School's out and summer is here. Time to find some great new ways to keep the kids busy and entertained over break without breaking the bank. We've compiled a HUGE list full of free events and anytime activity ideas for you to keep those kiddos busy all summer long. For more great events, check out our full event calendar.
Children's Night Out—Lansdale
Children can enjoy a special night created just for them. Performers take the stage to provide entertainment such as theater, music, and magic to little ones. This is a repeating event. Check the calendar for more dates
Summer Movie Series—Blue Bell
Outdoor movies at Wentz Run Park are sure to delight crowds this summer. All of the featured films begin at dusk, or when it is dark enough to see the screen. Bring a blanket or camping chair and come early to get a good spot.
Summer Festival Concerts in Rose Tree Park—Upper Providence
Bring blankets and some chairs to enjoy a spectacular line up of performances this summer. Concessions are sold at all concerts or guests may bring their own tasty provisions. Please remember that alcoholic beverages are prohibited throughout the park.
Summer Breeze Concert Series—North Wales
Upper Gwynedd Township presents its "Summer Breeze" Concert Series held on Wednesdays throughout the summer.
Thompson Performing Arts Series—Doylestown
Thompson Performing Arts Series is ready for another great summer. Performances begin at 7 PM unless otherwise noted. The rain location for concerts is Lenape Middle School.
Teen Summer Volunteer Days—Gladwyne
Teens in middle school, high school and college can help the environment and learn about working at a nature center this summer. Volunteers can expect to work on Riverbend's 30-acre property doing activities such as planting, weeding, mulching, clearing trails, feeding the animals, and hanging out with other like-minded teens.
Summer Concert Series at Narberth Playground—Narberth
Audiences can look forward to a different featured performer every Wednesday at the Narberth Playground. Guests can bring a picnic dinner and lawn chairs or blankets to enjoy the show.
Boating on the Schuylkill—Philadelphia
Families can explore this quiet stretch of the Schuylkill River by using Bartram Garden's kayaks or rowboats. No registration or boating experience is necessary to participate and all ages are welcome. Minors must be accompanied by an adult. Boats, life jackets, and basic instruction are provided.
Summer Concert Series—Montgomeryville
From June through August, visitors to the Community & Recreation Center in Montgomeryville can enjoy free concerts on Thursday evenings. If the weather is good, concerts are held on the outside stage. If the weather is questionable, concerts are moved indoors.
Grays Ferry Crescent Movies—Philadelphia
Grab a blanket and pack a picnic to enjoy watching movies under the stars. Movies begin between 7:45 PM and 8:30 PM depending on the film. Free snacks and beverages are available as well.
Movie Night in the Piazza at Schmidt's Commons—Philadelphia
Bring your own chair (BYOC) or blanket and enjoy a different movie each evening on the jumbotron.
West Chester Craft Friday Mornings—West Chester
Stop by Monkey Fish Toys for make and take craft time. Little ones can create a special project to take home.
Wine Concert at the Market at DelVal—Doylestown
Every Friday from May 5 through September 1, families are invited to The Market at DelVal to enjoy a live concert performed by local artists. Adults can enjoy wine-tasting while kiddos can bounce in the inflatable attractions and enjoy ice cream from DelVal Creamery.
Mason Mill Park Summer Concert Series—Huntingdon Valley
Throughout the summer, Upper Moreland Township sponsors a variety of summer concerts. These free summer concerts begin at 6:30 PM, weather permitting. It is suggested that visitors carpool for parking purposes. Bring a lawn chair or blanket and get ready for the live music to start!
Norristown Free Outdoor Concert Series—Norristown
Enjoy a free summer concert at Elmwood Park.
Concerts Under the Stars—King of Prussia
Upper Merion Township presents its 32nd Annual Concerts Under The Stars series. This free concert series is held on Sunday evenings beginning at 6 PM on the Township Building Park lawn. Guests are asked to bring lawn chairs and blankets as well as picnic baskets.
Movies in the Park—Lafayette Hill
Throughout the summer, a variety of movies are shown on the upper field at Miles Park beginning at dusk. Light refreshments are available for purchase. Families are encouraged to bring a blanket or lawn chair as well as bug spray. Be sure to call the Parks and Recreation hotline in the event of inclement weather.
