Free Summer "Staycation" Ideas

For those of us without summer houses, ambitious travel plans, backyard pools or padded wallets, the idea of a “staycation” is awfully appealing.

Just think about it:  No packing. No jet lag. No worrying about flight delays or lost luggage. No fretting about bed bugs at hotels.

You get to have a family adventure in your own town. And even better — this weekend, it’s free. All thanks to Target, which has partnered with more than 80 cultural and art institutions in 30 cities to launch the Target Arts & Wonder Free Family Event.

In New York City, Target has teamed up with 12 great cultural groups — including The Museum of Modern Art, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and Brooklyn Museum — to present free summer fun this weekend, July 16-18.

But don’t worry if you can’t make it to any events this weekend. Here are some good low-budget family “staycation” ideas for all summer long courtesy of

1. Go Back to Nature
Take the kids hiking. Check out for a list of hiking trails in your area.

2. Check Out The Art Scene
Many towns have free summer festivals or outdoor concerts. Museums often have at least a few hours that are pay-what-you-wish or free.

3. “Camp” in Your Own Backyard
Set up a tent, bring out the sleeping bag and tell ghost stories. What could be more fun?

4. Go Swimming
Head to the local pool. Bring some friends and fruity drinks and make believe you’re at an exotic resort.

5. Catch a Cheap Movie
Some cinema chains offer free or discounted kids’ movies on certain weekday mornings. You’ll save so much money that you won’t mind splurging on a large popcorn.

My family is going to camp at a local campground by a lake this weekend. What do you have planned?


Article Posted 6 years Ago

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