Family Picnic

Summer is here – the season of sunshine, ice cream, and outdoor activities. However, many people assume that making the most of the summer means spending a lot of money. That's not necessarily the case. Here are ten cost-saving summer activities for both kids and adults that promise fun without draining your wallet.

  1. Plan a Picnic: Save money by making sandwiches, fresh fruit skewers, and homemade lemonade. Head out to a local park or even your backyard, lay out a blanket, and enjoy a low-cost, high-fun meal with the family.
  2. Camp in the Backyard: Transform your backyard into a mini campsite. Set up a tent, roast marshmallows over a DIY fire pit, and stargaze. It's an adventurous staycation that won't break the bank.
  3. Community Events: Check your local community calendar for free or low-cost events, including concerts, art festivals, movie nights, and farmer's markets. They can provide a day's worth of entertainment for a fraction of the price.
  4. Start a Garden: Gardening is a calming, productive hobby for adults and kids alike. Grow your favorite vegetables or flowers. It's a cost-effective way to spend time outside and reap rewards later.
  5. DIY Water Park: Invest in a cheap inflatable pool, water balloons, and a slip n' slide. With these, you can create your own water park right in your backyard.
  6. Hiking and Nature Walks: Nature provides a free playground. Go on a local hike or a nature walk. It's a great opportunity to exercise, explore, and educate about local flora and fauna.
  7. Bike Rides: Dust off those bikes sitting in the garage. Family bike rides are an excellent way to have fun and get active. Consider planning a picnic at the end of a ride for added excitement.
  8. Library Programs: Most libraries have summer reading programs or craft classes that are free. They are educational and fun, providing a cool indoor respite from the summer heat.
  9. Home Movie Nights: Create a home cinema experience. Borrow DVDs from the library or use your existing streaming service. Don't forget the homemade popcorn!
  10. Craft Days: Keep a supply of basic craft materials. Drawing, painting, and making things provides creative fun on a budget.

Chicagoland Summer Fun on a Budget

Looking for some low-cost events the whole family can enjoy? Check out our list of local places, events, and happenings:

  1. The Chicago Ducky Derby: Over 50,000 yellow rubber duckies swim their way along the Chicago River August 10th. It is a sight to behold, and you can adopt your own duck while supporting the Special Olympics Illinois.
  2. Visit Bowen Park in Waukegan: The playground merges modern amenities with numerous environmental learning stations that emulate a forest ecosystem, offering children an array of activities like splashing in the water spray area, observing animal footprints, sitting on the fungi bench, sliding down forty-foot tunnel slides, and climbing a spider web.
  3. Naperville Riverwalk and Last FlingThe Naperville Riverwalk is host to a variety of shops, restaurants, art installations and parks. The Naperville Jaycee's Last Fling is a family-friendly community festival over Labor Day weekend featuring a bevy of attractions.

Summer doesn't need to be expensive to be enjoyable. With a bit of creativity and planning, you can have a memorable summer filled with activities that won't empty your savings. So, try out these cost-saving activities, make great memories, and most importantly, have fun under the summer sun!

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