Family Movie Night—Aston
The Aston Township Parks & Recreation Committee sponsors Family Movie Night which is held at the Community Center. Family Movie Nights are free. Food and drinks are available for purchase. The movies are set to begin at dusk.
Screening Under the Stars—Philadelphia
Every Thursday, from July 6 through August 31, Great Plaza at Penn's Landing hosts a free movie screening. The movies begin at 8:30 PM.
Shady Brook Farms Wine Concert—Yardley
Guests to Shady Brook Farms can expect live music by local bands, wine tasting by Rose Bank Winery, food, and fun for the kiddos during its Summer Wine Concert Series.
Summer Concert Series at Oxford Park—North Wales
Throughout the summer, Lower Gwynedd Township hosts free concerts at Oxford Park.
Swingin' Summer Thursdays—West Chester
Families can enjoy a series of four great downtown festival events on Gay Street. Hear live music, eat great food, watch clowns and dancers, as well as see a student performance showcased at Taylor's Music Store.
Cinema Under the Stars—Upper Gwynedd
Pack your blankets and head to Upper Gwynedd for monthly free movies under the stars, beginning at dusk- weather permitting.
Walnut Street Bridge Movies—Philadelphia
Grab a blanket and pack a picnic to enjoy watching movies under the stars. Movies begin between 7:45 PM and 8:30 PM depending on the film. Please check the ratings of movies in advance as not all of them are suitable for all children. If weather is questionable, be sure to check Facebook for cancelations.
Live Jazz Fridays—Philadelphia
Head over to Cedar Park, pack a picnic, and take in some amazing tunes every Friday from 6 - 8 PM at Cedar Park
40th Street Summer Series—Philadelphia
On select Saturdays, head to the green space behind the Walnut Street Library at 40th and Walnut for their annual summer series. Expect activities, free giveaways, and performances beginning at 6 PM.
Colonial Kids' Quest Puppet Show—Philadelphia
Children can delight in this puppet show depicting the light-hearted adventure in which animal puppets search for a missing copy of the Declaration of Independence. Guests can expect to meet Freedom, a runaway dog, Francois the Frog, Graciela the Goose, Nibbles the Mouse, and Broadside the Cat. Each day, there are two sessions: 11:30 AM and 1 PM.
Smooth Jazz Summer Nights—Philadelphia
Great Plaza at Penn's Landing hosts Smooth Jazz Summer Nights Series this summer. Guests can enjoy performances every Friday in August.
Saturday Night at the Movies—Philadelphia
Franklin Square hosts free outdoor movies throughout the summer. Be sure to pack a blanket or chair to view the featured movie on a big outdoor screen. Pre-show activities begin at 7 PM and the movie starts at 9 PM.
Home Depot Kids Workshop—Various
Home Depot Kids Workshop offers children ages 5-12 a 'hands-on' opportunity to build something themselves. After kids build their craft, they get a certificate of achievement, a Workshop apron, and a commemorative pin, while supplies last.
Public Archaeology Program—Glen Mills
Meet in front of the mill to participate in this free, public archeology program. Volunteers are invited to help professional archeologists as they excavate the site and screen artifacts. No registration is required for this event.
June 11, 2017
The largest African-American street festival, Odunde celebrates the coming of another year for African-Americans and Africanized people around the world. Expect a colorful procession where an offering of fruit and flowers is made to Oshun, the Yoruba goddess of the river, and enjoy an authentic African marketplace featuring vendors from around the world selling merchandise from many African nations, the Caribbean and Brazil. The event takes place across 12 city blocks.
June 16, 2017
The nighttime sky is set aglow with the help of the little bug we lovingly call the firefly. Join Peace Valley Nature Center to celebrate this lively bug and learn about its habits and habitats. There is no fee to participate; however, pre-registration is required.
Ambler Arts & Music Festival—Ambler
Peruse arts such as photography, ceramics, jewelry, and face painting. In addition, enjoy music on stage in the Cavalier Drive Parking Lot, delicious food and a beer garden.
June 17, 2017
The Annual Juneteenth Festival Celebration commemorates the passage and ratification of the 13th Amendment that ended slavery in the United States. This free festival is hosted by the Johnson House Historic Site and includes exhibits, performing arts, discussions, and family-friendly activities speaking about the history of the anti-slavery and abolitionist movements.
