An Easy Solution to Stroller Bans

Can't use a stroller? Wear them!

Cleveland opened a new aquarium and in anticipation of heavy foot traffic, put a temporary ban on the use of strollers.

Some parents lost their minds.

They took to the Greater Cleveland Aquarium’s facebook page and left very disparaging and rude comments about how the aquarium must hate families and clearly these people must not have children. Banning strollers doesn’t mean the aquarium hates families, otherwise they would have said “no kids allowed.” Banning strollers means the aquarium has the safety and comfort of all patrons in mind.

I spent the afternoon yesterday in downtown Indianapolis, where more than a hundred thousand people crowded the streets for the the largest block party in the Nation in anticipation of the Super Bowl. I was rammed in the ankle by two strollers and tripped by one. I am very mindful of strollers as I know how much of a pain it can be to be out in public with one. However, the number of strollers downtown yesterday in such a crowded location was too much. And I can only imagine the overstimulation those babies went through with the freezing wind, being shoved through a sea of legs, and all the noise.

While I won’t get into the finer rules of stroller etiquette, there are situations where strollers should not be allowed and I believe the opening weeks of a new aquarium is one of them. To anyone who wants to argue that their baby can’t walk? I say: wear them and wear them proud.

Most baby carriers can accommodate a child up to 3o pounds, sometimes more. You can wear them in a variety of ways: they can sleep, rest, relax, see everything that you see, and are comforted by your close presence. I’m certainly no bossy babywearing fanatic, but I do wholeheartedly believe in babywearing for a number of different reasons, mobility being one of them. I wear my baby in the grocery store if I just have to run in for a few things; using a whole cart so I can push my baby around to get milk would be silly. We wear the baby at the mall, too: strollers in crowded malls become sneaky booby traps of inconvenience.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my stroller, but it’s not a crutch for me as it seems to be with so many parents. Sure you need to be able to carry stuff, but do you really need *that* much stuff? If you have a young walking child, chances are you’ll have to keep your visit a short anyway — that’s what family passes to museums are for. Little kids do better when big things are seen little by little. Aquariums are no exception (especially one in Cleveland, it’s not like it’s the ocean.) If you do require your stroller for whatever reason, you’ll just have to wait until the stroller ban lifts. The good news is when the stroller ban lifts the crowds have died down which means more museum real estate for you and your hot wheels.

How do you feel about temporary bans on strollers?

Find more Casey on her blog, twitter and facebook.

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