|Anna’s annual list of Cheap or Free Family Fun in Tulsa
Below is a list that Anna America puts together every year for those who I think might be looking to entertain a kid or two this summer— please feel free to pass along to anyone else who might be interested.
(If you do pass on or post somewhere, please credit Anna as the source, and include the facebook link — http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cheap-or-Free-Family-Fun-in-Tulsa/94733445498 – so users can find updates, make comments or additions, etc. If you haven’t “liked” the page, you should go do it, too, so YOU will see any updates.)
Anna encourages you to always check in advance before making a trek someplace, as details may change from what she’s gathered on the internet.
Anna sends this out via email as well, so message her at email@example.com if you’d like to be added to her distribution list.
Here’s hoping everyone has a fun, safe and CHEAP summer!
Anna’s 2011 List of Cheap or Free Family Fun in Tulsa
Tulsa Library summer reading program, “One World. Many Stories.”
Go into any library and sign up, and then get prizes and coupons for free things for reading certain number of books over the summer (younger children can be read to). We have done it since age 2, and they have programs up through teens. Kickoff is Saturday, May 21st, with a special party at the Tulsa Zoo. Children and teens that come to the Tulsa Zoo and sign-up for Summer Reading between 9 am and 12pm that day will receive free admission. There are also TONS of other library activities going on this summer – too many to list, but you can find more info about the Summer reading program at this link, and a schedule starts on Page 10 of the file:http://www.tulsalibrary.org/eventguide/events/SRP_EventGuide_11_ch.pdf.
Storytime in the Park
Thursday s– May 26; June 2, 9, 16, 23, at 10 a.m, at QuikTrip Plaza at River Parks, 41st and Riverside. Join the free Reading Roadshow for stories, songs and activities in the park. Please bring a blanket or lawn chair. The series will kick off May 26 with a guest performance by the Sugar Free Allstars.
Free Reading Reward Program – Barnes & Noble, grades 1-6
Fun and easy way for kids to earn free books. They simply read any eight books — library books, books borrowed from friends or books bought at Barnes & Noble — track them in the downloadable “passport” and bring in the passport to a Barnes & Noble bookstore to get a free book. For more information and to download and print a Passport, an Activity Kit or an Educator’s Kit,http://www.barnesandnoble.com/summerreading/
SUMMER MOVIE PROGRAMS
Cinemark Theater Summer Movie Club
Wednesdays at 10 am at Cinemark, 6808 S. Memorial.
*All 10 movies can be purchased in advance for $5.00, or can be purchased separately at the box office for $1.00 per show. For more info:http://www.cinemark.com/images/smc2011/SMC2011_29.jpg
FREE SUMMER MUSIC
Free concerts held Tuesday nights outside at the River Parks Festival Amphitheater, 2100 S. Jackson. All concerts begin at 8 p.m. For more info: http://www.starlightbands.net/
Broken Arrow Tuesdays in Central Park Outdoor concerts
All concerts are held starting at 7 p.m. at Central Park, 1500 South Main, in downtown Broken Arrow. The concerts are free and open to the public.
Summer’s 5th Night at Utica Square
Every Thursday through August, 7-9 pm. Utica Square’s summer concert series serves up everything from jazz to rock to country. There’s something different every Thursday and best of all, it’s free! Pack a picnic or dine at one of our great restaurants as you unwind to your favorite local bands. Put on your dancing shoes, catch up with family and friends and win great prizes like Utica Square gift certificates and merchandise from Utica Square merchants.
First Friday Concert Series – LaFortune Park
Free. Bring your favorite lawn chair or blanket and sit back and relax while local bands present family friendly music from all genres. Located in the Gardens of LaFortune Park (off 51st Street, just west of Hudson), 7-9 pm. http://www.parks.tulsacounty.org/
Chandler Park Sunset Concert Series
Free. Bring your favorite lawn chair or blanket and sit back and relax while local bands present family friendly music from all genres. Located at Chandler Park 6500 W. 21st Street., 7-9 pm.
