Looking for things for your child to do this summer that won't break the bank?
Well, there's no better cost than free. We rounded up some free activities that will help you fill your child's summer schedule so you never have to hear, “I'm bored.”
Rock quarry. Hanson Aggregates Mideast – Ardmore Quarry, 6100 Ardmore Ave., offers an amazing scene for not only the young but also old. Visitors can stand on an observation tower and view trucks moving rock in a gigantic hole in the ground. Open daylight to dusk. Admission is free; 747-3105.
Splash pads. Fort Wayne has eight splash pads where kids can have a blast getting wet and parents can take a break. You can even make a day of it by bringing a picnic lunch as most of the splash pads are in parks. The splash pads are at: Buckner Park, 6114 Bass Road; Franklin School Park, 1903 St. Marys Ave.; Kreager Park, North River Road; McCormick Park, 2300 Raymond Ave.; Memorial Park, 2301 Maumee Ave.; Robert E. Meyers Park, inside Parkview Field; Shoaff Park, 6401 St. Joe Road; and Waynedale Park, 2900 Koons St.
At the ballpark. Parkview Field, 1301 Ewing St., is open to walkers and visitors 7 a.m. to sunset as long as there are no events scheduled. Take the kids out to the park and let them see where the TinCaps play and marvel at the stadium. Young baseball fans will get a treat looking at the field. Bonus: Parkview Field will have PBS39 Explorer Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 29 with educational activities, games, performances and PBS characters. The event is free.
At the library. If you haven't checked out everything the library has to offer, then you are missing out. The library has several programs and activities for all ages, including summer reading events. Go to the Allen County Public Library's website (www.acpl.lib.in.us) to find out about classes, activities and events. The downtown library also has movie night, which offers a film screening in its theater. Check the website for dates.
Get outside. Take the kids to visit the nature preserves that we have in Allen County. There is Salomon Farm on Dupont Road, where kids can see farm animals and gardens, as well as a historic barn. Lindenwood Nature Preserve, 600 Lindenwood Ave., has trails and a nature center. Eagle Marsh, 6801 Engle Road, allows kids to see what wetlands look like and all the creatures it contains. ACRES Land Trust also has many preserves that are great for exploring (www.acreslandtrust.org).
Look at the stars. Spend an evening looking at the night sky with the Fort Wayne Astronomical Society. There is free stargazing every Saturday through November starting one hour after sunset at the Star'Quest Observatory, Jefferson Township Park, 1720 S. Webster Road, New Haven.
Ride a bike. Every Tuesday at 6 p.m. the cities of Fort Wayne and New Haven and Fort Wayne Trails offers Trek the Trails, a family-friendly bike ride that uses the trail system. The event is free, and bikers are able to enjoy a different location each week. For more information or to find out where the next bike ride will take place, go to www.fwtrails.org.
$1 movies. OK, I know we said this was all free stuff, but low-cost is always good, too. Regal Coldwater Crossing will have its Summer Movie Express on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m., offering two G- and PG-rated movies each day for $1. Go to www.myregal.com to find out what movies are scheduled to play.