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By David O’Brien

Parents are always looking for ways to keep their kids entertained during the summer. Fortunately, St. Louis has a lot of great kids events, activities and attractions that are free. Here are the top things to do with your children in St. Louis without spending any money.

 St. Louis Zoo

Admission to the St. Louis Zoo is always free, but each day during the summer from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m., the Children’s Zoo, the Conservation Carousel, the Stingrays at Carribean Cove and other special exhibits are also free. The Children’s Zoo has an outdoor playground with slides, bridges and rope ladders. Kids can also get an up-close look at bunnies, guinea pigs and other animals. During the summer, the Zoo is open until 7 p.m., on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Grant’s Farm

Grant’s Farm is another great place to see animals from around the world. The 281 acre farm in South St. Louis County is home to hundreds of animals, including the famous Budweiser Clydesdales. In the summer, Grant’s Farm is open daily except Mondays. Admission is free for everyone, but parking is $12 per car.

Children’s Garden

Admission is free to the Children’s Garden at the Missouri Botanical Garden on Wednesday evenings from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m during the Whitaker Music Festival. The Children’s Garden is designed to teach kids about nature in a fun way. There’s a tree house, frontier fort, outdoor classroom and more.

Powder Valley Nature Center

Families can take a hike on one of several paved trails that weave through the Powder Valley Nature Conservation Center. There’s also an indoor learning center and special free classes for kids throughout the summer.

Fountain at Tower Grove Park

The fountain and wading pool at Tower Grove Park is a nice place for kids to cool off in the summer heat. There are dozens of pop-jets for children to play in, as well as a large water bowl in the center of the fountain. During the summer, the fountain and jets are on every day. The wading pool is open Tuesday through Sunday.

Magic House

St. Louis’ top children’s museum has free admission for families on the third Friday of the month from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

St. Louis Science Center

Admission to the St. Louis Science Center is free for everyone (except for special exhibits). On the first Friday night of each month there is also a free Star Party at the Planetarium. Members of the St. Louis Astronomical Society set up telescopes for public viewing outside and there are kid-friendly events inside.


Citygarden is one of the newest attractions in Downtown St. Louis. It’s a city park filled with fountains, wading pools, sculpture and more. It’s a great free place for kids to play on a hot summer day. Citygarden is located along Market Street between 8th and 10th Streets. It is open daily from sunrise to 10 p.m.

Wehrenberg Theatres Family Summer Series

Kid friendly movies are shown on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 10 a.m., at nine local Weherenberg Theatres.

www.StLouisHomesByGina.com The Gina Koerner Team 636-229-8746