Solstice Music Festival—Philadelphia
Welcome the season of summer at Gorgas Park's Solstice Festival. Carnival games, arts and crafts, food vendors, live music, and more await visitors.
June 23, 2017
Lightning in a Jar—Green Lane
Gather at the Tennis Courts and prepare to explore the magical lives of fireflies. Be sure to bring a non-breakable container.
June 24, 2017
Manayunk Arts Festival— Manayunk
This rain-or-shine event is an annual tradition in Manayunk. Visitors can expect to see a variety of artists and exhibitors featuring jewelry, glass, ceramics, mixed media, paintings, photography, wood, and sculptures. It is strongly suggested to take public transportation to the festival. The festival runs through June 25th.
Blueberry Bash—Robbinsville, NJ
Head to New Jersey for some blueberry fun at the Oasis Family Farm. This family-friendly festival features children's activities, lots of blueberries, and more. Kids can enjoy wagon rides, sand art, craft projects, a pie-eating contest, and many other activities. Afterward, take home farm-fresh blueberries, blueberry pies, blueberry ice cream, and other blueberry goodies. Festival continues June 25.
June 25, 2017
Vintage Baseball— Schwenksville
The Athletic Base Ball Club of Philadelphia plays 1864 era base ball for all to enjoy. Enthusiastic ladies and gentlemen are invited to cheer the teams. Kids enjoy playing "Town Ball," a fun activity that was the precursor to baseball.
June 29, 2017
Free Admission to National Constitution Center—Philadelphia
As part of 4th of July activities, enjoy free admission at the National Constitution Center. Guests can expect activities such as Freedom Rising presentation, Signers’ Hall, the new feature exhibition “American Spirits,” and a display sharing Wawa's history in the Philly area.
Wawa Hoagie Day—Philadelphia
Head to Independence Mall from noon - 2 PM for the annual Wawa Hoagie Day. This event focuses on honoring our troops. Local and national heroes such as the military, firemen, and police officers are saluted. Then, Wawa hoagies are distributed free to the crowd.
Go 4th and Learn about Music and Culture— Philadelphia
Visit the Mummers Museum to learn about the history and art of this special tradition. Free tours, instrument demonstrations, and mask making are available. Arrive early to enjoy a free book reading. There are a limited number of free books available for children who attend.
Summer Mummers Concert—Philadelphia
Get ready to strut with the first-place String Band from the 2017 SugarHouse Casino Mummers Parade– Quaker City. Guests can enjoy a free concert, great entertainment, food trucks, and a beer garden under the stars.
June 30, 2017
Free Admission to Penn Museum—Philadelphia
Learn about ancient cultures, see an ancient Egyptian palace, a 15-ton sphinx, mummies, and ancient Maya stone monuments as well as participate in hands-on activity stations. This opportunity is courtesy of Wawa and part of the Wawa Welcome America festivities.
Philadelphia Orchestra Free Concert—Philadelphia
The Philadelphia Orchestra offers this free neighborhood concert to be held at the Great Plaza at Penn's Landing. Guests can enjoy listening to the sweet sounds of string, percussion, and wind instruments followed by a fireworks show.
Free Admission to the Eastern State Penitentiary—Philadelphia
Explore America's most historic prison at dusk for free as part of the Wawa Welcome America! celebration.
July 1, 2017
Free Admission to the African American Museum—Philadelphia
As part of the Wawa Welcome America! celebration, visitors can enjoy the African American Museum in Philadelphia for free.
Pershing's Own Concert and Fireworks—Philadelphia
Visitors to the Great Plaza at Penn's Landing can enjoy a performance by The United States Army Band, one of the nation’s premier musical organizations. After the entertaining and moving patriotic music is played, guests can enjoy a magnificent firework display at 9:30 PM.
Freedom Fest- Concert and Fireworks—Nottingham
Freedom Fest provides family fun to celebrate our Nation's birthday. It is suggested that guests arrive early as well as bring blankets and lawn chairs along. The event is free, but parking is $10.
Ridley Park Fireworks—Ridley Park
Celebrate the 4th of July with a fireworks display at Ridley Park Lake. Be sure to bring a blanket or chair to relax.
