Are you ready for a great Summer? This is the Ultimate Summer Bucket List with 30 fun and unique ideas which some of them are free! Fill your Summer days with long-lasting fun memories and adventures with your tribe. Don’t forget to download your printable Summer Bucket List of ideas and blank sheet to write down your must-do adventures for the warm weather!
Summer days are hot, sunny and magically seem to stretch out forever. I love Summer most because of the months I get to spend with my children in-between the frenzy of school. This is the time when we plan vacation, but also spend as much time as we can making amazing memories together before school begins and our schedules are infinitely more crazy.
My family makes a Summer Bucket List each year, and this is something fun families can do together to plan adventures and memory-making outings together.
I know each year I go searching for new ideas of what we should do together. Often I’m left looking for ideas last-minute, but this year we’re researching, getting creative and writing down our Summer bucket list so we never run out of ideas.
And ultimately, less stress for you!
These ideas are inexpensive and some you may even have the supplies already in your garage, pantry or backyard.
Here you’ll find a list of fun ideas you can add to your Summer Bucket list of activities I promise your children and whole family will enjoy doing together.
This is the Summer Bucket List you’ve been Waiting For!
(Pssst… don’t forget to snag your free printables at the end of this article. There’s a printable for writing down your family’s Summer Bucket List and 30 ideas so you never run out of fun things to do!)
Set Up a Lemonade Stand
Summer weather screams Lemonade (or at least something cold and delicious!) Your kids will love making the lemonade, using their math skills and sales pitch to the neighbors for an afternoon or fun. Add in a plate of cookies, coffee for adults or flowers, and you’ve got yourself a booming business.
Paint the Sidewalk & Patio with Water
What’s easier than throwing together a few paintbrushes and a bucket of water and letting your children paint the sidewalks and your patio over and over? As the sun dries up the canvas, they’ll be able to start fresh again and again.
Make Homemade Ice Cream
Nothing tastes better in the Summer heat than cold ice cream and the homemade version is the best of it’s kind.
Find The Nearest Music in the Park / Outdoor Concert
It’s not uncommon for local parks to host music in the park in the evenings. Search your nearby parks to find outdoor concerts. Pack dinner, bring a few chairs and picnic blanket and enjoy dinner and music at dusk with friends and family.
Attend a Farmer’s Market
Aside from the freshest local fruit and vegetables you’ll find, Farmer’s Markets can be found most weekends, and sometimes on weekdays and usually feature local musical acts and entertainment. Grab a freshly picked apple (or pony up to the food truck for a cinnamon roll or gyro), and sit down to enjoy the free entertainment and morning sunshine.
Make Melted Crayon Art
If you’re a parent, you probably already have everything you need to create a new style of art with crayons and a little heat. Here are several fun tutorials your kids will enjoy young and older.
Cook Up Your Own Popsicles
You can buy simple popsicle molds at the grocery store or these reusable popsicle molds.
Pick Blueberries, Strawberries or Apples
Jump on google and search for nearby locations which allow berry picking or an orchard where you and your children can go to pick apples. Just be prepared that children will eat more than they pick and save. Afterwards, you can make your own homemade jam, throw in smoothies or wash and eat on the spot.
Google search for local farms nearby which offer the chance to apple and/or berry pick. You pay for the weight of the produce you pick and it’s a great way to eat fresh from the community. Here is a listing of Pick Your Own Farms to search for a nearby location.
Learn How To _____________
What is it this Summer your kids want to learn? Is it how to ride a bike, crochet, play soccer, learn the guitar, or to master a new hobby?
Set a goal for the Summer for each of your kids – and yourself – to master something new and you can all head back to school raving about the new skill they learned.
Have a Water Balloon / Squirt Gun Fight
Fill a bucket with squirt guns and water balloons and welcome a water battle until the last balloon has popped and everyone is stoked. May the fastest runner stay dry and the laughter from everyone fill you up!
PS – these are the absolute BEST water balloons (no more individual ties.)
Snag a Free Slurpee from 7-11 on National Slurpee Day
7-Eleven offers free small slurpees on July 11th. Yum!
This is an easy craft that requires minimal supplies, but may just make bird watchers out of you and your kids!
Tie Dye T-Shirts (Or Other Gear)
Grab a few older t-shirts, or other gear (pants, sweater, hat, socks, tank top) and have a tie-dye party in your backyard. Invite a few friends or neighbors over for a fun afternoon of creating custom clothes.
