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8 ways to enjoy Atlanta when it’s nasty outside

Tut-tut; it looks a bit nasty out there

Don't let a little nasty weather get you down. Atlanta is brimming with activities to prevent cabin-fever even when the weather outside is frightful.

»RELATED: Severe thunderstorm warning issued for north metro Atlanta

These eight Atlanta-area attractions will have you seeing a rainbow or a bit of sunshine in no time.

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(Courtesy of The Painted Pin)

The Painted Pin. You'll never think of bowling the same way again after a visit to The Painted Pin. Swanky meets excitement when you escape the rain at this upscale playground. Set up a game of bowling, have a drink from the full-service bar, chow down on delicious eats or play a series of old school games like skee ball, bocce ball, hoops and more. It's primarily an "over 21" space, but you can bring the kids on Saturdays and Sundays before 5 p.m.. Indulge in a cocktail while they play free games or navigate the pins with the help of gutter-guards.

Hodgepodge Coffeehouse. Pay no mind to the passing storm while you hide away at Hodgepodge. Wrap your hands around a mug of organic coffee, enjoy the art displays, peruse the book selection or grab the community guitar off the wall and strum a tune. Creatives will enjoy monthly art shows, Open Mic for singers, poets and rappers, a weekly comedy lounge and more. Kids in tow? No problem. A large corner play area, weekly story time and Monday's Art Attack Kids will keep them busy.

Visit a planetarium. Planetarium shows at Fernbank Science Center and Tellus Science Museum are most popular, but did you know there are 16 planetariums and observatories in Georgia! Gray skies don't prevent you from enjoying the fun. See a show about black holes, scary storms or lunar phases in full-dome digital projection. Many planetariums also offer shows for young children, such as a Sesame Street production, so be sure to ask.

Ormsby's. Rainy days call for comfort food. Head over to Ormsby's for hand-dipped corn dogs, chili con carne, Guinness braised brats and kraut or an ultimate BLT with homemade mayo and sunny side up eggs. If lunch is over and the rain is still falling, pass the time with bocce ball or a game of pool. Don't forget a bottle of brew or one of 20 rotating drafts.

Especially for kids 

Young "drivers" learn to respect road signs and other drivers at Tiny Towne in Norcross. Tiny Towne is an entertaining, stimulating and educational experience that introduces children ages 3 and up to real-life driving experiences and helps them steer away from dangerous, reckless driving. (HYOSUB SHIN / AJC/hshin@ajc.com)

Tiny Towne. Kids 3 – 15 appreciate a rainy day when it means the chance to drive. Mixing education with entertainment, kiddos control high-tech mini cars on realistic streets at Tiny Towne. You can also take a train ride, play in the "carcade," or enjoy lunch at The Grill.

Little Shop of Stories. It's a book store for the younger set, but books are only half the story. Enjoy storytime three times each week at Little Shop of Stories, including Thursday evening events with milk and cookies – come in your jammies, too. Sign up for summer camp, the summer reading program or the pen pal package.

Gary Pirkle Park. When the kids need to run and play on a day with drizzle, head to Gary Pirkle Park in Sugar Hill. Children love the giant playground nestled under a 90-foot solar powered shelter. Once the rain clears, take in the walking trails, community garden or get wet again in Richland Creek.

Nov. 17 is the deadline for those who may be selected to be interviewed for a Marietta Fire Department video for new firefighters — people who have been helped by Marietta EMTs. Here a Marietta firefighter guides a preschool tour of the Marietta Fire Museum, which is undergoing renovation. Courtesy of Marietta (For the AJC)

Marietta Fire Museum. Explore two floors of fire trucks and memorabilia dating back to the 1880s at the Marietta Fire Museum. Let the fire team know you are visiting, and they will be happy to show you around (providing there is no firefighting to be done!) Bring a few quarters for the inside ride, and don't leave without getting your parking slip validated so parking is free and not the regular $20 fee.

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