Deals Episodes

Free and Cheap Summer Activities Options for Kids

With summer on the horizon, many parents are looking for something for their kids to do for three months! While most summer camps are expensive, here are some cheap and even free options to keep your family busy during summer vacation.

Summertime can bring a little anxiety for many parents. After all you do have about 90 full days to figure out what to do with your kids!

"We've looked into camps. You're talking $900 to a couple thousand depending on what you need," says parent Shari Mogard.

Never fear: Deals is here to help! Many companies offer affordable or sometimes free activities to keep those kids entertained.

"Busy kids means they're not doing something they shouldn't be doing as far as I'm concerned," Shari says.

Here's a list of some of our favorites:

Bowling: Some centers offer two free games a day. You must register first and can usually bring others with you. A quick internet search should tell you which bowling alleys in your area offer this deal. Call ahead to confirm.

Michaels: Michaels stores offer $2 two-hour summer camp Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You have to sign up in the store to attend. Some stores also have a 30-minute class on Saturdays and a free monthly class for the entire family. Call ahead to confirm.

Lowes: Free Build and Grow arts and crafts every Saturday. Check your local store to find more information.

Home Depot: Free kids workshops on Saturdays. Check your local store to find more information.

Libraries: Many offer free activities for kids of all ages. Check your local branch to see what's offered.

Salvation Army: Yearly membership fee $50 to $100 depending on location. Membership offers you unlimited access to all activities from summer camp, field trips and tutoring. Call your local Salvation Army to see what's offered. They may even have free or reduced rates, depending on your income..

Churches: Many churches will offer affordable summer camps for kids. Call your local church to see what it offers.

Internships for Teens: Check your local hospital for volunteer opportunities. There is usually a waiting list, so it never hurts to apply early. Texas Children's Hospital has 250 junior volunteers a year. They get direct patient contact as well as opportunities to work in the office.

Many museums also offer junior volunteer opportunities for teens.

For more on Lowe's Build and Grow, visit LowesBuildAndGrow.com.

For more on kids' workshops from Home Depot, visit workshops.homedepot.com.

For more on classes from Michael's, visit classes.michaels.com.

For more on Salvation Army activities for youth, visit SalvationArmyUSA.com.

For more on internship with Texas Children's Hospital, visit waystogive.TexasChildrens.org.

For more internship ideas for teens in your area, visit internships.com.
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