For most of us, our kids are out of school for the summer break. Two and a half months of “I am bored.” “I am hungry.” “There is nothing to do around here.” And by the end for the first week of break, as parents, we are checking the calendar to see many more days we have left of break.
As a parent myself, I can totally relate to the above scenario. I have three kids, ages 10 and under, so believe me when I say understand your pain. I try to find as many “free” or “inexpensive” things for my kids to do during the summer. There are plenty of things to do without breaking the bank.
What’s on your list of things to do this Summer?
Harkins Movie Theater offers “Summer Movie Fun.” It’s ten movies, for ten weeks, for $5.00 (for the whole summer), yes, you read that correctly. A $5.00 movie pass gets you into ten movies. Disclaimer the movies are not new releases, typically, they are movies that came out in the last three to four years, but hey, the kids won’t care. They just want popcorn and candy and to get out of the house.
Regal Movie Theater offers a similar program, Regal Summer Movie Express. $1.00 for each movie playing on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings, lasting ten weeks as well. Unlike, Harkins, Regal plays two movies each week, including some pretty recently released flicks. Either theater is a great option for something to get everyone out of the house and staying cool.
Let’s not forget about the Van Buren Drive-In Theatre. Pile up the car and catch a flick from the comfort of your car or camping chair. Drive-in theaters are a dying breed, and we have in our backyard. What a great experience for kids, watching movies outdoors.
Going to the Park
Riverside and the surrounding areas feature some great parks ranging from parks with pools to splash pads. There is something for all ages. Throw on your swimsuit, sunscreen, and a hat, and enjoy the day. There are six splash pads throughout Riverside. What’s a Splash Pad, you ask? It’s a water park-ish place that is usually free of charge, and the kids can run through water and play. Goal: wear them out, so they take a great nap. For a complete list of Splash Pads in Riverside, click here. Most are open daily from 11 am to 5 pm, so even if you work during the week, you can still enjoy the water on the weekends.
Pack a picnic lunch and enjoy a beautiful scenery around Fair Mount Park. The park is surrounded by ponds that are usually stocked with fish.
Riverside features seven sparkling pools throughout the city. Most can be used for free of charge during certain hours. The city does offer swim lessons as well for all ages teaming up with Kaiser Permanente to provide scholarships to low-income families and the disabled. Their goal is to help residents stay cool and fit during the hot summer months. Click here for a full list of pools in the Riverside area.
Looking for a little more splish and splash, then check out the Cove Waterpark. The tickets run $65 for unlimited visits for the season (May 27-Sept. 2, 2019) and you have access to The Dropzone (located in Perris) and the Cove Water Parks. For an additional fee, they offer various summer camps. Check out all the details here.
Something for the Older Kids to Do
Summer Break is a great time for the older kids to a job. However, with all the new regulations, it’s hard to find a company that will hire you if you are under 18 years of age. Before getting my first job, I volunteered at the local hospital under their VolunTEEN program. Desert Regional Medical Center and its sister hospitals offer this program for Riverside and the surrounding areas.
Volunteering and giving back to the community can be very fulfilling and teaches a person to care for others. To think beyond themselves. Here is a link to a great site full of other opportunities in Riverside.
Be sure to hike to the top of Mt. Rubidoux and check out the glorious views of Riverside. Or stroll through the California Citrus State Historic Park and smell all the fragrant orange blossoms. A short drive up the road will take you to the breath-taking Whitewater Preserve. You will find a beautiful Oasis in the middle of the desert. You will not be disappointed.
Visiting a Museum
Want to beat the summer heat, check out the great museums around town. Young or old, the March Airfield Museum is sure to be a family favorite. The museum is filled with old planes and war artifacts; there is something for everyone, including a flight simulator. How about walking around the stunning Mission Inn Museum and admiring all the architecture. Need something a little more kid-friendly, check out the Jurupa Mountains Discovery Center. Filled with fossils, crystals, and minerals, see the dinosaurs, giant tortoises and butterfly garden. Some areas are free to explore while others require a small fee.
As you can see, there is something for everyone to do during Summer Break, so no one is left feeling bored! I encourage you to get out there and explore your very own city or the ones nearby. You and our family will not be disappointed.