Summer Activities for Kids You WON’T Want to Miss Out On

Ahhh...summer. If you’re a mama of littles, you’ve likely been counting down to its arrival. Whether you’re a stay-at-home mama or you work outside the home, there’s a certain appeal to a slowed-down pace, warmer weather, pool days, and maybe even a summer vacation. But if your house is anything like mine, your kiddos have already initiated World War 3 against each other on day 2 of summer break. If you’re looking to reclaim your dreams of summer magic, look no further! Bookmark this summer bucket list to keep your little ones busy all summer long!

Family Playing in Sandbox at the Park

Summer Classics:

• Catch fireflies

• Host a lemonade stand

• Camp in your backyard (or a nearby campground!)

• Have a water water balloon fight!

• Run through the sprinklers

• Make your own popsicles – all you need is fruit juice, popsicle sticks, and an ice cube tray! For larger popsicles, try this tray!

• Make your own ice cream! Literally all you need is a few ingredients!

• Outdoor art – chalk your sidewalk with sidewalk chalk or homemade spray chalk!

Kids Eating Homemade Popsicles Outside on Beach Chairs

Get Out of the House – For Nearly Nothing:

• Check out free/cheap classes at local stores. Stores like Michael’s, Lowe’s, and Home Depot offer weekly kids’ classes or workshops – either free or pay just the cost of materials! Check your local stores for class and registration details.

• Attend kids’ storytime! Check your local library’s event schedule for summer kids’ events! Independent bookstores will often host summer storytimes as well – check with your favorite local shopkeepers!

• Try a summer park hop – visit each of your favorite playgrounds and spraygrounds (and check out a new one or two!). Summer is the perfect time to drive a bit further for a park or splash pad – pack sunscreen and a picnic lunch and you’ll be glad you did!

• Summer outdoor movies and concert series – our metropolitan area (along with many of its suburbs!) host monthly outdoor movies and concerts each summer. Does yours?!

• Harkins Summer Movie Fun – Is there a Harkins theater in your hometown? They offer weekly kid’s movies for just $1-$2 per person – all summer long! No Harkins in your city? Check with your local theaters to see if they offer a similar program!

• Visit a local lake or swimming hole – you may have to pay for parking, but swimming is a fun AND affordable way to stay cool this summer!

• See a drive-in movie! No drive-in theater in your city? Host an outdoor movie in your backyard!

Family Enjoying Outdoor Movie on the Beach Eating Popcorn 

Summer Activities – with a Cost:

• Local Museums, Children’s Museums, and Historical Museums

• Local Zoo

• Community Pools and Waterparks

• Major League or Minor League Sporting events

• Trampoline Parks

• Arcades

• Local Festival, Carnival, or County Fair

Family Walking Around Zoo 

This list should get you started off with a summer to remember! There are SO many things to do that don’t involve much of a cost. You might even consider buying a membership or summer pass to summer activities that DO cost money – or asking for this for one of your children’s summer birthday gifts! Most museums and zoos offer family memberships that pay for themselves in just a few visits. Our local arcade, Main Event, also offers a summer fun pass that includes all the bowling, laser tag, and high ropes you can play all summer long! Depending on the age of your kids and how much you think your family would use a membership to a local venue, it might be well worth the investment! Our family has a zoo membership, so I don’t feel bad about it if we only go for an hour and leave!


Girl Kneeling in Water Under Sprinklers at Splash Pad

Happy summer, mamas!! What is YOUR favorite summer activity to do with your kiddos?!

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