Summer In The City – Outside Games For Kids And Budget Friendly Tips

Kids at Play

Summer In The City – Outside Games For Kids And Budget Friendly Tips

With school out and summer in full swing many of us parents are looking for things to do with our kids that aren’t going to break the bank. Lets face it, our kids and we get bored easily, especially with the monotony and repetitive visits to the same places. As the adage says, variety is the spice of life. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of summer without losing your mind.

Try a new park – so many outside games for kids!

Go to the park, but not ‘that’ park. We all have a favourite park that we go to; it’s usually close by and we run into fellow parents and friends. Like anything, these reliable journeys can and do get boring. So take some time and find another park in your neighbourhood or close by. Make an adventure around going to it. If you do a little bit of homework, you should be able to find something fun and exciting for both you and the kids. Your kids will have new things to climb on and explore and everyone can make new friends.


Street festivals are a great way to explore different neighbourhoods, cultures and food without leaving the city. Many of these are free events, and offer things like parades, music, and other performances that either free or available at a minimal cost.

Farmer’s Markets

These are a personal favourite of mine. I love browsing farmers markets and talking to the vendors and our the kids love meeting the farmers. It’s a great way to eat locally even if it is just for a quick snack. Our kids love going to the markets, perhaps it is their love of grocery shopping or the possibility that they will get something new and exciting to eat.

Splash pads and public pools

I am a huge fan of splash pads, as our boys naturally love jumping in puddles. Just remember to put on plenty of sunscreen and reapply often. I also like to bring a few extra snacks and towels just so they can play a little longer.

Trails and city walks

Go for a hike in a ravine or a local trail. If you have to drive for a little bit, go for it. Getting out amongst the trees and a babbling brook is so refreshing. Don’t want to leave the city? Many cities have pre-planned routes that take you through the city. While they maybe designed for tourists, your kids may not have seen the sites, and besides, when was the last time you explored your city?

Head to the farm

Many farms cater to the pick-it-yourself-ers. Check out what grows close to you and head down to the farm with the kids to eat what someone else has sewn.

Have other fun activities to do during the summer? Let me know!


Quick Tips:

  • Check out a new park, or go for a splash

  • Culture! Go to a festival this summer

  • Try new, locally grown foods at a market

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Dina M. Kulik, MD, FRCPC, PEM

About Dina M. Kulik, MD, FRCPC, PEM

Dina is a wife, mother of 4, and adrenaline junky. She loves to share children’s health information from her professional and personal experience. More About Dr Dina.

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