10 Frugal Family Summer Activities That Won’t Empty Your Pockets

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Summertime is finally just around the corner and you know what that means, right? The kids are freaking excited for summer vacation. While there’s no dearth for fun summer activities with the whole family, certain kinds of fun can drill a giant crater in your wallet. 


Saving money without skimping on fun is an art. A little bit of planning is all it takes to come up with a list of chap and free summer activities for the entire family. 


In this article, I am going to shed light on 10 such summertime activities that are ideal for all the frugal families like mine. 


Here we go: 


1. Picnic in the Backyard

A perfect summer picnic doesn’t have to take place in a fancy park. Turn your lawn into a cozy picnic spot on a bright and sunny day and invite your friends and relatives to join y’all. 


Have simple picnic foods like PB&Js, egg salad, fried chicken and freshly fruits to nibble on, drink cocktails (and juices for kids, obviously), click some amazing photos, and chill!


2. Backyard Water Slides

Don’t have the pool in the neighborhood? Fret not. Just get an inflatable backyard water slide and amp up the fun. 


These inflatables are cheap and an ingenious way to create a DIY water park right in your backyard. Apart from untethered fun, water slides also help to burn calories and improve cardio fitness and stamina. 


3. Water Fight

Intense water fight in the backyard with siblings? Sign me up! Whoever says water fighting is just for kids are kidding both you and themselves. 


There are lots of cheap toys for backyard water fighting such as water guns, reusable water balloons, water balloons launchers, and bazookas. 


Water fighting isn’t just ballistic fun but a great exercise too since it involves a lot of running around the yard. Make sure a large batch of freshly made lemonades are ready because you will get thirsty from all the heavy battle. 


4. Hit the Farmer’s Market

As a kid, I used to visit the farmer’s market with my father and uncle every summer and fall. Hearing the stories of the farmers, learning about the farming process, tasting free samples used to be some of the major highlights of my summer holidays. 


You are most likely to find a farmer’s market within a short driving distance from your home. 


Take your kids with you, browse the stalls, buy some fresh local produce directly from the farmers, and allow your children to help cook them. It sounds great on paper and feels even better in reality. 


5. Karaoke Night

Now, this is something you can do with your whole family without spending a penny, assuming you already have internet connection, home speakers, and a microphone. 


You will find the karaoke version of most songs on YouTube, so that part is sorted. To display the lyrics, you can connect your TV to your YouTube streaming device (be it your laptop, phone, or tablet) to your smart TV via HDMI cable or through WI-Fi. 


I like to use Chromecast to mirror the phone screen on my smart TV for a lag-free experience. If you don’t own a mic, buy one. 


A small Bluetooth karaoke microphone won’t hurt your pocket and as a bonus, you will be able to enjoy countless nights of revelry with your friends and family. 


6. Turn Your Home into a Creamery

Nothing screams ice cream louder than summer. Ditch the ice cream truck and assemble your entire family in the kitchen to create unique ice cream flavors. 


You can either shell out a few bucks on an electric ice cream maker or take a simpler route of no-churn ice creams with condensed milk, heavy cream, sugar, and your choice of flavors. 


No-churn mango ice cream and chai latte ice cream are a summer staple in my family. Don’t just stick to ice creams. Buy a couple of popsicle molds and use fresh fruit extracts to whip up refreshing, delicious popsicles to beat the summer heat with. 


7. Go for Camping

Already have a tent and other supplies required for camping? Pack up and hit the local campsite with your kids. If the campsite is too far and you don’t want to drive, what’s stopping you from setting up a tent and lighting a campfire in your backyard? 


Bring out the graham crackers and marshmallows, put on some good music, stargaze, or tell each other horror stories sitting around the fire. 


8. Host a Bike Parade

Who says bike parades have to take place only on the 4th of July? Kids complaining of boredom? Ask them to call up their friends, decorate their bikes with balloon arch, colorful stickers, and flags and knock themselves out on the neighborhood streets. 


9. Movie Night

Summer holidays are incomplete without good ol’ family movie nights. If you don’t have Netflix or Prime subscription, you can simply rent a movie you want to watch, microwave some popcorn, find yourself a comfortable spot on the couch, and enjoy. 


10. Beach Day

Is it even a summer holiday if you don’t get tanned (read sunburn) on the beach? Everyone loves beach trips in summer. Drive to your nearest beach and let those swimsuits finally be of some use. 


It will take a whole new article to list the number of fun activities to do at a beach. For now, I’d advise you to just wing it. 


In Conclusion


As you can see, it doesn’t take a genius to come up with summer activity ideas that don’t cost an arm and a leg. Summer break is the time for families to spend quality time together and make amazing memories. 


And you don’t need a lavish trip to an exotic island or Disneyland to make great memories. Do you? I hope the activities I mentioned above fit your idea of cheap thrills. That will be all for today. Happy summer holidays, folks!


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About The Author

Sujana Wilson is a dynamic mother, always on the lookout for fun activities with her precious daughter and fun-loving techie husband. She spends half of her time taking care of them and the other half curating content for parents who need a little guidance and support.

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