Welcome to our kids’ guide to summer! Below are some ideas of inexpensive summer fun with kids in Wichita – summer activities for kids, fun things to do, and family-friendly ideas that will help keep them busy and happy all summer long.
Our guide has tons of ideas for summer family outings, summer events, and more things to do with your kids this summer in Wichita. Can you think of some other inexpensive and fun summer activities for kids in Wichita? If you see that we’ve missed something, please let us know in the comments!
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Grab a Groupon: Before you head off to the sports complex or kid-friendly attraction, be sure to check Groupon for local deals that will save you 20-50% off. If you can find a Groupon promo code, it will be an even better deal!
Summer Activities for Kids & Familes in Wichita
(These are ongoing activities available through most of the summer.)
Please note: Summer 2020 is going to be a little different around Wichita; we are doing our best to stay updated on what’s open and what isn’t, but you should definitely double-check before you promise the kids anything.
Troll the Keeper
- Every evening you can watch the ring of fire around the Keeper of the Plains light up our sky. 2020 schedule has been a little different and we’re not sure when they will start lighting the fires this year, but the walk is worth it anyway.
- Get to the Keeper area a little early so you can look for the Troll. He’s hidden under the sidewalk that goes along the river – you’ll know when you’ve found him!!
Explore walking trails
- Get a breath of fresh air and some exercise with our list of Walking trails in Wichita.
- Visit Great Plains Nature Center for some completely free fun with nature.
- Be entertained for hours without paying a dime at Riverside park, zoo, playground, and
splash park. (Splash parks may not all be open yet.)
- Play all afternoon at O.J. Watson Park, which has a miniature train to ride,
pony rides, pedal boats, miniature golf, and three playgrounds. Activities are all very inexpensive, but you can also buy coupon books for even more savings. The park is at 3022 S. McLean Blvd. in Wichita. (The park is open as of this writing, but some activities – like the pony rides – are closed. See the update as of June 2, 2020.)
- Stop by the ICT Popup Park downtown during lunchtime, and while you’re there be sure to walk to the next block to find Reflection Square Park.
Go for 300
- Kids bowl free and grown-ups bowl cheap all summer long.
Pick some summer fun
- Find a farm to pick some fresh berries, apples, peaches, or pumpkins at a you-pick farm near Wichita.
Become a Kansas tourist
- A vacation in your own state can be just as refreshing and fun as a long-distance trip, with the added bonus of getting there faster! Check out our series of Kansas road trips for some ideas! Here’s a good place to start: Kansas Road Trip Travel Essentials
- TravelKS, from the Kansas Department of Commerce and Tourism, is also a good place to start, as is their Facebook page, to get ideas and find ways to save.
- Explore Wichita like a visitor and get $2 off admission at some of our favorite local attractions.
- Check out Emily’s list of Wichita’s kid-friendly attractions.
- The Sedgwick County Zoo is open with limited admissions each day.
- Take in Tanganyika. If you bought the $20 season pass, you can go practically every day!
- Stroll through the “roofless museum” of the Wichita Art Museum’s new Art Garden. Admission is free year-round, and on the third Saturday morning of the month, they have docent-led tours, also free.
- The Wichita Art Museum will open Tuesday, June 23 and is free every Saturday, and in the past, on the fourth Saturday of the month they have had a free Family Artventure.
- Crawling isn’t just for babies. The First Friday Art Crawl is a wonderful time to enjoy the art in Wichita.
- Find every Wichita mural.
- Visit some awesome outdoor sculptures around town.
Go to town
- Relive the old west days with free admission to Cowtown on Sunday afternoons.
- Visit some citywide and/or neighborhood garage sales.
- Or you might enjoy these barn sales and outdoor markets.
- And take a stroll through our very own farmers markets.
Become a bookworm
- Summer reading programs are back and there are prizes! Get back in the books and have the kids sign up.
- Kids can get a free book through Barnes and Noble summer reading program.
Cast your cares and catch some family time
- Did you know that fishing is free for kids under 16? (They don’t need a license.) Find your favorite spot for fishing in the Wichita metro area.
- Also, the first weekend in June is free fishing for everyone in Kansas.
Discover some artifacts
- Learn some history about our city via our city museums and attractions.
- Museum of World Treasures offers discounted admission each month on Late Nights.
- Go out to eat at a restaurant with a kids eat free special!
- Take a culinary tour of cheap eats in Wichita by trying out every $5 lunch special
Fly a kite
- Your summer will be looking up when you watch your kite take flight! Check out our favorite kite shop in Wichita, Wings of the Wind Kites and Toys.
- Most years, you can find a free, family-friendly kite-flying event in Wichita and nearby. Tip: If there are no kite-flying events, find a nice area in the park where there are few trees and no power lines to get tangled up in.
