First up, I allow you choose the activity you want.
Hundreds of dollars later, I realize this is a mistake and try a free activity like Geocaching.
After realizing that some people hide their "cache" in old fashioned film canisters, hanging in pine trees that are impossible to climb into, we resort to different activities that cost a little but not hundreds of dollars.
The right mix of activities includes bringing cousins along because the weight of constant engagement and sometimes forced, "Isn't this fun?!" lifts significantly. Which is how we found ourselves in the Museum of Natural Curiosities.
Special thanks to Alyssa Taylor who works at Thanksgiving Point, giving her family free access to most of the attractions.
I discovered that this one is a runner. More than once (exactly twice) I panicked and started calling out to my 3 year old nephew. After a minute or two, he sauntered back over to me without a care in the world.
Also discovered with all the wonder-inducing marvels in the museum, 3 year olds love the corner with the pretend garden and stuffed, toy vegetables they feed into a cut out of a rabbit's mouth. The rabbit says, "That's yummy!"
I'd do it all over again in a New York minute.