July 2, 2017
Red, White, and Blue BBQ Bash—Lahaska
Visitors to Peddler's Village can enjoy an All-American barbecue picnic with live music, family entertainment, kids’ activities, and shopping events.
Free Admission to the Philadelphia Museum of Art—Philadelphia
As part of the Wawa Welcome America! celebration, visitors can enjoy the Philadelphia Museum of Art for free.
Philly @ the Movies: Rocky!—Philadelphia
As part of the Wawa Welcome America! celebration, guests can watch movies with family and friends. Come early for educational demonstrations and interactive children's activities.
July 3, 2017
The Philly POPS on Independence—Philadelphia
As part of the Wawa Welcome America! celebration, visitors can enjoy The Philly POPS! as they return to celebrate America’s birthday.
Philly @ the Movies: Sing—Philadelphia
As part of the Wawa Welcome America! celebration, guests can watch movies with family and friends. Come early for educational demonstrations and interactive children's activities.
Philadelphia’s Historic District Block Party—Philadelphia
Families can celebrate a day filled with activities, entertainment, artists, crafters, and a variety of foods during Philadelphia’s Historic District Block Party. In addition, guests can expect three performance stages for artists to showcase their freedom of expression; the arts, music, and speech.
July 4, 2017
Annual 4th of July Celebration— Glen Mills
Celebrate Independence Day with this annual parade. The parade route is from Bethlehem United Methodist Church to Thornbury Park. Prizes are given to the best car, best float, best bike and most patriotic dog and owner. Parade formation begins at 9:30 AM with the parade to start at 10 AM.
Independence Day Parade—Philadelphia
Enjoy Philadelphia's Independence Day Parade featuring over 6,000 participants.
July 4th Community Picnic in the Park— Valley Forge
Families can celebrate our nation's independence with a variety of historic fun at Valley Forge National Historical Park. Guests can expect artillery demonstrations, musket demonstrations, the reading of the Declaration of Independence, and storytelling benches.
Party on the Parkway— Philadelphia
Kids and grown-ups alike enjoy this day-long Party on the Parkway. Guests can participate in activities and games and listen to a variety of musical entertainment. Food is available for purchase, too.
Heuser Park 4th of July Celebration —King of Prussia
Guests to Heuser Park can expect food, rides, games, music, fireworks, and more. Music is performed by The Mango Men. Fireworks begin at dusk.
Quakertown Community Day—Quakertown
Guests to Quakertown Community Day can expect food, live music, a car show, games, prizes, and of course, fireworks.
Good Neighbor Day—Downingtown
Families can enjoy entertainment all day long at Kerr Park. Guests can expect bike-decorating, canoe races, food, music, carnival rides, and games. In addition, there are many races from which to choose: 5K, 10K, 15K, and annual Kids' Run. The day concludes with fireworks set to begin around dusk.
July 8, 2017
Hosted by Makin' Music, this annual festival features the delicious blueberry as the star of the show. Visit Linvilla Orchards to pick your own blueberries or participate in a blueberry pie eating contest. The rain date is July 9.
July 9, 2017
The Chestnut Hill Business District and Weavers Way Co-op join forces once again to celebrate four-legged friends. Petapalooza takes place along Germantown Avenue and offers a variety of activities for both animals and their favorite humans.
July 15, 2017
Bring the family and harvesting pails out to gather sweet and delicious wineberries. These bright summer gems are a delight to gather and eat – and they’re invasive plants, so visitors can help get them out of the forest. Take home your harvest and make wonderful wineberry pies, muffins, and more.
Bluegrass and Blueberries Festival—Lahaska
Peddler's Village celebrates bluegrass and blueberries during this weekend celebration. Guests can expect a variety of blueberry treats and can listen to toe-tapping bluegrass and country music. The Festival continues July 16.
Bastille Day Festival—Philadelphia
Families can spend the afternoon at Eastern State Penitentiary's French Family Carnival. Guests can expect to enjoy music, games, and entertainment on Fairmount Avenue, including an inflatable obstacle course, Tastykake eating contest, water balloon toss, jumbo Jenga and Twister, face painting, and more.
July 22, 2017
Sweet Corn and Blackberry Festival—Media
What foods remind us of summer? Sweet corn and blackberries of course! Besides tasting and picking these tasty foods, visitors can enjoy live music, games, costumed characters, and a magic show.