RiverWalk Summer Concert Series
Free, at the RiverWalk Crossing in Jenks. 8-11 pm. For info, http://www.riverwalkcrossingjenks.com/events/upcoming/
Gilcrease Third Tuesday Jazz
Visit Gilcrease Museum and hear local legends perform America’s Music. Live Jazz in the Vista Room from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., with museum galleries remaining open until 8:00 p.m. Free with admission. A buffet dinner is available from The Restaurant at Gilcrease for an additional $5 per person.
And the Shops at Seville at 101st and Yale is doing their summer free concert series Thursdays, 7-9 pm, but I couldn’t find their schedule online. It is usually the same mix of bands you see at the other free concert series (Mid Life Crisis, etc.)
Anna’s annual list of Cheap or Free Family Fun in Tulsa
CITY OF TULSA PARKS PROGRAMS
Unless otherwise noted, call 596-PARK (7275) for information or to register.
Admission fees and hours vary. The 5 pools scheduled to open this summer are:
Beach Bash — official pool opening. June 4, noon-3pm, at McClure Park Pool (7440 E. 7th St.) Kick off the Summer Pool season with music, pool games and more. Admission is free!
Tennis in the Parks – June 6-July 23 at Hicks, Lacy, Reed and Whiteside parks.
Practice matches in June, and League play in July in four divisions for ages 6 through 18. Cost varies. includes t-shirt and awards. For info: http://www.cityoftulsa.org/media/163326/tennis%20in%20the%20parks%20flyer%202011.pdf .
Summer Day Camps
June 6th-August 12th. Registration has already begun. Ages 6-11. At various Community Centers. Rates vary. Includes traditional day camps and art and other specialty camps. For more information:http://www.cityoftulsa.org/culture–recreation/tulsa-parks/community-centers/day-camps.aspx.
Other Tulsa Park events include classes in Martial Arts, Soccer, T-Ball, Gymnastics, Volleyball, Aerobics, Yoga, Pilates, Swim Lessons, and Dance. Visit www.TulsaParks.org for more info.
Oxley Nature Center
In Mohawk Park – free. One of my favorite places in Tulsa! (Note you will have to pay a $2 parking fee for Mohawk on weekends if you aren’t a Zoo Friends member.)
With more than 9 miles of trails covering 804 acres, the Mary K. Oxley Nature Center at Mohawk Park is one of Tulsa’s treasures. The gates open daily (except City holidays) at 8 a.m. and close at 5 p.m., although the trails are open as early as 7 a.m. or as late as 9 p.m. to hikers who park outside the gates.
Visitors may pick up maps and trail information at the Oxley-Yetter Interpretive Building 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Mon.-Sat. and 12 noon-4:30 p.m. on Sunday. The Interpretive Building houses inter-active, hands-on exhibits explaining the local natural history. Gift shop, restrooms, drinking water and a classroom are also available. For more information, call 669-6644 or go tohttp://www.oxleynaturecenter.org/.
Redbud Valley Nature Preserve
More wild that Oxley, but wonderful spot for a hike! Free. Natural diversity is protected at Redbud Valley Nature Preserve. Located on North 161st East Avenue about 3.8 miles north of I-44, Redbud Valley Nature Preserve protects 220+ acres of unique plant and animal life. The rugged one-mile trail is open to hikers only when the gates are open: Wed.-Sun., 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. The Barclay Visitor Center is open 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Pets are not permitted. The Preserve is closed every Monday and Tuesday, and most holidays. For more information, call 669-6460 or visit http://www.cityoftulsa.org/culture–recreation/tulsa-parks/community-centers/oxley-nature-center-and-redbud-valley/redbud-valley-nature-preserve.aspx.
Tulsa County Parks also has swimming pools, summer camps and other programming at LaFortune (51st & Yale) http://www.parks.tulsacounty.org/LaFortune.aspx; O’Brien, 6149 N. Lewis Ave.http://www.parks.tulsacounty.org/Obrien.aspx, and Chandler, 6500 West 21st St., http://sites.google.com/site/chandlerparktulsa/.