Enjoy the Drive-in
- Enjoy one of the very last drive-ins and check out a movie at Starlite Drive-in.
Get your game on
Putt-putter around town
- Kids love to play mini-golf! Watson Park and All Star Wichita are two places that have mini-golf.
Be friends with the Bison
- Kids under 12 should sign up for the free City Crew club! They host lots of free and fun activities throughout the year. This year, according to their website, the events will begin in late September
Summer Family Fun Events in Wichita
Here’s a list of family-friendly summer events coming up in the next 7 days. You’ll want to bookmark this page because it will show new events every day.
If you’d rather, you can skip the events and go directly to the kids summer activity ideas.
Be sure to click the links to get more information about each event!
Reminder: Planned events may need to be rescheduled or canceled. Please be sure to double-check with the event organizers in case of cancellations.
Sunday, August 9, 2020
Monday, August 10, 2020
Tuesday, August 11, 2020
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
Thursday, August 13, 2020
Friday, August 14, 2020
Make sure you check the Wichita Free & Cheap Events Calendar too, because we’ll be adding events to it throughout the summer.
And subscribe to the free Wichita on the Cheap e-newsletter so you never miss a deal.
Unconfirmed or Not Happening Summer Deals and Ideas
Learn something new
Waiting for information on these awesome summer activities.
Sign up for classes and activities through the Wichita recreation department HERE. Take up a new hobby with kids’ craft classes at Home Depot, Michael’s and other local maker-type stores Or, learn something old with these Free Summer Programs at the Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum
Be a sports nut
These sports halls of fame are currently closed or we are waiting for information.
Visit the Wichita Sports Hall of Fame on a Saturday afternoon or the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame at the Boathouse on a weekday. Admission is free, although donations are accepted.
Go to school??
We have not heard whether McCormick is open again. We will update you as soon as possible.
School is fun when you don’t need a hall pass to walk around. Visit the McCormick School Museum on Sundays and Wednesdays. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.
Golf fore free
The Wichita Junior Golf season has been cancelled for 2020.
This year, kids ages 17 and younger can golf free at any Wichita Public Golf Course! It’s totally true (and totally free)!
Groove with the music
- Canceled for 2020
Kick back and listen to jazz in the heart of Bradley Fair.
- Waiting for more information
Enjoy a summer concert on the lawn at the new CapFed Amphitheater.
Debut a family movie night
At the moment, we are waiting for more movie opportunities to arrive for your family. Stick with us, we’ll update as soon as we get information.
During the month of June you can bring in your kids’ report cards to Family Video and get a free movie rental for every A! Beat the heat by coming to watch some inexpensive movies with your kids at Derby Plaza Theatre. Do the Dome at Exploration Place Make Tuesday movie night with $5 tickets at AMC Northrock 14. And go again on Wednesday for $5 night movie night at the Old Town Warren. Or see the whole list of Summer Movies in Wichita!
Waltz at the Waterwalk
Waiting for information on the reopening of these fountains.
Cool off by watching the waltzing waters at the Waterwalk Fountains.
Be a literal cheapskate
These deals are not available yet.
Chill out with $2 ice skating days at the Wichita Ice Center. Lace up your skates and let your kids can enjoy two free skating sessions this summer with the Kids Skate Free Program.
Unfortunately, the WATER center is closed temporarily. We have our eye on reopenings and will update this as soon as we get word.
The WATER Center in Herman Hill Park is a great place to look at aquariums and learn about water.
Make a splash
We are waiting to hear more information about the pools and splash pads this year. We will update this as soon as we hear about the pools and splash pads opening.
Cool off with FREE Interactive Fountains and Splash Pads in the Wichita area. Go swimming for free! Visit all the city pools on Free Swimming Days. Or check out our complete guide to Where You Can Swim in Wichita.
SayYES! to a whole summer of free activities and transportation around town for Wichita kids ages 5-18. (Stay tuned to see if they do this again in 2019!)
- We have not seen this deal advertised anywhere.
After all your fun, you can treat yourself and your kids with half price shakes after 8 at Sonic.
- We’re hoping to get information on whether these deals are coming back for 2020.
Get $3 admission to the Sedgwick County Zoo on Tuesday evenings in July. Get $3 admission to the Sedgwick County Zoo for the Back to School Bash in August. Groupon for the Wichita Ice Center (Summer is my FAVORITE time to go ice skating! So cool.)
Still not enough ideas? Sign up for our free email newsletter because we send out updates with new events or activities when we find out about them.
Do you have littles in the toddler set? You’ll appreciate this big, big list of free and cheap kids activities!
Feeling hot? Enjoy some of these free and inexpensive Indoor Play Places.
See the full list of free or inexpensive summer movies in Wichita!
Pin this to your Wichita Kids Activities board!