Free Activities

Summer Streets Set to Return in August with a Giant Water Slide

Summer Streets is on the horizon, giving New Yorkers three consecutive Saturdays in August of car-free fun to enjoy a seven-mile stretch of city streets from the Upper East Side to the Brooklyn Bridge. Summer Streets arrives with a big splash as last year's main attraction, the three-story water slide, returns to Foley Square in downtown Manhattan.

Surrounding the giant 270-foot water slide will be an urban beach sponsored by Vita Coco. The always-popular zip line—rising 30 feet above the urban landscape and spanning a distance of 165 feet—returns as well. New in 2016 is the addition of Citi as a title-sponsor, as the event is now dubbed Citi Summer Streets. Read on for details on this beloved summer event.

10 Summer Festivals for NYC Kids This August

Many families flee the city in August for end-of-summer vacations, but it's actually one of my favorite months to be in NYC. With summer staples like swimming, play fountains, Governors Island, and hundreds of free summer fun, there's plenty to do if you stick around. Plus, only-in-August favorites like Summer Streets and Arthur Ashe Kids' Day really pack in the fun. So we've rounded up 10 FREE family-friendly festivals happening throughout the Big Apple in August to help you get the most out of NYC with kids during the last month of summer.

Free Things To Do with Philly Kids in August 2016

Summers in Philly are filled with food festivals, swimming, concerts, and family vacations to the shore. But by summer's end, kids are bored and already worried about the start of a new school year. You might be looking to get out of the house and break that cabin fever for a few hours without breaking the bank! We've rounded up some of the best free events around Philly happening in August. To see more upcoming events, check out our event calendar.

So Many Fun Things to Do With Kids in South Windsor

Don't know how to fill long summer days? Head out to South Windsor and you'll likely run out of daylight. Once a tract of land occupied by Podunk Indians, and later a farming and ship building town that supplied volunteers during the American Revolution, today this community boasts vibrant restaurants, recreation areas, shopping plazas, and enough attractions to keep children entertained. Located about 10 miles northeast of Hartford, the town makes for a great in-state day trip

Summer Reading Programs Around Fairfield County

Whether your child is in pre-school or high school, the final works from her teacher were probably instructions about making sure to read over the summer in order to avoid the dreaded summer slide. However, with the movie adaptation of Roald Dahl's beloved The BFG to the long awaited publication of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, this summer books are cool again, and it's a fantastic time to get kids excited reading.  Nearly every public library in Fairfield County has some kind of summer reading program in which children can win prizes. Some of these programs require proof of residency in the form of a library card, but there are a wide variety of programs of available for the community at large in libraries and other locations. We've rounded up other educational programs happening over the summer to fight that summer slide but here are some of our favorites to help keep the kids reading:

Free Admission for Active Duty Military Families with Blue Star Museums

Free museum admission is not just for kids in the summer months. More than 2000 museums across the country have joined the Blue Star initiative, offering free admission to active military personnel and their families* all summer long, from Memorial Day (Monday May 30 through Labor Day (Monday September 5). Spread the word; if you don't have active military in your own family, let your friends know that from the GRAMMY Museum to the Santa Monica Aquarium and a whole slew in between, the men and women who protect all of our families can treat their families this summer.

New 53rd Street Library Opens with Children's Room, Teen Zone

The New York Public Library opened its brand-new 53rd Street branch in late June, offering some great features for families in a busy NYC corridor, including a spacious Children’s Room, Teen Zone, laptop bank, and programming and events for kids of all ages in a modern, subterranean setting. The 53rd Street Library replaces the longstanding Donnell Library that was razed in 2008. A series of setbacks, including the financial crisis of 2008 caused a lengthy delay in the construction of the new library, which sits below a luxury hotel and condo, but we think it might have been worth the wait.

Free, educational, and engaging library activities were indispensable during the early days with my son, so I was excited to check out the new library in Midtown West and learn more about its many offerings. Read on for a little preview of this gorgeous library, and don't forget to check out the trove of book suggestions, for babies to teens, for summer reading from the NYPL before you head in. Our Summer Slide Busters guide has even more library and STEAM-related fun activity ideas for NYC kids.

50 FREE Things Kids Can Do in LA this Summer

Summer's great, isn't it? So much time, so much to do. All the things that can't be squeezed into the cursedly short time between school, homework, and dinner can be enjoyed at leisure, without stress of school night bedtimes. Summer means not a care in the world—except how to pay for all this frivolity, right? 'Cause we sure aren't getting a whole lot of work done! The answer? Summer freebies. Become an expert on how long your kids can get in free to Southland activities. Hit all the free museum days. And then start working your way down this list of totally free things to do with LA kids over the summer!

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