Second Saturday at RiverWalk Crossing in Jenks, starting May 14
Free, 1 pm-10 am. Local artisans and live entertainment/music. Second Saturday of the month – May 14, June 11, July 19, Aug. 13
Art Rocks Riverside, Starting May 15
1-10 pm. Art Rocks Riverside is a free local art festival two Sundays a month from May through October 2011. Hosted by the Blue Rose Cafe & Elwoods at 19th and Riverside. Come and enjoy local art, great music, and good vibes! First event is May 15—check their facebook page for upcoming dates: http://www.facebook.com/artrocksriverside.
Tulsa Mayfest, May 19-22
Downtown Tulsa, (11 am-11 pm Thursday-Saturday, and 11 am-6 pm Sunday). Free Family-oriented outdoor tribute to the arts, with an array of dance and music performances in addition to the many visual arts booths and four indoor galleries (including a Youth Gallery at the PAC) and a KidZone sponsored by St. Francis and Williams at the park at 6th and Main. KidZone features hands-on activities for children of all ages as well as family-friendly entertainment. For a schedule of KidZone entertainment, go here: http://www.tulsamayfest.org/content.cfm?id=3. Dozens of music acts will perform on three stages—see schedule here: http://www.tulsamayfest.org/content.cfm?ID=45&pageParentIDNew=2. For listing of exhibitors and performers or other information, go to http://www.tulsamayfest.org/
7th Annual Tulsa ArtCar Weekend, May 26-29
You’ve probably seen the very cool, funky cars driving around town when this festival is in town, but head on down to Brady Arts District to see them all in one place. Sponsored by Living Arts of Tulsa, Tulsa ArtCar weekend is a 4-day event that invites local and national artists to create their own drivable artwork and share it with the Tulsa Community. There is usually a parade, but they don’t have the time listed on their website—check http://www.livingarts.org/artcar.htm for details.
Gilcrease Museum-KIDS DIG BOOKS: Wilderness Adventure
FREE. Fridays, noon-1 pm. June 3, 10, 17 & 21; July 1, 8, 15, 22 & 29, For ages 3–6, accompanied by caregiver.
Set in the Kids’ Site among the trappings of mountain men, join us as we listen to stories of wilderness adventures, hiking, canoeing, making trails, and building a log cabin. Also, kids will learn about animals that live in the wild. Afterwards, they will create their own work of art based on the stories they have heard. Presented in collaboration with the Tulsa City-County Library Children’s Department. Advanced registration is required. For info, call 596-2774, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gilcrease-MINI MASTERS: Art Parts II- What Makes Up Art (in May) and Patterns in Art and Artifacts (in June & July)
FREE. 10-11 am. May 12, 13, 19 & 20; June 3, 7, 10, 14, 17, 21, 24 & 28; July 1, 5, 8 & 12, 15, 19, 22, 26 & 29, For ages 3–6, accompanied by caregiver.
Continue the investigation in the different elements that make up art. Learn about line, shape, color, texture, form, contrast and more. Children will look at a variety of art techniques as they explore the galleries learning what makes art. They will apply what they have learned to make their own work of art. Space is limited. Reservations are required. For reservations and information, call 596-2774, or email email@example.com.
Saturdays, June 4 & 18; July 2 & 16, 1 pm
Free. For ages 7-12, who must be accompanied by an adult. Have fun making friends with a work of art. It takes time to get to know someone; the same is true for artwork. Each session will last half an hour in the galleries, concentrating on one piece which will include sketching activities. Families will learn how to get acquainted with a work of art and learn ways to “make friends” with other artwork they see. Afterwards, families will create their own work of art that relates to the new “friend” they just made. The featured art piece will be introduced at the beginning of each class. Art Encounters is a program for children and adults to participate in together. Space is limited and advanced registration is encouraged. To register, call (918) 596-2774, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gilcrease-Open Studio for Adult Artists
This one is for adults – but we need our creative time, too! Local artists are invited to attend a new studio initiative at the museum. Louise Higgs, consulting artist, will be on hand to oversee a directed experience of either plein air painting or studio work, dependent on the weather and group interest of those attending. Participants should bring their own supplies. 4-7 pm on May 17 and 9:30 am-12:30 pm on June 4 & 25 and July 16 & 30. For additional information, please call (918) 596-2737, or e-mail email@example.com.
