Much to the delight of skiers on the west coast, Mammoth Mountain is getting pummeled with record-breaking snow this winter. But for families visiting the area, there may be a need to find a few things to do off the slopes after the kids have melted down and the hot chocolate just isn’t cutting it anymore. Check out these other family-friendly activities that are not only fun, but also free! 

1. Woolly’s Saturday Parade in The Village

Everyone loves a parade, especially when the star is Mammoth Mountain’s loveable mascot, Woolly. Now through April 15, enjoy Woolly’s Parade every Saturday in the Village at Mammoth, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Join Woolly and friends from Ski and Snowboard School for music, dancing, face-painting and a parade through The Village at Mammoth. A must-attend kids event for all ages.

2. Snowshoe or cross-country ski to Minaret Vista

While you may need to rent equipment if you don’t have the gear for this, the road to Minaret Vista is completely free for explorers to check out. You can park at the Main Lodge parking area and catch the road in front of the Mammoth Mountain Inn. Make sure to stay to the far righthand side of the trail because you will be going against downhill ski traffic. For an added thrill, enjoy this activity under the full moon. 

3. Sledding, Snowballs & More

The best thing about sledding is you can do it almost anywhere and several lodging properties even have sleds for guests to borrow. Grab your sled and head to the nearest small (or large, depending on how adventurous you are feeling) hill. The best hills for sledding on your own are just outside of town off the Mammoth Scenic Loop or along the 395 corridor. Local parks like Shady Rest are great if you want to pull younger kids around in the snow. Use common sense and avoid areas with a lot of trees or run outs into roads and consider wearing a helmet for warmth and protection. Sledding is prohibited at the ski area—please observe the posted signs. 

How about a family snowball fight? Shady Rest Park is also a great area to let off a little steam and have at it. While you are there, take some time to build a family snowman or simply fall back into a nice pillow and get your snow angel on. These classic snow activities are ones that every kid should experience when they visit this winter destination. 

4. Visit the Mammoth Lakes Welcome Center

The award winning welcome center and staff is the first step in making the most out of your visit to Mammoth Lakes. Located within the Inyo National Forest, it is operated by the U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service and Mammoth Lakes Tourism, which means it's a one-stop shop for visitors. Beyond the thoughtfully stocked books, maps and gift shop, the center offers free interpretive walks and talks, and access to trails for cross-country skiing is literally just outside the front door.