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Experience museums, parks, movies, restaurants and pools at these FREE Cincinnati activities near you.

Nowadays, you don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a great experience. Cincinnati has you in mind when it comes to doing more, for less. Especially if you are making it a family affair, or even a cute first date. Here is a list of FREE Cincinnati activities to do. See what’s happening on each day of the week, then at the bottom see what is free all day, every day! The information in this article is as current as of the publication date. Readers are encouraged to confirm the information before acting.

Text “VOBC” to 797979 to receive these weekly happenings and free things to do straight to your phone.
Check out these Black Cincinnati events you don’t want to miss.

 

Monday

Free Movies for Kids
Esquire, Mariemont or Kenwood Movie Theater
June 3 – July 31
10:30 a.m.
On these days, kids and their guardians can enjoy movies. Seating is first come, first served. Kids will be able to enjoy movies like Smallfoot, Iron Giant, Teen Titans Go, Storks, and more.

 

Basketball Competition
Melrose YMCA
5:30 p.m.
Free Entry
Show off your skills and signup for fun pickup games, leagues, 3-point contests and more. Offered through August.

 

Buffalo Joe’s – Kids eat free with the purchase of an adult entrée.

 

Buffalo Wings & Rings – Kids eat free.

 

Frisch’s – Get 1 free kids meal per adult purchase of $6.98.

 

Here are inspiring African American movies your kids will want to see. 

 

Tuesday


Pop Up Play: Youngster Yoga

Washington Park
11 a.m.
Take your mini-yogis to the park for a kid’s yoga class. Take your own mat or use one of the ones provided. Mats are first-come, first-served.

 

Moe’s Southwest Grill – Get 1 free kids meal per paying adult from 4 p.m. to close.

 

Ruby Tuesday – Get 1 free kid’s meal with each adult entrée 5 p.m. – close.

 

Smale Mind & Body: Ragga Fit
Smale park
6 p.m.
Combines cardiovascular movements with modern music and dances. Improves and develops muscle memory while maintaining a healthy heart.

 

Fountain Feud
Fountain Square
7 p.m.
Compete in trivia Family Feud style for gift card prizes. The bar opens at 6 p.m.

 

Bob Evans –Get one free kid’s meal with each adult entrée.


Chili’s
– Get two free kid’s meal with each adult meal purchased.

 

Gold Star Chili – Children 12 and under eat free with an adult purchase of $8 or more.


Lazlo’s Iron Skillet
– Kids eat free and adults can enjoy $5 appetizers at the bar.

 

Tom + Chee – Get a free kids meal with the purchase of any combo.

Check out these exciting Cincinnati kid-friendly activities. 

 

Wednesday

Bookworm Movie Wednesdays
Springdale Cinema
Times Vary
Bookworm Wednesdays entitles kids to free admission to a select children’s film when they present a book report at a participating Cinema de Lux, Showcase, or Multiplex Cinemas box office. Accompanying parents or guardians and children under six years of age receive free admission and do not need to submit a book report.

 

Free Movies for Kids
Esquire, Mariemont or Kenwood Movie Theater
June 3 – July 31
10:30 a.m.
On these days, kids and their guardians can enjoy movies. Seating is first come, first served. Kids will be able to enjoy movies like Smallfoot, Iron Giant, Teen Titans Go, Storks, and more.


REC Reads

Cincinnati Art Museum
11:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Your toddler or preschooler can enjoy a morning of art-themed books, songs and sensory activities at the Rosenthal Education Center. The interactive session lasts 30 minutes. Registration not required.

 

Summer Adventure with the Library
Washington Park
1 p.m.
Join the library staff for a variety of children’s programming and summer activities designed for the whole family.

 

Party on the Purple
Purple People Bridge
6 p.m.
Party to the sounds of different live bands taking the stage in the middle of the bridge during the course of the summer. The events will include beer, food trucks, soft drinks wine and spirits.

 

Workout on the Green
Washington Park
6 p.m.
Register for fitness classes that provides in-depth workouts. All classes are led by licensed and trained instructors.

 

Crown Jewels of Jazz
St. Aloysius
6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Come out on the lawn and enjoy food trucks, refreshments and jazz from Sistas Who Swing, Marc Fields Quintet, Julian Vaughn and Christian Sands.