Also at Gilcrease, if you haven’t tried it, I highly recommend the Creative Learning Center: http://www.gilcrease.org/CreativeLearningCenter.aspx
It’s a free art center with all kinds of activities available to the kids. They can make and take projects using painting, clay, weaving, etc. And of course the grounds are gorgeous and always worth a stroll!
Gilcrease offers free admission to all visitors on the first Tuesday of each month (“TU TUesday”). For more information on any of the programs or the museum’s collection, see www.gilcrease.org
Philbrook Museum-Free 2nd Saturday
Every 2nd Saturday of the month is Free Family Day. Drop in anytime from 10:30 am – 4 pm. Experiment with fun materials to make hands-on art projects, go on a scavenger hunt, take a family-friendly tour of the museum, and so much more on this day specifically for families.
Thanks to Heyman Family Adventures in Art. This program has made my 8-year-old daughter hyper-aware of the calendar – I am amazed that she ALWAYS knows when it is the 2nd Saturday. http://philbrook.org/
Brady Arts District First Friday Art Crawl
On the first Friday evening of each month, head on down to the Brady Arts District just north of downtown. Starting at around 5:30, galleries open their doors for exhibits, new shows, art demonstrations, and more. The demonstrations are especially interesting to kids – what kid doesn’t see glassblowers at the Tulsa Glassblowing Studio and start imagining what she could do with a blowtorch?
A variety of local Farmers Markets offer fresh local produce, crafts, plants, herbs and more. Most Markets run May through October. Great place to wander around with the kids, and one of the few where you can actually buy them a healthy snack! I listed some popular ones below, but the Tulsa World compiled a list of even more here: http://www.tulsaworld.com/scene/article.aspx?subjectid=39&articleid=20100407_39_D1_Pickon353144
Cherry Street Farmers Market
15th Street between Quaker & Rockford, Saturdays, 7 am-11 am.
Brookside Farmers Market
41st & Peoria, Wednesdays, 8 am-noon.
Pearl District Farmers Market
6th Street and Peoria Avenue, Thursdays, 4-7 pm
Downtown Tulsa Farmers’ Market
3rd & Boston, Williams Green, Tuesdays, 10:30 am -2 pm
North Tulsa Farmers Market
2620 E. 56th St. North, Saturdays, 8:30am-12:30pm, starts first week of June.
Owasso Farmers Market
Owasso YMCA, 8300 Owasso Expressway, in Owasso just off U.S. 169, Wednesdays, 7 am-11 am & Saturdays, 8 am-noon.
Broken Arrow Farmers Market
418 South Main St., Tuesdays, 4:30-8 pm, Saturdays, 8 am-1 pm.
FESTIVALS AND OTHER FUN
Broken Arrow Rooster Days, May 12-15
Central Park, BA, (11 am-11 pm Thursday-Saturday, and 11 am-6 pm Sunday). Fun, family-oriented festival –rides, entertainment, food and more. Free admission. http://www.roosterdaysfestival.com/
Tulsa County Salutes Armed Forces Day-Haikey Creek Park, May 21
Tulsa County will honor its military community on Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 21, from 10am-6pm “Tulsa County Salutes Armed Forces Day” will be held at Haikey Creek Park, 11327 S. Garnett. Event will include live music, arts & crafts vendors, food and a car show.