Annual Beekeeping and Honey Festival— Bryn Mawr
Both adults and children alike can try on bee suits, visit the hives, and help extract honey at this annual festival. Learn about the importance of the honeybee to the landscape and food supply.
July 31, 2017
Franklin Square's Birthday Celebration— Philadelphia
Franklin Square turns 11 this year so stop by to celebrate. Ben Franklin is there to cut the cake.
August 5, 2017
In the Good Old Summertime- Schwenksville
Bring the family for an afternoon of lawn games, Victorian dress up, garden exploration in the Children's Heritage Garden, and hands-on fun in the 1900's History Center. A vintage car show with the Delaware Valley Classic MG Car Club is on view.
August 12, 2017
Delicious peaches await visitors to Linvilla Orchards. Guests can pick their own peaches, enjoy live music, crafts, activities, and more. This festival is hosted by Makin' Music.
Peddler's Village celebrates the delectable fruit, the peach, during this summertime festival. Guests can expect delicious peach treats throughout the village, live musical entertainment, and the Peddlers' Village annual sidewalk sale. The festival continues August 13.
Who's Awake? Family Night Hike—Pheonixville
What happens outside at night? Families who participate in this nighttime hike can learn about creatures and critters. Guests can take a guided night walk to experience Black Rock’s “dark side." Flashlights are welcome. Be sure to register in advance for this event.
Nectarine and Peach Festival—Robbinsville, NJ
All are invited to Oasis Family Farm for this fun festival celebrating the peach. Lots of delicious goodies including fresh-baked peach pie, peach cobbler, grilled peaches, peach ice cream, cider, and more. No u-pick peaches during this event. Activities for children include wagon rides, sand art, and more. Event takes place August 13, 14, 20, and 21.
August 13, 2017
Touch a Truck—West Chester
Has your child every wanted to play in a real live truck? This family-friendly event is your chance for kids to get a close look at service vehicles such as fire trucks and ambulances. Traditionally, this is a well-attended event so plan accordingly. Parking is $3 per vehicle.
August 18, 2017
Tall Trees Playdate—Philadelphia
Explore the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education at its Tall Trees Playscape event. This all-natural playground allows children to dig in the sand, explore the mud kitchen, play on the music wall, and more. Meet new friends and discover the wonders of the outdoors.
August 25, 2016
Free Admission to Benjamin Franklin Museum- Philadelphia
In honor of the National Park Service's birthday, visitors to the Benjamin Franklin Museum receive free admission from August 25 to August 28.
August 26, 2017
It is the season for tomatoes. And, it is time for Linvilla Orchards' annual Tomato Festival. Besides enjoying these delicious foods, guests to the festival can expect appearances from the Silly Joe, a local beekeeper, Tomato Dog, Dr. Duck, and much more!
September 7, 2017
Philadelphia Honey Festival- Philadelphia
Sweet liquid gold is the star of the show during The Philadelphia Honey Festival. Throughout the weekend, guests are invited to celebrate at three different locations featuring a variety of activities. The festival lasts until September 10.
September 16, 2017
Arts, Crafts, and Music Festival—Media
Guests to Linvilla Orchards enjoy live music from local musicians and beautiful crafts created by local artisans. This is a 2-day event.
Peddler's Village Annual Scarecrow Festival is a weekend full of fall family fun. Guests can expect scarecrow-making workshops, pumpkin pie-eating contests, pumpkin painting, live musical entertainment, and children's activities. This is a 2-day event.
Archeology Festival— Glen Mills
Meet in front of the Mill for this all-day, hands-on festival. Visitors can participate in archeological activities such as assisting with three different excavations, sifting, cleaning, and processing artifacts. Guests can view artifact displays from around the country as well.
Swing on hammocks at Spruce Street Harbor Park
Take a hike or a bike ride
Walk along a boardwalk at the Jersey Shore
Visit a sprayground
Have a picnic
Go swimming at a public pool
Visit the animals at Linvilla Orchards
Play at Smith Memorial Playground
Take a day trip to Atlantic City beachcin
Do some family gardening
Set up sprinklers in the backyard
Go to a pop-up garden or beer garden
Volunteer or do some community service
Photo credit Matt Stanley of Delaware River Waterfront.