- This is the same tie-dye kit we use at our house and love!
Go Night Swimming
Scope out the hours of your local pool, or nearby recreation center to see when they offer the chance for night swimming after the sun has gone down. Some pools even offer you the chance to bring glow sticks and glow items for added fun!
Head out For Free Fishing
Most states offer a handful of free fishing days during the year, where you can fish on public water without paying the fee for a permit. Dates vary by state.
See a Summer Movie
Some hot days, there is nothing better than sitting in a n air-conditioned movie theatre! Regal Cinemas offers $1 movies during their summer express series. Movies play on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10am and tickets are $1.00 per person. Check out the local listings and movie selections here.
Take a Free Factory Tour
With over 500 factories across the country offering free tours, sign up to explore your city and sample ice cream, candy, beer (without kids) and tour stadiums. Check here for a factory tour in your city and maybe even enjoy a few free samples along the way.
Camping in the Backyard
There is something magical about camping – and kids aren’t particular if it’s in a National Park or your backyard. So, unpack those tents, roll out the sleeping bags, pack the cooler and take it 10 feet outside your door for a night (or two, if you’re brave enough) under the stars.
If you are ready for braving the wilderness with kids, here are some pretty amazing camping hacks to help eliminate the stress of camping with kids and make the entire experience fun! don’t want to miss out on.
Paint Kindness Rocks For Your Neighborhood
Imagine walking through the neighborhood and finding a rock that’s painted bright green and pink with the words, “You are Beautiful” painted on them. Wouldn’t finding something like this make you smile? And then feel good? Get your children involved in this kindness project – collecting, painting rocks and then spreading them out int he neighborhood to brighten the day of others.
Go to a Local Festival / Fair
In the Summer months, it seems local fairs, rodeos and festivals pop up every weekend. Get those calendars out, find one that looks like it’d be fun for your entire family, pack sunscreen and get a taste of the local flair.
Search your city for local festivals and food fairs you can attend for free. A lot of local festivals will have entertainment for kids such as bounce houses, activities, petting zoos and face painting. Here is a nationwide festival search engine you might find usual but be sure to check local listings which may be more informative.
Go Bowling (for Free)
Select bowling centers across the city participate in the Kids Bowl Free program. Children who sign up are eligible for 2 free games a day, all summer long. Search to find the nearest participating bowling alley to you.
Get Dressed Up for a Lunch Date
It’s time to get fancy and make lunch (or breakfast or dinner) something special. Dress up and head out for a food date with those you love.
Visit a Local Barn with Farm Animals
Search for a nearby barn or farm with a petting zoo and animals, just don’t forget to bring the hand sanitizer with you.
Make Squirt Gun Art on a Canvas
Combing paint and squirt guns is a dream arts and craft project for kids, and also perfect for those warm days when you want to be outside and not cleaning up messes indoors.
Make Homemade Slime
Slime is all the rage, but instead of buying it from the store, make your own! Not only is this a fun project to do together, but when you make it yourself, it’s such cheaper and you probably have all the ingredients you need in your kid’s art supplies.
- Here are a ton of awesome slime recipes with limited ingredients
Plan a Backyard Movie Night
Watch a movie with your family tucked under blankets and seated together under the stars. Creating a DIY movie in the backyard isn’t as hard as it sounds!
Make Snow Cones
This would also be a great addition to the lemonade stand, and absolutely delicious in the midst of a heat wave! Shaved ice is a special treat, but easy for kids to make and dress with flavored syrup.
Raise Butterflies & Release Them
While butterflies are no puppies, they are magical to grow and then release. Witness one of nature’s most spectacular transformations up close. Butterfly kits come with vouchers for caterpillars and then your children will be abel to watch as they transform into beautiful butterflies and are ready for flight.
Head to the Rink and Roller Skate for Free
Check the listings to see if there is a roller rink nearby which participates in the Kids Skate Free program. If your local roller rink doesn’t participate in this program, you can send them this letter encouraging them to join.
Create a Free Michael’s Kid Craft all Summer Month
Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from June 12th – July 28th Michael’s has craft and activities to sign up for, aimed at children 3 years and up. Check it Out Here
For more FREE activities to do in the Summer, see the full listing of free entertainment in this article.
Join the 5-Day No Yelling Challenge
It's time for change. Are you ready to be a calm parent and learn how to stop yelling? Join the challenge now!