Backwoods Bash Music & Camping Festival, May 27-30
Old Walnut Creek State Park on Keystone Lake. $25 for entire weekend – kids 12 & under are free. Camp out and listen to music near Keystone Lake. Proceeds for to Make a Difference Foundation. Walnut Creek State Park on Keystone Lake. Bands include Dirtfoot, Mountain Sprout, Red Dirt Rangers, Don Chani, The Moai Broadcast, Paul Benjaman Band, Sam and the Stylees and many more.! For a complete lineup, go to www.backwoodsbash.com
Bartlesville’s SunFest, June 3-5
“Oklahoma’s Biggest Outdoor Picnic” returns for a long weekend with its trademark combination of: A relaxed, family picnic atmosphere, quality, cost-free entertainment, a diverse range of arts and crafts, creative, supervised activities for children, terrific food in abundant variety, and an eye-popping car show. This free premier arts & entertainment festival – now in its 29th year – is held in Sooner Park located at Madison Boulevard and Tuxedo Avenue in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Parking is available in several lots near the park. For information: http://www.bartlesvillesunfest.org/tradition.htm
Asian-American Festival, June 4
FREE. 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 5, at Martin Regional Library, 2601 S. Garnett Road. Celebrate and learn about the customs and traditions of Asian-Americans . Explore the colorful cultures of China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and other countries in Asia. The festival kicks off at 10:45 a.m. with a vibrant Dragon Dance, and includes a kite demonstration by the Tulsa Wind Riders Kite Club, martial arts demonstrations, traditional dance presentations, bamboo flute music, a Japanese tea ceremony, origami and children’s activities. Local martial arts instructors and their students will demonstrate kung fu, karate, tae kwon do and other traditional Asian disciplines throughout the day under a big tent outside in the back of the library. Students from Ten Tigers Kung Fu, Tulsa Arnis Club and Shikara Ashi Te Ryu are scheduled to perform.
Numerous activities and presentations are scheduled indoors throughout the festival, including interactive educational booths featuring crafts for kids, temporary tattoos, name translation, henna painting and origami instruction. The festival also features authentic arts and crafts booths. Food concession is provided by India Palace. More info:http://www.tulsalibrary.org/blogs/index.php/news/2011/05/05/tulsa-city-county-library-s-asian-american-festival-set-for-june-4
Tulsa Tough, June 10-12
A three-day cycling festival designed to promote fitness and healthy lifestyles while showcasing the beautiful city of Tulsa. Tulsa Tough offers events and spectating opportunities for everyone with professional-level races, recreational and tour rides, kids and youth activities, live music and vendors in one action packed weekend. For more information, go to http://www.tulsatough.com/
Glenpool Black Gold Days, June 16-18
This annual festival celebrates the discovery of the Glenn Pool oil field in 1905. Food, crafts, music, games and activities and more. For more information, call 322-3505 or visithttp://www.glenpoolchamber.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=65&Itemid=129.
Bixby Green Corn Festival, June 23-25
Charley Young Park in downtown Bixby (southeast of `15st and Memorial). A kick back to the good old fashioned family oriented picnics. The annual festival (held on the 4th Thursday, Friday and Saturday of June) features great music, arts and crafts, food, bingo, carnival and great games and contests for the young and young at heart. A talent show to highlight area youth is held on Friday at the Community Center and the annual Green Corn Parade entertains the masses on Saturday morning.http://bixbyoptimist.org/green-corn-festival
Blue Bell Broken Arrow Ice Cream Plant- Taste of Summer, June 25
8201 E. Hwy 51, Broken Arrow, 9 am–3 pm. Love ice cream? You gotta go! The annual Community Open House hosted by one of Broken Arrow’s favorite and best-known businesses. ALL the ice cream you can eat. Jupiter Jump for the kids, ice cream eating contest, live entertainment, plant tours and much more. $5 admission; 6 and under are freeCall 258-5100 for information. (Blue Bell also does tours year-round, with free ice cream tasting—it’s a fun way to cool off for a few hours with the kids—call for more info.)
Woolaroc Kidsfest, June 25-26
One of my favorite kid festivals. 10 am-5 pm — Regular Woolaroc admission (adults $8, over 65 $6 and children 11 and under are FREE) at the great family museum/wildlife sanctuary/ranch southwest of Bartlesville.
