50 things to do this summer under $5 - MetroFamily Magazine
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50 things to do this summer under $5

Summer Thursdays, Oklahoma Hall of Fame

Reading Time: 5 minutes 

Summer is a glorious season when kids are out of school and families get to spend lots of extra time together. As many parents know too well, entertaining little ones can get expensive. We’ve got you covered with this list of 50 exciting summer ideas all under $5. Most of these events and activities are actually totally free! Oklahoma City offers plenty of frugal fun, so be sure to take advantage of these incredibly inexpensive programs and activities.

Editor’s note: This list is updated throughout the season, so please check back for updates. 

  1. Step outside and check out some public art. These must-see murals are scattered throughout town and don’t cost a dime to visit.
  2. Visit a historic one-room schoolhouse. Many of the ones on our list offer free admission.
  3. Spend even more time exploring nature during Wild-ones Wildlife Walks at Martin Park Nature Center, held monthly on the third Saturday.
  4. Express your creative side at FREE Arts in the Park, free visual art classes taught by professional teaching artists at OKC Parks recreation centers. Classes are held Tuesday-Thursday through July 27.
  5. Taking the whole family out for a restaurant meal can be expensive. Pack up your regular homemade lunch and take it on a picnic to instantly upgrade your mealtime for free. Our list of top picnic spots in the metro should provide you with an ideal location.
  6. Catch a flick at Military Park. Asian District Cultural Association of Oklahoma City invite families to enjoy FREE outdoor movies including Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Everything Everywhere All At Once. July 22 & Aug. 5, 9-11 p.m.
  7. FREE Summer Thursdays are back at the Oklahoma Hall of Fame. Enjoy free family fun including themed storytimes, arts & crafts, outdoor games and more. Activities start at 10 a.m. every Thursday in June and July.
  8. Travel the world via a FREE Dance Passport. Local dance instructors will lead free cultural dance classes. Saturdays July 29 and Aug. 5 & 12 will be focused on Fancy War Dance.
  9. Host a backyard camp-out play date, without all the fuss! While your at it, try out these tasty and fun yummy mummy dogs.
  10. Learn to pick a tune with Lucas Ross at the American Banjo Museum.
  11. Take part in a family-friendly block party in the Historic Capitol Hill District. FREE Fiesta Fridays features pop-up shops, live entertainment and more on the third Friday of June, July and August.
  12. Tour the town on the new streetcars! Day passes are just $3. Enjoy free fares on the third Friday of August & September and on Labor Day.
  13. Take a stroll in OKC’s new Scissortail Park and check out the unique play equipment and water features. Or try out another free splash pad on this handy list.
  14. Outdoor summer movies & concerts are offered totally free at many local parks. Spend a few bucks on concessions and you have a killer summer outing!
  15. Listen to an audiobook or podcast. Here’s a handy list of popular kid-friendly podcasts.
  16. Grab your phone and hit a local park for a family photo session. Capture silly memories together and share them with your family and friends.
  17. Make an obstacle course in your backyard.
  18. Embrace the great outdoors by heading to one of these top spots for exploring nature in OKC.
  19. Have a water fight without the mess! Try out these DIY sponge bombs.
  20. Go fishing! The Oklahoma City metro has several close-to-home fishing options and City of Oklahoma City offers FREE fishing on the first Saturday of each month. Edmond & Moore are hosting FREE fishing derbies for young anglers.
  21. Paint with vegetables and fruits. Simply cut, dip and paint to see what kinds of patterns you can create. Find more crafts with unexpected materials at metrofamilymagazine.com/bypass-the-brush.
  22. Get some fresh air and exercise together on a bike ride. There are plenty of scenic trails to discover together.
  23. Meet local professionals from a variety of fields, explore exhibits and more at the FREE Career Night at the Museum at the Oklahoma History Center. July 27, 4-6 p.m. 
  24. Level up with Edmond Park’s FREE Movie Night @ the Park. Enjoy pre-movie activities and then watch Super Mario Bros. at the amphitheater. July 28
  25. Beat the heat with a movie night. On Tuesdays, Harkins Theatre in Bricktown brings classic films back to the big screen. Tickets are $5 and the movies begin at 7 p.m.
  26. Go geocaching.
  27. Enjoy an urban adventure at a local futsal, basketball, bocce ball or bike park.
  28. Stir up summer science fun with a variety of simple experiments
  29. Transform into a territorial Oklahoma kid! Find out what life was like when Oklahoma City was getting established in the 1890s with these fun activities.
  30. Hit up Sonic’s Happy Hour or any of the other special meal discounts on our Restaurant Family Discount page for cheap refreshments.
  31. Make your own masterpiece with shaving cream! This fun activity makes everyone feel like an accomplished artist, kids and adults alike.
  32. De-Clutter your house and sell your no-longer-needed stuff at a local consignment sale or resale shop. Make it a family project and use the cash to do something fun together!
  33. Play a round at a local disc golf course.
  34. Plan your mission to space in preparation for the Oklahoma History Center’s From Launch to Landing: Oklahomans in Space exhibit, on display now.
  35. Explore downtown on a Full Moon Bike Ride and Run at Myriad Gardens (301 W Reno Ave). The next ride is planned for Aug. 1 and will celebrate the Sturgeon Moon. $5 suggested donation. All ages are welcome.
  36. Become a citizen scientist by creating your own mammal feeder!
  37. Rent a movie, make this festive popcorn and enjoy a night in!
  38. Try a new playground! There’s no better way to entertain the kids than to take them to a new open-air play place. These 10 are totally free and recommended by our readers.
  39. Celebrate the end of summer at the Chisholm Creek Fam Jam, a family-friendly party with a DJ, petting zoo, bounce houses, vendors and a Nouveau Makers Market featuring local student artists. Aug. 5, 5:30-8:30 p.m. 
  40. Banana Fro-Yo is a cheap snack that will hugely upgrade a banana bundle. Use on-hand ingredients to make this stellar summer snack.
  41. Communities in the metro host exciting events filled with live music, local food and activities for guests of all ages. Grab your family and take part in thrilling street festivals in your community.
  42. Take Mom on a hike with Edmond Parks. The free monthly, mom-guided hike encourages families to go outdoors. Aug. 7
  43. Explore Full Circle Bookstore (1900 NW Expy) with the whole family. The shop has an extensive children’s area and regular events like live music and story times that are offered at no charge. Or hit up a local story time near you!
  44. Use grass, leaves, sticks and a bit of yarn to create your own natural paintbrushes with this #AtHomeArt project.
  45. Witness one of the year’s most spectacular and vibrant meteor displays during the FREE Perseid Meteor Shower Viewing at Martin Park Nature Center. Park staff will provide telescopes for optimal viewing. Aug. 12, 8-9:30 p.m.
  46. Create a nature scavenger hunt in your backyard.
  47. Enjoy a day trip to the Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge in Lawton. Get tips for your visit here. 
  48. See Oklahoma’s only mummy at the Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art. Get free admission in June, July and August!
  49. Celebrate the Mother Road at the FREE Rock the Route concert in Yukon on Aug. 31. from 6-11 p.m. There will also be food trucks and fun activities.
  50. Watch Jaws water-side at RIVERSPORT OKC. Sept. 16, 8 p.m. 

Looking for even more summertime fun? Check out our long list of summer resources. For more financially focused resources, visit our collection of family finance articles that include expert guidance to frugal family fun ideas. 

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