We’ve updated our Budget Friendly Summer Activities list, just in time for summer!
The heat is blazing and the end of school countdowns are ticking away. While this season is notorious for lazy days, ice cream cones and cannonballs into the pool, it’s often met with parental hesitation in fear of constantly hearing the infamous “I’m bored” declarations from their tiny humans. So here we go, mamas! In an effort to keep the kiddos happy and you smiling, OMB has sought out some Budget Friendly Orlando Summer Activities, free or minimal fee, and compiled them for you in one go-to boredom buster list!
Arts & Cinema
- Regal Cinemas $1 Movies – Throughout the summer, Regal Cinemas hosts the Summer Movie Express where $1 kid movies are every Tuesday and Wednesday morning through the summer at participating theatres.
- Popcorn Flicks – The City of Winter Park and The Enzian have teamed up to host an outdoor movie night on the second Thursday of each month on Park Ave’s Central Park. This event is free to the public and sure to be a hit, especially with several ice cream shops just across the street!
- Museums On Us Weekends – If you are a Bank of America or Merrill Lynch card holder, then you have free access to certain museums on the first weekend of each month! Click here to find the museums closest to you.
- Uptown Concert Series – The city of Altamonte Springs hosts a free concert in Cranes Roost Park. Bring a picnic or purchase from the food and drink vendors available. (day may vary, check their calendar!)
- Fort Wilderness Campground Cinema & S’Mores Sign-A-Long – Enjoy a unique night of free camp themed fun filled with songs, a movie, and a meet-and-greet with Chip and Dale all in the fantastic campsite of Disney’s Fort Wilderness.
- Saturday Serenade at East End Market – Every first and third Saturday from 2p.m. – 5p.m. East End market hosts a concert with multiple bands in their beautiful courtyard. Grab some tasty treats or a book to read from the shops inside, and enjoy a relaxing, musical afternoon.
Recreation & Festivals
- Parks & Nature Trails – Florida is a beautiful state! So get out and explore it’s natural beauty in one of the many nature trails and parks! It’s the best free fun around!
- Natural Springs – Natural springs usually provide you with the chance to do some nature walking and then cool down in the gorgeous spring water. The Florida Springs site provides you with the location of each spring in Florida and very detailed information about each one. Or, read what some of our contributors have to say about De Leon Springs State Park and Blue Spring State Park.
- Farmer’s Markets – If you’re looking for a fun weekend outing for your family, visit one of the many farmers markets we have here in Central Florida! There are several to choose from and at least one happening every day of the week. My personal favorite is the “cheese guy” (you’ll thank me later), and the kettle corn. You’re sure to enjoy the community, healthy foods, and some of the most interesting individuals in the area.
- Orlando(Lake Eola) Farmer’s Market – Sunday
- Celebration Farmer’s Market – Sunday
- Mount Dora Farmer’s Market – Sunday
- Maitland Farmer’s Market – Sunday
- Audubon Park Community Market – Monday
- Kissimmee Valley Farmer’s Market – Tuesday
- Artisan Alley Farmer’s Market – Thursday
- Windermere Farmer’s Market – Friday
- Casselberry Farmer’s Market – Saturday
- Winter Park Farmer’s Market – Saturday
- Winter Garden Farmer’s Market – Saturday
- Lake Mary Farmer’s Market – Saturday
- Sanford Farmer’s Market – Saturday
Crafts & Educational Fun
- Mommy & Me Classes – OMB has an excellent compilation of local Mommy & Me classes that are an excellent opportunity to meet new moms and allow for healthy social and educational development for little ones.
- Hardware Store Kid Clinics – Check out your local Lowe’s for their Build & Grow Kid’s Clinic or Home Depot for their Kid’s Workshop. Each event is held once a month a designated Saturday and is free.
- Michaels Kids Club – For just $2 a child, creative minds can make something new and exciting by attending one of the Michaels Kids Club craft workshops. These classes are geared for children ages 3 and up, and be sure to check their website for dates and times at the location nearest you.
- Joann’s Classes – From sewing to tie-dye to cake decorating, Joann’s offers a variety of classes at multiple times throughout the summer with prices ranging from $5 – $45 depending on what skill you would like to learn. Each location has their own Kid’s Classes, so be sure to check with the location nearest you.
- Lakeshore Kids Crafts – Each Saturday kids ages 3 & up are invited to come and complete a special craft anytime between 11a.m. – 3p.m. at all Lakeshore Learning stores.
- Lego Mini Monthly Build – On the first Tuesday of each month, the Lego store hosts a Lego Mini Monthly Build where each child is taught how to build a mini model and gets to take it home free of charge! This event is open for children ages 6 – 14 only.
- The Crayola Experience – Discover the magic of color at the Crayola Experience in The Florida Mall. When you’re here, you’re always encouraged to let your creativity run free, to color outside the lines, and to play, explore, and learn. The Crayola Experience features 25 one-of-a-kind attractions, our very own Café Crayola, and the Crayola Store with a large selection of colorful souvenirs. Enjoy a day of family fun and see how colors, chemistry, and digital technology can create an exciting adventure of colorful memories. Be sure to check their calendar and events page to see what’s happening today!
- Vacation Bible Schools – Week-long summer activities that are usually free to attendees held at various churches around Central Florida that generally involve music, moral/religious lessons, crafts and snacks all revolving around a specific theme. Click here to find one happening in your area.
Be sure to check and double check times and locations. We’d hate for you to make the trek with your family, only to have an event cancelled.
Know of something free (or almost free!) and fun that you don’t see on the list? We’d love to hear about your budget-friendly summer activities in the comment section below!
2015 Budget Friendly Summer Activities by Lisa Curzon.
Updated 5/29/16 by Orlando Moms Blog
6/15/17 by Orlando Moms Blog
7/16/18 by Orlando Moms Blog
6/13/19 by Orlando Moms Blog