Kidsfest features events, games, crafts and entertainment presented on the Woolaroc grounds where visitors can enjoy all of the activities in the rustic outdoor environment, along with the natural beauty of the Osage Hills, the historic art and artifacts in the Woolaroc Museum and the animals on the Wildlife Preserve. Kids can participate in a variety of activities, such as pony rides, wagon rides, treasure dig, face painting, Carpenter’s corner, tattoos, beaded necklaces, Indian head bands, native sand art, rock painting, bean bag games, and lots of nature crafts. Our living history booths will include horseshoeing, saddle & boot makers, bridle, bit and spur makers, woodcarvers, silversmiths, flint knapping, rope making, black-smithing, old west re-enactors and lots more. More info and directions to Woolaroc at: http://www.woolaroc.org/
ONEOK FreedomFest ’11, July 4
Annual July 4th celebration held at the River West Festival Park, 19th & Riverside Drive, and Veterans Park featuring fireworks, entertainment, activities, food & beverages. Fireworks are shot from the 21st Street Bridge at approximately 9:30 p.m.
Contact River Parks at (918) 596-2001 for more details
Porter Peach Festival, July 14-16
Mmmmmm! It’s a bit of a drive, but c’mon, for fresh Porter peaches and ice cream, it’s worth it! Downtown Porter. Rodeo, music, arts, 5k run, carnival rides, free peaches and cream!
For more information, http://www.porterpeachfestivals.com/ or 694-9314.
Free Family Fishing Clinics
The Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation hosts free family fishing clinics at the Zebco casting pond, located adjacent to the Oklahoma Aquarium in Jenks. The two-hour clinics begin at 6:30 p.m. and conclude with fishing in the small pond, which is regularly stocked with good-sized channel catfish, which the novice anglers can even take home for the dinner table. Equipment and bait is provided. Clinics are open to all ages, not just children, but kids 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult.
Here’s the schedule for this year: May 23, 24, 25 & 26; June 1, 2, 6, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 20, 21, 22, 23, 27, 28, 29, 30; July 12, 14, 19, 21, 26, 28; Aug. 2, 4, 11. Pre-registration is required — to register call the Wildlife Department’s Jenks office at (918) 299-2334 or go tohttp://www.wildlifedepartment.com/aquated2.htm .
Tulsa Drillers baseball
The national pasttime and a good way to spend a few summer hours. If you haven’t been to the downtown ONEOK field yet, take yourself out to the ball park! ! It is awesome, and SO much more fun than the old venue. There is a playground for younger kids, as well as activities like a big slide and inflatables for older kids. Tickets are cheap and there are always specials and giveaways. For a list of various promotions, go here:
A couple of promotion highlights: Tuesdays are Two Dollar Tuesdays ($2 lawn tickets and various $2 concessions). On Sundays, the first 500 kids 12 & under get a free meal and can go on the field for a free clinic.
And even if you don’t feel like watching the game, be sure to check the list for one of the Friday night home games that will feature fireworks after the games – they put on really impressive shows (better than many 4th of July shows) and you can join the hundreds of people who congregate in the nearby area to watch. And I will say it again — fireworks are WAY cooler with the downtown skyline in the background!
Blue Hole swimming hole, east of Salina
For a lot of our (let’s admit it, a little bit pampered) kids, this will make them feel like they have stepped into a Mark Twain novel. Old-fashioned family-operated swimming hole fed by 3 springs of VERY cold, clear water. $5 per car entry. Bring a picnic or get food from the concession stand. Kids can float and swim, catch minnows, or, for the more bold, jump off the “cliff” into the deepest part. They also have campsites and cabins, but I’ve only gone for the day. No alcohol. Warning – no “real” bathrooms (port-a-Johns only) so if you are squeamish, come prepared with wipes, sanitizer, and easy to change clothes for the drive home. It’s about an hour drive from Tulsa. To get there, take 412 East from Tulsa to Highway 69, go North on 69 to Chouteau and then to Pryor. At the stop light for Highway 20 in Pryor, go right (East) to Salina. In Salina, go to the 4 way stop sign and go straight for 7 miles. Blue Hole is on the right. For information, call 918-434-5507 or visit http://www.wix.com/bluehole/blue-hole.
