20 Free Events & Things to Do with Kids This Summer in Wichita

Here’s a list of free things to do with kids in Wichita this summer! Somewhere between the camps, family vacations, and stops at the closest ice cream shop, you’re going to need a few budget-friendly boredom busters. 

free things to do with kids in Wichita
Admission to Cowtown is FREE on Sundays April-October!

Free Things To Do With Kids in Wichita This Summer

1. Free Admission on Sundays at Old Cowtown Museum – Step back in time and enjoy a wagon ride or try a sarsparilla at Old Cowtown Museum, admission is FREE on Sundays from April – October.

2. Attend a free performance of Aurora’s Wedding this summer with Metropolita Ballet’s ballet in the park series!

Metropolitan Ballet summer 2023 schedule.

3. Check out these FREE movies in the park this summer!

Movies in the Park: Shrek
7:30 pm, Sunday May 28
OJ Watson Park | Wichita, KS
The movie will start after 7:30pm, concessions will be available. Make sure to bring your lawn chairs or blankets. No outside food or drink is allowed.

6:00 pm | Sundays
Capitol Federal Amphitheater | 1607 E Central Ave, Andover, KS 67002

A family favorite (and with the amazing park nearby!), the annual Outdoor Movies in the Park is happening summer 2023 at the Capitol Federal Amphitheater in Andover, KS. Bring your own lawn chairs, blankets, and snacks! 
  • June 25th Showing: Family Camp (PG)
  • July 30th Showing: Top Gun (rated PG-13)
  • August 27th: Paws of Fury (rated PG)
  • October 22nd: The Nightmare Before Christmas (rated PG)

4. Summer concerts are back again at Bradley Fair! Every Thursday in June, pack some blankets or lawn chairs & a picnic and enjoy live music outdoors. The shows start at 7:30pm, but it’s best to get there early to get a good seat!

    • June 1st – Rudy Love Jr. 

A local favorite, Rudy Love Jr. is a musical artist from right here in Wichita who combines the styles of R&B, soul, funk, and jazz. Following in the footsteps of his father, musician Rudy Love Sr., Rudy has a distinctive voice and has shared the stage with artists like Moonchild, Kansas, Anderson Paak, and The Family Stone.

Learn more about Rudy Love Jr.

    • June 8th – Daydream

Daydream is a 9-piece funk/fusion horn band from Wichita, KS that plays thoughtful, original compositions that groove. The group consists of local college music professors, Wichita Symphony members, band & orchestra teachers, and professional musicians.

Learn more about Daydream

    • June 15th – Music Theatre Wichita

Music Theatre Wichita presents “Broadway UNPLUGGED!” Some of MTWichita’s finest performers will entertain audiences with Broadway showstoppers from some of today’s hottest musicals as well as some new twists on some classics. Expect to hear songs from WICKED, WAITRESS, HAMILTON as well as CAROUSEL, CRAZY FOR YOU, and more.

Learn more about Music Theatre Wichita

    • June 22nd – Josué Estrada Band

Josué Estrada is a local trumpeter who, with his 9-member band, combines the sounds of funk, soul, and jazz to create a lively and energetic performance. You’ll definitely be dancing and grooving at this show!

Learn more about Josué Estrada Band

    • June 29th – Low Pressure System

Based out of Kansas City, Low Pressure System has been making waves with their unique sound that blends rock, alternative, and indie. This dynamic band is sure to impress with their electrifying performance.

Stick around following Low Pressure System’s performance! We’re proud to partner with Fidelity Bank, the official sponsor of Bradley Fair Summer Concerts Firework Finale at approximately 9:30 PM. 

Learn more about Low Pressure System

5. Track down the Little Free Library nearest you! Donate the books your kids have outgrown and pick out some new ones to fill your shelves! There are Little Free Libraries all around Wichita – check out our map here.

6. Don’t miss the Red, White & BOOM! Fireworks Display on July 4th!

Tuesday, July 4 the community is invited to this FREE event that gets underway at 6pm with the gates opening at Riverfront Stadium and food trucks staged around the Hyatt Lawn. Fireworks will light up the night sky at 9:40pm!
Riverfront Stadium
Gates open at 6pm for holiday-goers to enjoy the concessions in the stadium, entertainment provided by the Wind Surge and great seats in the stadium to watch the fireworks show!
Hyatt Lawn
A variety of food trucks will be onsite at the Hyatt Lawn for spectators to enjoy. Don’t forget to bring a blanket or lawn chairs to sit on while you wait for the show to start. Watching the festive fireworks from the lawn is a tradition you don’t want to miss!
Fore more details about parking, street closures and more visit wichita.gov/BOOM.

7. Take A Ride on the Q-Line – These buses (the trolleys have retired) are FREE and run loops through downtown Wichita, the Douglas Design District, and College Hill!

8. Shakespeare in the Park, anyone? The Wichita Shakespeare Company will present Much Ado About Nothing in various parks around Wichita in June. Admission is free; bring your lawn chairs or picnic blankets! 

