It only happens once every four years—an extra day of February. One different way to celebrate is by making like one of the coolest animals, the frog, who just happens to leap and hop everywhere. These little green amphibians are some of the best pint-sized leapers in the world, so check them out in ponds, zoos, museums, and (gulp!) restaurants near you for the ultimate Leap Year celebration.
photo: Juhan Sonin via flickr
Natural History Museum, Nature Lab and Gardens
Ever wonder how a mama frog lays her eggs, or think about how a frog makes his signature croaking sound? Learn all about bullfrogs, toads and other native southern California amphibians via larger than life touch screens and live animal exhibits in the Labs. Then, take what you’ve learned outside to the Nature Gardens for a look at wildlife, including frogs and tadpoles, in their natural habitat. All the running and exploring are sure to get the wiggles out of your little tadpoles, so that it will be smooth swimming for the rest of the day. Pack a picnic lunch and make a day of it.
900 Exposition Blvd
photo: Norm K. via yelp
See Kermit the Frog
Sure you’ve seen the 12 foot tall Kermit the Frog on the top of the Jim Henson Studio building, but have you ever wondered what’s behind the gates? If you call in advance, you can schedule a tour of up to eight people for a behind the scenes look at the Muppets and magic created by Jim Henson. From Fraggles to Sesame Street, you’ll see exactly what it takes to make these amazing puppets. So, next time your kids point and scream at their favorite green Muppet pull over and take a closer look, then use that time to call and set up a tour date. Did we mention it’s free?
Jim Henson Studios
1416 N LaBrea Ave
Of course you’ve seen the lions, tigers and bears at the LA Zoo. But now it’s time to make time for some of the rarest amphibians, invertebrates, and reptiles in the world at the LAIR. It’s one of the largest of its kind in the nation where families can walk through different climates and regions to truly understand the environments of these creatures. Who knows, your kids just might find a favorite new froggy friend like the Sonoran toad, or the golden poison dart frog. Don’t worry, these guys can’t come home in little pockets.
5333 Zoo Drive
Frogs Legs at the Gumbo Pot
Every wonder what frogs legs taste like? Well, get ready to find out. The Gumbo Pot at the Original Farmer’s Market sells them by the pair, fried or grilled with a spicy sweet dipping sauce. If the kids aren’t ready to jump into a plate of these, there are tons of other options on the menu including simple po’boy sandwiches and saucy gumbos. Parents can wash it all down with a craft beer from EB’s bar and kids can sip on fresh squeezed lemonade from Gill’s Old Fashioned Ice Cream which are both right next to the Gumbo Pot.
6333 West Third St.
photo: Karen B. via yelp
Frog Frozen Yogurt
If frog legs aren’t your thing (yeah, we get it), you can still eat (at) frog when you swing by Frog Frozen Yogurt in Hollywood for a cool swirl of froyo. Choose from a ton of different toppings and crazy combos that would make Willy Wonka jealous. Not down to travel? Frog’s is the only froyo franchise that currently delivers. Whether it’s chocolate, vanilla, or coffee, you can get Frog froyo delivered right to your doorstep by the pink delivery frog (car). It’s a kid’s dream come true, and one less car ride for mom. Plus newbies get $2 off their first delivery.
1550 North Cahuenga Blvd.
photo: Nancy L. via yelp
Flowers, trees, grassy knolls—these are all things you can find at Descanso Gardens. But, if you look close enough, you can find tadpoles and frogs swimming in and around the pond areas in the park. Take a look at the waters near the Japanese Tea Gardens and the pond just west of the Center Circle. Crouch down and get an up close and personal look at these little guys in various stages of frogdom.
1418 Descanso Dr.
La Canada Flintridge
Any other frog themed or frog filled spots you can add to the list for Leap Year? Let us know in the comments below.
—Christina Montoya Fiedler
additional image of girl holding frog by Tim Pierce via flickr