By Corinne Burgermeister
Madison is a great Midwestern destination that has a lot for kids and families to do. Many attractions are free or low-cost, which allow you to pack a lot of fun into your trip. Catch these great, kid-friendly events in Madison before the summer is up!
Mid-July through Mid-August
More than a dozen species of butterflies take over the Bolz Conservatory at Olbrich Botanical Gardens for the annual Blooming Butterflies event. Kids will experience a variety of tropical plants and see butterflies emerge from chrysalises daily. Outdoors, stretch your legs and stroll 16 acres of gardens and the beautiful Thai Pavilion.
Come to Monona Terrace on Wednesday mornings and enjoy this eclectic and educational program designed for children ages four and up. A wide variety of local performers, artists, and organizations provide entertainment, hands-on fun and learning.
Free Family Night at Madison Children’s Museum
On the first Wednesday evening of most months, Madison Children’s Museum opens its doors with free admission for all. A variety of educational programming is offered daily.
Science Saturday at Discovery
Kids activities featuring interactive explorations stations centered around a particular topic during this free event held at the Discovery Building. Families and learners of all ages are invited to explore hands-on science fun day during this free drop-in event.
First Saturday - monthly
Head to Story Saturday at Wisconsin Historical Museum for kid-friendly stories about our state. Free activities and crafts bring the stories to life!
Zoovies at Henry Vilas Zoo
Catch a free movie at Henry Vilas Zoo, one of the nation’s oldest zoos. Grab some popcorn, set up a blanket on the lawn and enjoy the movie at dusk.
Dinner & A Swim at Goodman Community Pool
Bring the family together for a night at Goodman Community Pool. Enjoy a food cart dinner, and then spend time swimming, diving and cruising down water slides. Goodman Pool and splash pads at Elver, Cypress and Reindal Parks are open daily.
Ice Cream Boat Float
Paddle your way around Lake Wingra for an ice cream social. Head to different stations to collect a bowl, ice cream, toppings, whip cream and cherry. Can’t make it to the social? Kayak, canoe and paddleboard rentals are available daily at Brittingham, Wingra and Marshall Boats.
Madison Mallards Game:
June - August
Head to the Duck Pond for a Madison Mallards baseball game, a summertime favorite for the whole family. Each game offers a variety of giveaways and food and drink deals—including the option to turn in foul balls for a free hot dog!
Find a full calendar of events at visitmadison.com.