute ice cream shop (it is possible that we visited this more than five times.) They have gone above and beyond to provide frequent family activities indoors and out. Walking along Lake Michigan is relaxing and fun for kids of all ages, the rock collecting that takes place on those shores is unreal. I have never been to Cape Cod, but for us, this is the closest we’re going to get.
Foss Swim School offers a year-round program that is session-based by season and includes Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall sessions. Each session offers Weekly Swim Lessons, 4-Week Progress-Builder Swim Camps® and/or 2-Week Progress-Builder® Swim Camps. Each option is designed to give families, instructors, and most importantly, your swimmer a definable time to focus on swimming. Seasonal sessions are more effective than continuous programs and deliver predictable, quality results. Spring session starts on March 13th, registration is now open!
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