With our list of kidtastic things to do for $10 or less, your family can forget all about words like "economic downturn" and start saying these instead: Best. Summer. Ever.
FREE Take time to SHELebrate
An eclectic array of artists, including country singers Bobby Bare Sr., Bobby Bare Jr., Jon Langford and Sally Timms join SHELebration: A Tribute to Shel Silverstein (6:30pm, Jul 13) honoring the work of the late children’s author/poet/illustrator. This hoedown is part of the summer-long Millennium Park Family Fun Festival (Jun 10–Sept 4, 10am–3pm), which features performers and activities daily. Highlights include Circus Carnival Week (Jul 6–12) and Rock ’n’ Roll Week (Aug 3–9). Visit millenniumpark.org for info. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Michigan Ave and Randolph Dr.
Play with a friend
Have all the fun at half the price. Time Out Chicago Kids readers who visit South Loop indoor play space Room2Play on Fridays from June 1–August 31 get 50 percent off admission (normally $12) when you bring a friend. 2255 S Michigan Ave (312-225-9000, room2playchicago.com).
FREE Tune in, hang out
Toddlers, Tunes and Turtles introduces wee ones to nature through activities such as inspecting leaves through a magnifying glass and live critter meet ’n’ greets. Pack a picnic and stay on for the jams—the South Shore Cultural Center event (7059 S South Shore Dr, 773-256-0149; Jun 3, 5–7pm), for example, features live music from the Old Town School of Folk Music. Check chicagoparkdistrict.com and the Kids section in at timeoutchicago.com/kids for other dates and locations.