9 .Visit the Riverside Park, Zoo & Splash Park – Tour the outdoor wildlife exhibit, go wild on the playground, and cool off in the interactive water water fountains! Make a day of it, and bring a picnic lunch.

10. Use our map and go on a Wichita Mural Scavenger Hunt! This is one of our favorite free things to do with kids in Wichita! Use the Q-Line or walk and take some ICT kid pics in front of our city’s favorite murals!

free things to do with kids in Wichita

11. Great Plains Nature Center – Go on a nature hike and visit Koch Habitat Hall. The Agents of Discovery app sponsored by Wildife and Parks, is a national app that guides you through a park, become an agent, solve a mission, and get a prize! Agents of Discovery is an augmented reality mobile game to play and discover the world around you. You are a secret agent with an animal guide to help you solve challenges in a mission. As you explore Great Plains Nature Center, you’ll discover the hidden challenges based on your location. Discover Kansas nature in a new way!

When you arrive at the nature center, look for the Agents of Discovery sign by the GPNC parking lot to get started. Download the Agents of Discovery mobile app in Apple or Play Stores before arriving.

12. Take the Wildlifer Challenge

Can YOU complete the WildLifer Challenge? Join us during our Outdoor Kansas (O.K.) Kids event on June 4th from 10 am to 1 pm. Kids will face up against hikes, archery, fishing, crafts, and more! Completion of this challenge makes your kid a bona fide wild child and may even earn them some prizes! This event is brought to you by Kansas Wildscape to encourage young outdoor enthusiasts to have some fun under the Kansas sun!

More about the Wildlifer Challenge: https://kansaswildlifer.com/Challenges

Sign ups for hikes, archery, and fishing on a first come, first serve basis.

13. Visit one of Wichita’s 20 free splash parks & water playgrounds – Check out our Splash Park & Fountain Round-Up to find the water playgrounds closest to you – or mix it up and try one in another town!

free things to do with kids in Wichita
Family ArtVenture at WAM is a fun & free way to fill your Saturday!

14. Mark your calendar for Free Fishing Weekend – Grab your rod & reel the first weekend in June and head out for Free Fishing Weekend in Kansas!

15. Free Family ArtVenture Events at Wichita Art Museum

WAM is always FREE Tuesday-Sunday!

Explore, look, and take part in art together with a FREE Family ArtVenture, featuring special gallery activities and hands-on artmaking projects that bring WAM’s art exhibitions to life. No reservations are required, and you may drop in anytime on select Saturdays between 11 am and 3 pm. Stay for an hour, or stay for the afternoon. Activities take place throughout the museum.

  • Saturday, May 27 | 11 am to 3 pm: Ani-May
    Step into the world of anime for the month of May. Enjoy anime films and create your own anime character. Get in the spirit by coming dressed as your favorite character!
  • New summer program in the gallery! WAM offers a FREE Storytime on the 3rd Thursday of each month from 10:30-11am (June 15th, July 20th, Aug 17th)

16. Go  find Wichita’s waterfalls! – Load up the fam and go hunting for our local waterfalls while you hike through Kansas nature! Hint: they’re easiest to find after a good rain!

free things to do with kids in Wichita
Chasing waterfalls & hiking!

17. Sign Up Now for Kids Bowl Free – Register your kids for 2 free games of bowling every day! Participating local bowling alleys include Seneca Bowl in Wichita, Derby Bowl in Derby, and The Alley Hutchinson in Hutch.

18. Wichita Public Library Storytimes – Participate in WPL’s summer reading program, attend a storytime, puppet show, craft time or party! Classes and book clubs are also available for adults. Click here for their full calendar of events.

19. Keeper of the Plains/Troll/Lighting of Ring of Fire – Visit Wichita’s most well-known landmark, the Keeper of the Plains and stay for the lighting of the Ring of Fire at 9pm! Brave souls can search for the Wichita Troll while you’re there.

20. Pack a picnic lunch and head out for a park hop! These are our team’s favorite parks in and around ICT. Bored of Wichita parks? Bet you haven’t visited all 6 of these out-of-town parks that are totally worth the drive!

21. Get lost in nature…in the city! Wichita has 12 Wild Habitat Areas with fun paths to enjoy on a sunny day.

22. Download the Sunflower Summer app and enjoy FREE admission to over 70 family-friendly attractions around the state!

Sunflower Summer provides a wide variety of ways for families to get out, explore something new, and enjoy time together. Kansas families can visit museums, zoos, historic landmarks and more for free!

More Things To Do In & Around Wichita This Summer

Erin Bartel
Erin is a marketing consultant in Wichita KS. She spends her days helping businesses and non-profits navigate the ever-changing waters of digital & local marketing and homeschooling her kids. She and her daughter also own Sassy Squid Ink, an imprint designing notebooks, journals, and sketchbooks. A mother of 2 happily married to her college sweetheart, Erin's hobbies include bribing herself to exercise, traveling with (and without) her family, and trying to remember where she hid the chocolate.