10 Budget-Friendly Things To Do in Greater Cincinnati

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There are so many FREE and inexpensive ways to explore your city! Grab the kids, pack some lunches and save a buck this fall!

Summit Park | 4335 Glendale Milford Road, Blue Ash | 513-745-8644
Check out a new park this season! Summit Park in Blue Ash, for example, is a park you could spend all day at! Play on the technical Ninja Warrior-style playground, walk the trails, ride your bike, play and explore in the newest natural playscape, ride to the top of the Observation Tower, pack a lunch, participate in an outdoor exercise class, attend a movie night, get ice cream or get a hot dog at the Senate.

Explore the Library
Story time, lectures, STEM classes, chess class, escape room, blocks, puppet shows, crafts, homeschool programs, music, essential oils, homework help, ESL classes, Maker Space, etc. – there’s always something happening at your local library, and educational, too!

Recreational Outlets | 885 St. Rt. 28 Milford | 513-831-7383
Charity Play is $2 per child Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 9 – 11 a.m. Not free, but an inexpensive way to play indoors, plus it benefits a local cause! 

Great Parks of Hamilton County
Over 78 nature trails, playgrounds, animal programs, ranger-led programs and more! Between 21 local parks open 365 days a year, you will never run out of something to do! Find a park near you!

Community Events
Check out community websites for events that are free and open to the public. Head to one of these two free fall festivals, for example: Harvest Moon Festival, October 12 from 5 – 8 p.m. at Swaim Park (7650 Cooper Road; cincinnatimontgomeryohio.org/event/harvest-moon-festival), enjoy crafts, face painting, funnel cakes, old-fashioned games, Sweet Maize Corn and more; or Symmes Township Fall Festival October 4 from 5 – 9 p.m. at Symmes Park (9323 Union Cemetery Road, Symmes Township, symmestownship.org/news/entry/fall-festival-returns-228) and get in the fall spirit with hayrides, a hay maze, pony rides, petting zoo, pumpkin patch, a “haunted trail” plus much more!

Liberty Center | 7100 Foundry Row Liberty Township | 513-644-0901
Play in the green space and watch the trains; and then go inside to eat and play in the Foundry area by the food court. Finish your day at the Midpointe Library, (right inside the mall) and let the kids run wild in the indoor Cincinnati Children’s Discovery Center.

Cincinnati Art Museum | 953 Eden Park Drive, Cincinnati | 513-721-2787
Parking is free, plus it’s free to attend a story or create an art project at the Rosenthal Education Center – can’t get any better than that!

Air Force Museum  | 1100 Spaatz St., Wright-Patterson AFB | 937-255-3286 
You can spend an entire day at the Air Force Museum! Explore the bunkers and learn about aviation, let the kids walk in the original Air Force One and so much more!

Crossroads Community Church | 3500 Madison Road, Cincinnati | 513-731-7400
The lobby is open to the public, plus there are tables to eat and work at as well a play area for the kids. Grown-ups – there’s free coffee, too!

IKEA |9500 IKEA Way, West Chester | 888-888-4532
A little window shopping never hurt anyone! Browse around for fun household items or plan out your dream kitchen while the kids play in Smaland. Kids can also play in the cafe area, and there’s free coffee, too! 


Susie lives in the northern suburbs of Cincinnati with her husband and three kids. She has a 5-year-old, 3-year-old and a 14 month baby! Together, they like to explore new things in Cincinnati as well as favorite places like Summit Park and Sharon Woods. Susie is a former high school teacher and now a stay-at-home mom. She also enjoys running, being outside, spending time with family and friends, road tripping, participating in her church's activities and drinking coffee.

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