 

Wednesdays in the Woods
Burnet Woods
7 p.m.
Enjoy live entertainment, hands-on art activities for kids, and more.

 

Reggae Wednesdays
Fountain Square
7 p.m.
Kick off your weekend with the sounds of local reggae bands. All ages welcome.

 

Summer Cinema
Washington Park
9 p.m.
Grab your lawn chair and picnic basket for a relaxing evening on the Civic lawn. Take the whole family.

 

Thursday


Nature Play

Washington Park
5 p.m.
Children can enjoy hands-on nature activities designed to nurture a lifelong love of the outdoors including gardening, worming, nature identification and more.

 

Thursday Workout
Ziegler Park
6 p.m.
Kick off your weekend feeling strong. All sessions are given by licensed instructors.

 

Salsa on the Square
Fountain Square
7 p.m.
Hear live local and regional Latin bands specializing in Salsa, Merengue, Cumbia and Latin Jazz. In addition to the live music, local dance instructors host large dance classes teaching basic and intermediate Latin dancing.

 

Summer Music on the Levee
Newport on the Levee
7 p.m.
Enjoy local Cincinnati hard seltzer, beer, cocktails, food and more! Entertainment includes Soul Pocket, Ithika, The Menus and more.


Is it family night in? Check out these Black kids movies on Netflix.

 

Friday


Baby Tours

Cincinnati Art Museum
Every Third Friday at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.
Introduces your infant (ages 0-2) to visual and mind stimulation activities. Reservations are required online or by calling 513-721-2787.


Qdoba – Get 1 free kids meal with an adult entrée after 4 p.m.

 

Final Fridays Gallery Walk
The Pendleton Art Center
6 p.m. – 10 p.m.
On the final Friday of each month the studios are open to the public, giving guests the opportunity to view creative art space, as well as purchase one-of-a-kind artwork directly from artists.

 

Summer Concert Series
Sawyer Point
6 p.m.
Enjoy free concerts on Fridays (and some Tuesdays) with live music, food, drinks and more! Bands will bring you everything from Reggae to the Rolling Stones.

 

P&G Friday Flow
Washington Park
7 p.m.
The R&B Series will feature local and national acts and bands for your enjoyment. Before the concert, enjoy happy hour from 5-7 p.m.

 

Sizzling Summer Entertainment Series
Colerain Park Amphitheater
7 p.m. or Dusk
Alternating Fridays, families can come out and enjoy movies like How to Train Your Dragon at dusk or concerts from artists like the Jump N’ Jive Band.

 

Fifth & Vine Live
Fountain Square
Fridays & Saturdays at 7 p.m.
Features an eclectic lineup of national, regional, and local acts as well as event partnerships with local organizations.

 

Take a road trip and visit one of these African American museums.

 

Saturday


Weekend Workout

Washington Park
9 a.m.
After a long work week, relax with a variety of fitness routines from certified instructors from the YMCA. All skill levels welcome.

 

Izzy’s – Children under 14 eat free at these locations.

 

Steak ‘N Shake – Get 1 free child’s meal for children under 12 per $9 (or over) spent on adult entrée. The deal does not include drinks or shakes. Available Saturday and Sunday.

Have a free weekend? Check out these Midwest festivals. 

 

Sunday


Taft Museum of Art

Every Third Sunday
11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Offers an extensive art collection that includes American master paintings, Chinese porcelains, European decorative arts. Limited free on-site parking is available.

 

YMCA
Various locations
Offers discounted membership package options for the undeserved and underprivileged community. Download the application online to complete.

Don’t feel like going out? Check out these Black movies on Netflix. 

 

Everyday (except where noted)

Mount Airy Forest
Open daily 6 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Access hiking trails, an enclosed dog park, and play disc golf. The Mt. Airy Treehouse is wheelchair accessible.

 

Smale Riverfront Park
Open daily 6 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Play lawn games, listen to live music and enjoy a variety of roaming and staged performers.

 

Sharon Woods
Open daily 7 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Features a visitor center with exhibits, recreation area with paved trails, golf, boating, museum, gift shop and the Adventure Station, an accessible two-story indoor play area for children ages 2-12.

 

Armleder Memorial Sprayground
Open daily 7 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Located in Sawyer Point, north of the Ohio river and the Serpentine Wall, the park has a large water spraying fountain that will cool you off from the summer heat.

