Summer is expensive. A weekend trip out of town can easily break the bank, leaving less room in the budget for the fun things to explore in the city. Summer camps can leave you feeling drained, causing you to look for inexpensive and free things to do in Edmonton with kids.
Don’t worry, there’s lots to do in Edmonton, for free, through the summer. We’ve got you covered. Try out some of these activities to have cheap fun in Edmonton.
1. Play at one of the top Spray Parks in Edmonton
2. Cool off and wade at the Legislature grounds. Bonus points if you run through the colored fountains at dusk.
3. Watch the K Days Parade, and get some free pancakes.
4. Scale the biggest slide in the city and cool off at Remax Spray Park and playground in Sherwood Park (pictured above!)
5. Get entertained by the Street Performers at Churchill Square while the kids play in the kids area at the festival
6. Take in an outdoor movie during Movies on the Square, or find scheduled ones on our events calendar
7. Park near Sheriff Robertson Park (111 Ave and 81 St) and take a walk through the Kinnaird Ravine. Look at the murals, and climb on rocks that look like ‘hoodoos’.
8. Enjoy a pancake breakfast for free to kick of K-days
9. Check out the Art Gallery of Alberta. You can get free admission on the last Thursday of the month from 6-9
10. Get entertained, eat, and browse for new home inspiration at one of the Show Home openings in Edmonton (to stay up to date on these fun, and free, events – follow our Events Calendar)
11. Take a walk through Mactaggart Sanctuary
12. Take part in a ‘Playground Hop’ and visit the top ten playgrounds in Edmonton
13. Bicycle through Borden Park and have a look at the sculptures and play at one of our favorite playgrounds in the city
14. Get free admission (for kids) to the Saturday Movie at Metro Cinemas
15. Enjoy Free entertainment at the Fringe Festival
16. Get a Free Lego mini build set from the Lego Store
17. Downtown Walking tours are free and available all summer long
18. Browse through Chapters and discover a new children’s book author
19. Take a free Dance class from Ivivva (Sunday mornings, in-store)
20. Join the free computer camps at the Apple Store and Microsoft stores, through the summer (pre-registration required)
21. Play two free bowling games every single day over the summer
22. Take part in the Bonnie Doon Kids Club (toddlers, little kids) on the third Thursday of the month
23. Get out of town – Bring your tubes and float down Whitecourt’s Rotary Park for an easy way to cool off (that’s free!)
24. Watch a Dragon boat race at the Dragon Boat Festival
25. Drop into your local community association and buy a membership and get free swimming at the local pool (through select memberships, at weekly intervals)
26. Get on the bikes and try a new course at the Strathcona County Bike Skills Park
27. Head over to the University of Alberta Observatory to learn more about the stars
28. Check out the Zipline at the new Dino Park in Leduc (The grand opening is on July 25)
29. Check out the Green Shack programs at a local park – Our favorite is Kinsmen, where there are staff all day to entertain the kids and encourage them to get out and play. Find the full city Green Shack program list, here
30. Head over to the Farmer’s Market at Callingwood for Kids Event days with free bouncy castles and petting zoos to entertain the kids
31. Or, join the Sprouts Kids Club at the Southwest Edmonton Farmer’s Market for free kids fun (and credit to the Farmer’s Market).
32. Take the kids to the monthly workshop at the Home Depot and build something to bring home (activities are themed monthly)
33. Listen to the free Disney Fantasia in the Square, by the Winspear Center
34. Get cultured at the Works Art + Design Festival
35. Visit the St. Albert Botanical Park
36. Follow our event calendar for FREE outdoor movie locations and showings, throughout the city
37. Get introduced to Caribbean Culture at Cariwest
38. Take a free Light Saber Training class (there are kids sessions and adult sessions)
39. Take part in Family Nature Nights in Edmonton, two hour long events in July and August where families can come out, learn something new and have fun.
40. Go on a sustainable walking tour offered through the University of Alberta
41. Make a temporary tattoo stand. Grab some tattoos, set up like a lemonade stand and offer a little bit of summer to passerbys with a free tattoo
42. Take one of the drop-in classes at Michaels. Classes are free, and there are fun things like bracelet making and tye-dye – Even the paid classes are very cheap, $12/3 classes all summer long.
43. Find a makeshift swing on a trail in the River Valley
44. Catch the view at one of the best places to watch the Sunset in Edmonton
45. Take part in the festivities at Edmonton River Day, or other festivals throughout the city. All festivals have many free events for children and families to take part in. Bring your lunch, and have some fun.
46. Take part in an epic water fight. There’s the ‘biggest waterfight’ being planned for the summer – and we will let you know when more details come available.
47. Check out your local Parent Link organization, from free playdates at the park, to ice cream parties and even toy lending libraries – you’ll find many free activities for the kids to take part in.
48. Fly a Kite on a Windy Day at Hawerlawk Park
49. Go to the Edmonton Air Show (kids under 6 are free)
50. Scope out the sand sculptures at Sand on Whyte (extended until July 17)
51. Catch frogs in the marsh at the Sherwood Park Natural Area
52. Plan a road trip to go kid friendly tubing at Red Deer Discovery Canyon – bring your own tube, it’s free.
53. Host a movie night in your own backyard. Find a friend with a projector, hang a sheet for the screen and watch movies as the sun goes down.
54. Explore one of these best trails and places to ride bikes, with kids, in Edmonton and area
55. Use our Guide to Geocaching and get out there and go on your own treasure hunt this summer, with the kids.
56. St. Albert kids can take part in daily programming at local parks, with the Cruisin’ Clubhouse
57. Take part in a Saturday morning Physical Activity class for kids, it’s a great way to get active and tire out the kids bright and early
58. Run through the colored rainbow of balls and structures at the Meadows Splash Pad, outside of the Meadows Rec Centre
59. Take your tubes and plan an afternoon spent on the river – at Range Road 23 Park
60. Test the Zipline at one of our newest favourite playground discoveries
61. Catch an outdoor movie, watch The Good Dinosaur outside at Jurassic Forest
62. Check out the FREE kids golf course at Stony Plain Golf Course
63. Check out a local Fire Station open House
64. Attend one of the many free programs to attend at the Edmonton Public Library and while you’re there, sign up for the free summer reading club
65. Ride on the Zipline and climb the fun structure at Florence Hallock School Playground
Want to get up to date on what to do this summer (free, and awesome) activities and experiences with kids? Make sure that you’re signed up for our weekly newsletter – right here.