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  • Andy Murphy

Fun Summer Activities on the Cheap

Fun Summer Activities on the Cheap | The Secure Dad

It’s summer time! Time for fun in the sun and hitting the road. But what about those times in between? You know, when your kids aren’t at the beach, an amusement park or at camp? What do we do with our kids on the average summer day? Don’t worry, I’ve got 10 things you can do with your kids that won’t cost you much at all.

10 Cheap Summer Activities

1) DIY Frisbee Golf - This one is super simple and cheap. All you need are a frisbee for each kid and one for you! Next, dust off the hoolahoop. Then head out to the back yard for some customized fun. Drop the hoolahoop on the ground, go find a starting point and have your kids toss the Frisbee as many times as it takes to land it inside the hoolahoop. Then drop the hoop in a new spot and create a new course. You can also take this game with you to the park!

2) The Library - There’s no parental summertime ally like the good old library. It’s quiet, cool and they occasionally have puppet shows. Schedule a day once a week where you spend an hour picking out new books to read with your kids or even better for your kids to read themselves. Help them keep up their reading skills over the summer by building reading time into your daily routine. This way they’ll be better readers when they hit the door for the first day of school.

3) Game Tournaments - This one is a good way to pass an afternoon, game tournaments. You can set up a bracket to see who can advance to the latest round of card games, board games and even video games. Have a goofy prize at the end like a coffee mug or repurpose an old t-ball trophy for the afternoon. Then next week, start all over again.

4) Go Backyard Camping - Break out the tent, gear and marshmallows! Set up a campsite in the yard and pretend you are camping. To make this even better, start sharing fun survival skills with your kids like how to read a compass and make paracord bracelets. This can be a daytime or nighttime activity.

5) The Sprinkler - Remember the 80s? There was no YouTube, smartphones or 24 hour kids channels. We had to make our own fun and our parents use to entertain us with just a hose and a sprinkler. Do the same for your kids. Get them in their bathing suits and let them run through the water until they’re too tired to keep their eyes open!

6) Photo Safari - Create a list of 10 common things you can find around your neighborhood like mailboxes, dogs and rocks. Then set off on a photo safari adventure with your kids. This is also a good way to see what’s going on in your neighborhood from a security aspect.

7) Explore the Outdoors - In the cool of the day take your kids to a local park or state park and walk a trail. Make sure to pack plenty of water, sunscreen and bug spray. Depending on where you go, most state run trails are free. Make sure you know where you’re going in advance so you know exactly where you are all the time. Show your kids how beautiful the great outdoors really is.

8) Old Movies - During the summer most theatres will show old movies not running anymore for cheap. Take your kids to see last summer's greatest hits for half price. While you can watch Netflix at home, the experience of the theatre is something to be shared. Plus these movies are filled with other tired parents, so if your kids aren’t quiet, it’s okay.

9) Water Balloon Baseball - Yes, this exactly what you think it is. Grab a bunch of water balloons from the dollar store and fill ‘em up. Then head out to the yard for some BP. It doesn't matter if their slugging percentage takes a hit, the goal is to get wet.

10) Bake Cookies - Everyone loves cookies. You can make them from scratch or break and bake. Take the time to show your kids how the baking process works. Teach them what to do and not to do in the kitchen. Then, deliver the cookies to friends and neighbors so that you can talk to another adult for a while!

I hope you have a great summer. If you want to know how to make your family safer this summer, check out The Secure Dad Podcast.

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Andy Murphy

Andy Murphy founded The Secure Dad in 2016 with the aspiration to help families live safer, happier lives. What started as a personal blog about family safety has turned into an award-winning podcast, an Amazon best-selling book, and online courses. He focuses his efforts in the areas of home security, situational awareness, and online safety.


Andy is a husband and father. His interests include coaching youth basketball, hiking, and trying to figure out his 3D printer.

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