Inexpensive Summer Fun Ideas – Part I

Today’s post will be short.  It is going to be a hot one today and we have some outside things to do before it gets too hot.   The kids are now out of school and I find that us parents are still looking for inexpensive summer fun ideas.  Today I thought I’d compile a few.  Not necessarily free, mind you, but inexpensive over the course of the summer.

We alternate years and get a membership at The Henry Ford ( or the Zoo (either Detroit or Toledo,  Of the two, I personally think The Henry Ford is the better value of the two as the museum is open all year and Greenfield Village is open from April to December.  Tons of activities and learning opportunities for the kids.  I’m not really a winter kind of gal, so the Zoo in the Winter isn’t happening for me.

Going every other year at one place means you get more value out of the membership, as you use that as your main summer entertainment source.  The other advantage is that you can usually end up with a discount offer to join again – up to 15% in my experience.  This also helps me to upgrade my membership to maybe bring guests or ride passes.  To get any real value, you really do need to go more than once, though.

One of the mom’s at school shared another great idea — a state parks pass.  She spends $11 for the year and alternates what parks to visit over the summer.  Pack a picnic, visit the beach, visit the playscapes, take the trails.  Makes for a very inexpensive summer.

Check out your local parks and rec department for free or low cost activities.   You can also check out Metro Parent, – they compile all kinds of lists of things to do in Southeast Michigan, with a good number of them being free.   In part two, I’ll try to focus on free activities.

What kind of free or low cost things do you do over the summer?


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