Pick Your Own Produce
Since the kids will be feeling like real Okies after spending some time at the Blue Hole, it’s time to take them berry pickin’. (Make sure to get them a straw hat and cut offs for the full effect.) There are a bunch of pick-your-own berry farms in the Green Country area, where kids can pick (and maybe eat a few along the way) blueberries, blackberries, and other produce. Many of them also have activities like petting zoos or hayrides. Harvest times will vary with the weather each year, so call ahead to any place you are thinking of visiting. Here is a link to a bunch of farms:http://www.pickyourown.org/OK.htm, plus a good Tulsa World story from last year:http://www.tulsaworld.com/scene/article.aspx?subjectid=370&articleid=20100609_39_D1_DonHan688008.
Bartlesville Kiddie Park
A fun and cheap park for younger kids (probably best up to age 7 or 8). Some of the rides are so mild that even very young toddlers can ride them safely. No admission charge and ride tickets are 25 cents — almost all rides are just one ticket, so you can have a lot of fun for only a few bucks. Last time I went, concessions were good “fair fare” and cheap — $1 cotton candy, 75 cent snowcones, etc. A few things adults could ride, plus there are plenty of benches to sit on and watch the kids. There also were wandering clowns, face painting, etc. Good old-fashioned summer fun!
It’s open through the summer, only in the evening: Fridays and Saturday evenings through May, then open Tues-Thurs 7:00 pm – 9:30 pm; Fri-Sat 7:00 pm -10:00 pm. Closed Sundays, Mondays & the 4th of July. If you want to make it the quintessential summer date — go early enough to stop at the Bartlesville Sonic on the way — you pass it on your way to the Park, and it’s the only Sonic I’ve seen with a big outdoor playground.
It is located at 215 N. Cherokee Ave. in Johnstone Park. For info or directions, go to http://kiddiepark.net/ .
Get a free admission for a child for going to the dentist…print out the form here and get dentist to sign. http://www.okaquarium.org/userFiles/DentalCertificatePrint.pdf
Kaleidoscope Kids Museum
Located on the corner of 62nd and Sheridan, at the back of the parking lot on the lower level. I’ve never gone, so I am basing this on their webpage. They say: “Kaleidoscope Children’s Museum features a pint-size Kid’s City where your child can be a waitress, a barber, a doctor, a postal worker, or even a rescue hero at the fireman’s pole! You won’t want to miss a chance to race your children on our 2 GIANT rock walls! Be careful though…you may be thrown in our kid size jail! If you’re a spectacular detective, you may be able to use our magnifying glasses to find some of the many items that are hidden all throughout the museum! Check out our many features, where kids will find unending excitement in our 13,000-square feet of fun!” Home page says admission is $6 (and includes pizza?!) although info is different on other pages–so I’d suggest calling ahead. For more info, call 918-340-5252 or go to www.kaleidoscopecm.com
Kids can bowl free all summer long at several Tulsa –area bowling alleys. Go to the website and register each child, and get coupons emailed for 2 free games every day all summer long!
Andy Bs, 8711 S Lewis Ave. https://www.kidsbowlfree.com/center.php?alley_id=5144
Broken Arrow Lanes, 4701 S. Elm Place: https://www.kidsbowlfree.com/center.php?alley_id=3691
For Teens – Youth Services of Tulsa Coffee House
Coffee House is a place to hang out, visit with friends and enjoy being a teen. Come on by any Saturday, bring your friends and relax at the YST Coffee House. Same time, same place: Every Saturday night, 7-11 pm, 311 S. Madison (1/2 mile West of Peoria on 3rd St). The YST Coffee House has Wi-Fi! So, bring your personal connection devices and etc.
with you to the Coffee House while you enjoy your free coffee and cappuccino donated by Quik Trip.http://www.yst.org/yst/Coffee_House.asp?SnID=2
Free Kids Workshops – Home Depot.
This is at 9 am on the first Saturday of the month…they can build all kinds of cool projects, with all supplies provided free. They also get a little apron and goggles. For ages 5-12. At all Home Depots. See upcoming projects here: http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ContentView?pn=Kids_Workshops&langId=-1&storeId=10051.
Free Kids Workshop at Lowes
Just like Home Depot except at Lowes — Saturdays at 10 am. Both stores do this year-round.