 

MakerSpace
Cincinnati Main Library – 2nd Floor (North Building)
Open 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday-Wednesday; 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; and 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday.
Gain access to 3D printers, audio and visual equipment, laser cutters and engravers, sewing machines, cameras and other hardware and software tools to create, invent, and learn.

 

Cincinnati Museum Center
Open daily 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Guests with valid food assistance card and photo ID will receive free parking and $2/person admission with the Discovery Pass for up to ten guests.

 

Contemporary Arts Center
Open Saturday-Monday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Wednesday-Friday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Free Entry
Enjoy films that complement various exhibitions at the center. All ages welcome. Closed on Tuesdays.

 

Cincinnati Zoo
Open daily 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Show your food assistance card – SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) to receive discounted tickets or a Membership.

 

Interactive Water Park
Washington Park
Open daily 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Consists of more than 130 pop-up jets that are synchronized to music and lights. Also enjoy steps with cascading water and a large boulder with water flowing over the sides to create a playful attraction for children.

 

Cincinnati Art Museum
Open 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday; 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Thursday; Closed Mondays
Features more than 67,000 works spanning 6,000 years. Visitors can enjoy the exhibitions or participate in the museum’s wide range of art-related programs, activities and special events.

 

Cincinnati Free Lunch Program
Public Libraries
June 3 – August 16
Times Vary
Daily lunches and snacks are available at select library locations. Lunches are available Monday through Friday. There will be no food service on Thursday, July 4, due to the holiday. Food is served while supplies last.

 

CiCi’s Pizza – Children under 3 eat free off the buffet. Kids beverage not included.

 

Cincinnati Shakespeare in the Park
Various locations
Cincinnati Shakespeare Company will perform Shakespeare plays in communities across the tri-state. Click link for location and show time information.

 

CRC Swim Lessons
Various locations
June 10 – July 3
Children 17 and under
Registration for the lessons will be on-site at various times that can be found online. Certain locations offer free lessons. Swim lesson participants can also earn a free pool membership just by completing the swim lesson session at the participating locations as well! For more information, call 513-357-7665 or email aquatics@cincinnati-oh.gov.

 

Fricker’s – Get 1 free kid’s meal for children under 10 with each adult entrée.

 

IHOP – Get 1 free kid’s meal for children under 12 per adult entrée from 4 p.m. – 10 p.m.

 

Kids Bowl Free
Register child online to receive 2 free bowling a day during the summer at the following locations: Batavia Bowl, Eastgate Lanes, S&S Western Bowl, Heid Bowling Lanes, Stones Lanes, Madison Bowl, and Colerain Bowl.

 

O’Charley’s – Get 1 free kid’s meal with the purchase of an adult entrée. Beverage not included.

 

Skyline – Children 12 and under eat free with the purchase of an adult entrée.

 

Summer Meals
Various locations
Children ages 1-18 are eligible to receive free meals and snacks during the summer at participating sites. No meals will be served on July 4.

 

Teen Summer Challenge
Planet Fitness
Open 24 hours
Teens ages 15-18 can work out for free at Planet Fitness until September 1st. All teens who sign up are entered into Planet Fitness’ Scholarship Sweepstakes. At the end of the summer, Planet Fitness will be awarding one $500 scholarship in each state/province and a $5,000 grand prize.*Note: Teens must work out at the location they sign up at and are not permitted to use other locations.

 

Trammel Fossil Park
Open daily 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Take the kids to explore the park and search for hidden treasures. Be sure to wear gym shoes with socks and bring your own bucket. Pants are preferred.

 

Weston Art Gallery
Aronoff Center for the Arts
Open 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; Noon – 5 p.m. Sunday
Take a guided tour and receive in-depth knowledge and behind-the-scenes information about various exhibitions.

 

Waffle House – Children eat free with the purchase of an entrée over $6. Available Monday – Thursday.

 

If there are any activities we missed, please let us know at The Voice of Black Cincinnati.

 

 

The Voice of Black Cincinnati is a media company designed to educate, recognize and create opportunities for African Americans in the region. Visit our homepage, explore other articles, subscribe to our newsletter, follow us on Facebook or text VOBC to 797979 for local news, events, job postings, scholarships and a database of local Black-owned businesses.

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