Places to Eat and Play with Kids in the Upstate

Posted on | No Comments

Do you ever get tired of going to fast food places just so your kid can play in the play area? While these primary-colored playgrounds are life-savers some days, there are times when you want to eat something other than a fast food combo. Thankfully, there are some local restaurants that offer more than fast food, as well as fun play options for kids. If you are looking for some sit-down restaurant options for your family, here are some nearby that make everyone happy.

The play areas at these locations range from professionally installed play structures to an empty piece of land to run around on. Please take this into consideration when releasing your child to go explore the play areas. 

Places to Eat and Play in Spartanburg

Fr8 Yard

Fr8 Yard in Downtown Spartanburg is a kid-friendly restaurant and outdoor biergarten. First, it is all outdoors, so you do not have to worry about your kid making too much noise. Next, it has ping-pong tables and cornhole games available to play free of charge. In addition to great adult beverages, Fr8 Yard also has a huge television screen showing major sporting events, plus live music some evenings. Offering a selection of yard dogs, grilled cheese, fries, and more, your whole family will find something they want to try. Not only that, it’s also located right next to Sparkle City Mini Putt. A free mini golf course, that several downtown businesses will provide putters on loan for use.

Fr8 yard! Kids can run around and play. There’s ping pong, building blocks, and corn hole. Mine love running around and playing with the other kids there. We sometimes bring games to play or small toys to play with as well.


Fr8 Yard
125 East Main Street, Spartanburg

Peak Cafe

This crepe and coffee shop, offers a small playroom for kids to de-energize. While mom and dad sneak in some re-energizing caffeine! Readers tell us Peak is a great place to grab a cup of coffee in Spartanburg.

Peak is a crêpe restaurant with a play area for little ones.


Peak Cafe
8161 Warren H Abernathy HIghway, Spartanburg


The Fuddrucker’s on John B White Sr. Boulevard has a small arcade inside the premises. So, while you wait for your delicious hamburgers to be ready or after you finish your meal, your kids can spend their time playing old fashioned arcade games. Plus, Fuddrucker’s has a great children’s menu that also gives kids a free cookie from their scrumptious bakery with each meal. While the arcade is indoors, the way the seating is arranged does give your kids some freedom to check out the arcade while you keep tabs on them from a nearby table. If the weather is nice, they do have a great outdoor seating area, as well.

1509 John B White Sr Boulevard, Spartanburg

Big Air

We know trampoline parks are great places to have fun for a couple hours or throw a birthday party. But Big Air in Greenville has a hot kitchen inside the facility where you can get pizza, pretzels, drinks, and hot dogs. They also offer a Family Fun package on Thursdays and Sundays where you get four one-hour jump passes, a large pizza, and a pitcher of soda for $55.

Big Air of Spartanburg
660 Spartan Boulevard, Spartanburg

Big Air of Greenville
36 Park Woodruff Drive, Greenville

Places to Eat and Play that are Worth the Drive

These places are a little bit of a drive from Spartanburg, but they are worth it. You’ll find good food and play spaces that will make the kiddos happy!

The Mason Jar

After a hunting down all the “Toads on Trade”, your family can hop into The Mason Jar restaurant to enjoy a burger and fries. Named for the owners Grandchild, this restaurant makes a point to welcome kids.

The Mason Jar downtown Greer. They have a little Lego table with some other toys. Great Burger special on Wednesdays too!


The Mason Jar
202 Trade Street, Greer

Joe’s Crab Shack

Did you know Joe’s Crab Shack has a fenced in playground? While it is not technically in Spartanburg, it is worth the drive to the Pelham Road exit to enjoy great seafood, happy hour, and a patio with an attached playground. While you sit on the patio and enjoy people bringing you food and drinks on a tray, your little ones can safely play in this enclosed area. And, the restaurant menu is excellent for kids with options like Mini Beach Burgers, Rockin’ Popcorn Shrimp, and Kid’s Snow crab.

Joe’s Crab Shack
102 E Beacon Drive, Greenville

Runway Café

Another unique find that the whole family will love is Runway Café at the Greenville Downtown Airport. Again, this one is totally worth the drive! On top of seeing the planes take off and land, Runway Park is an awesome playground. Even better, Runway Café is directly beside the playground. Your kids will have a blast eating their $3.99 children’s meal while watching the planes. And, afterwards, you can let them run off their energy on the playground. I’ve eaten at Runway Café several times and am always happy with my meal. My favorite is the Barnstormer sandwich with pasta salad.

Runway Cafe
21 Airport Rd Ext, Greenville

El Thrifty Social Club

This Mexican inspired cantina has numerous options for keeping the kids occupied. The outdoor seating area overlooks a fenced in greenspace and offers shuffle board, table tennis and more. Inside you’ll find activities like pool and foosball. PLus there is indoor/outdoor seating at the bar, so parents can enjoy drinks like the “Juanita Appleseed” while the kids get out their wiggles.

El Thrifty has great food and tons of family games! Plus, a nice fenced in area so kids can just run around and be kids 😁


El Thrifty Social Club
25 Delano Drive, Greenville

Now that the weather is tolerable, it’s the perfect time to choose a restaurant with outdoor seating and space for your kids to roam.

Are there other kid-friendly places to dine with kids we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments!

About the Author
Jennifer relocated to Spartanburg seven years ago, and now spends her days working from home and taking care of her two kids. She loves this area because we can go from rural areas to urban areas to the mountains within an hour. Her favorite things to do with her kids are using their imaginations and visiting Spartanburg County local libraries. Follow Jennifer at

Leave a Reply

Notify of