River Parks -Wednesday Night Bike Rides
Each Wednesday during daylight savings time, upwards of 300 cyclists converge at 23rd and S. Jackson on the west side of the Arkansas River. This unsponsored, social ride attracts cyclists of all skill levels. Some ride a 16-mile route that includes the Sand Springs “Katy” Trail. Others ride more than 30 miles. Participants may park at the River West Festival Park (site of Oktoberfest). Public restrooms at the amphitheatre will be open from 4:30 p.m. to approx. 9:30 p.m. Groups form as early as 4:30 p.m. The largest group leaves around 5:30 p.m. See you there! Contact River Parks at 596-2001 for more details
Kids Eat Free
After all this fun, you’ll probably be too tired out to cook. Just about every day there’s SOME place that will feed your kids for free. Several different websites keep up with the changing restaurant deals, including which eatery has deals for kids each day. Here are three different sites, which overlap some, but each seems to have at least a few unique listings: Tulsa Restaurant Deals, http://tulsarestaurantdeals.com/cheap-deals-by-age/kids; Kids Eat Free in Tulsa, http://www.kidseatfor.com/metro/ok/tulsa/; and My Kids Eat Free, http://mykidseatfree.com/states/Oklahoma_City_Results.asp. (The latter two you can plug in different locations to find cheap eats when on the road, too.)
A great reference if you are looking for a summer camp, the Tulsa Kids Summer Camp and Activities Guide: http://tulsakids.com/?q=guides-and-directories%2F2011-summer-camps-activities-guide
Here is a good website with lots of local events: http://tulsaevents.com/events.php
The Tulsa Convention and Visitor’s Bureau maintains a calendar that includes things like what’s showing at the PAC or the Tulsa Fairgrounds: http://www.visittulsa.com/events/11/calendar
And Tasha Does Tulsa offers not only listings of what’s going on each week in Tulsa, but fun commentary: http://www.tashadoestulsa.com/
And a few good sites for summer activities, games, crafts, etc.:
Stuck at home and kids are bored? (The second part of that equation is pretty much a given after the first few weeks.) Here are a few summertime crafts you can do at home with things you probably have around the house.
Kool-Aid Play Dough
Mix all dry ingredients together. Add water and oil and stir. Knead with hands when mixture is cool. Store in air-tight container. This recipe lasts for several months.
“I Spy” water bottles
Use rice, birdseed or sand to fill the water bottle about 3/4 of the way up and add a bunch of small trickets (buttons, doll shoe, jingle bell, coins, earring, etc.) Super glue the top on to keep it from opening up. Make a label of everything included and attach it to the bottle neck with a ribbon – kids can spend hours looking for all the items. I had little label to tie to the top with everything they neede to find.
(use for crafts, to make necklaces, glue on paper for designs)
1. Pour 1/8 cup of rubbing alcohol (or ¼ cup vinegar) into a plastic resealable bag
2. Add a few drops of food coloring to the plastic bag
3. Add ½ lb of dry pasta to the plastic bag
4. Seal the bag and shake, making sure that the past gets coated with coloring
5. Set out sheets of wax paper
6. Put on rubber gloves
7. Remove the past from the plastic bags and place on the wax paper to dry
8. Repeat steps 1 through 7 for each color
9. Make sure pasta is completely dry befor storing in containers/plastic bags
1part corn starch 1 part water , few drops of food coloring (more if you want brighter colors)… I use the platic cups we get at resturaunts to mix it in. the paint brushes you get to paint on walls work better (get 1” and 1/2″ ones) When the paint dries it looks really cool… but when you are tired of it just sweep it away. If it leaves a slight stain don’t worry the sun will fade it away in a day. It also comes off clothes easy. My kids can paint for hrs… let them paint rocks, flower pots, even the house. You can put the paint in shallow pans to let them dip their feet in and make foot prints… really cute
This is the most basic and time tested dough mixture. First mix all the ingredients together. Next knead the dough for at least 10 minutes. The kneading will make the dough smooth and shinny. Floor your hand to prevent the dough from sticking. This dough can be baked in a low (250 degree) oven and then painted. Spray with a varnish for added shine.
Will fill a gallon milk jug and will store indefinitely if kept cool.