Looking for something free (or cheap) to do this summer in Cincinnati? We’ve got you covered with this list of 50 free and cheap things to do in Cincinnati for the summer of 2020.
PLEASE NOTE: A significant number of our 2020 summer events will start late, have been rescheduled, or will be canceled this year. Be sure to double check with your event before heading out the door – links are provided for each listing below.
Get Movin’ with these active events:
Head to beautiful Summit Park (City of Blue Ash) for some action packed activities: H.I.I.T. (high intensity interval training) on Mondays (5:30pm), Crossfit on Tuesdays (5:30pm), Yoga on Wednesdays (5:30pm), Kickboxing on Thursdays (5:30pm), Yoga on Sundays (9am), and Zumba on Sundays (10:15am). Classes scheduled to begin in June, 2020.
Grab your dancing shoes and head to Fountain Square on Thursday evenings for “Salsa on the Square” featuring 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. Happens from 7-10pm and event is scheduled to start in July, 2020.
Move it with Workout on the Green at Washington Park: Sessions are happening on Tuesdays (yoga and pilates), Wednesdays (rotating classes and Barre), and Saturdays (rotating). Classes are scheduled to begin the in July, 2020.
Kids Bowl Free at Batavia Bowl, Eastgate Lanes, S&S Western Bowl, Heid Bowling Lanes, Stones Lanes, Madison Bowl, Crossgate, and Colerain Bowl; must register online; full details at Kids Bowl Free
Put your dancin’ shoes on and head out to Ault Park in June for their Summer Music Festival (live music too)
Info for free fitness with Great Parks of Hamilton County has not been announced for 2020.
Movies, movies, movies! Catch these free flicks:
Washington Park is hosting Summer Cinema – a series of Wednesday night movies in the park. The movies are scheduled to begin in July, 2020.
Deerfield Township offers “Movies in the Park” is scheduled to begin on June 12, 2020. Movies include Secret Life of Pets 2 (6-12-2020), Jumanji: The Next Level (7-24-2020), Sonic the Hedgehog (8-28-2020), and Mulan, live action (9-25-2020).
Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum is hosting a Date Night Movie Night on July 10, 2020 (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood). Registration is required.
Summer classic movies are featured as part of “Cinema in the City” at Seasongood Pavilion; live music too! The 2020 schedule has not been released yet.
Liberty Center does not have any info out yet about their plans for 2020.
Anderson Township Park District usually hosts “Movies in the Park” . 2020 details have not been announced.
Colerain Township usually offers free movies as part of their Movies in the Park Series. The 2020 line-up has not been announced yet.
Enjoy free kids’ movies on several mornings at the Kenwood, Mariemont, and Esquire Theatres. 2020 dates and titles have not been announced.
Cinemark Cinemas in Western Hills and Milford are still closed at this time. We will continue to watch for their free kids movies this summer.
Bring the family:
Carol Ann’s Carousel at Smale Riverfront Park is currently closed (last updated 5-20-2020). When they are open, you can buy a token for a ride for just a few bucks; stick around Smale Riverfront Park for all kinds of free family fun including huge swings, playgrounds, walking paths, water playgrounds and more.
The $1 admission at The Cincinnati Zoo for “Macy’s Kids, Cultures, Critters and Crafts Festival” is up in the air this year as the Cincinnati Zoo is currently closed (last updated 5-20-2020).
Sharon Woods has an indoor playground – Adventure Station; park sticker required* and admission is charged. NOTE: the indoor playground is currently closed (last updated 5-20-2020).
Parky’s Playbarn, located at Parky’s Farm in Winton Woods, is a former dairy barn has been converted into an indoor, farm-themed, accessible playground; park sticker required* and admission is charged. NOTE: Parky’s Farm is currently closed (last updated 5-20-2020).
File these under “You’ve got to see it to believe it!”:
Head to “America’s Cardboard Boat Racing Capital” for the Cardboard Boat Regatta, New Richmond; this is part of River Days: 2020 date is TBD (last updated 5-20-2020).
Watch the hot air balloons light up the sky at Coney Island’s “Balloon Glow” followed by Rozzi fireworks over Lake Como; July 3; admission to the park is free, parking fees do apply.
There’s no shortage of free tunes:
Enjoy Roots Revival, an evening of free Bluegrass, Roots, and Americana music over at Washington Park’s bandstand. Thursdays, 7-9pm starting June 4, 2020.
Head to Washington Park for Friday Flow, a free R&B series , 7-10pm starting in July, 2020.
The City of Blue Ash has free concerts . 2020 schedule is coming soon (last updated 5-27-2020).
Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum will host The Belairs Show Band on July 8, 2020.
Enjoy “The Takeover” on the Square at Union Centre, 6-9pm on Thursday evenings. June concerts are canceled. Dates begin in July but there’s a message to say they are going to re-evaluate on a month by month basis (last updated 5-20-2020).
Wednesdays in the Woods features free concerts at the Burnet Woods Bandstand; Wednesdays beginning in July, 2020.
The West Chester Concert Series happens at Keehner Park, 7-9 p.m. on select Saturdays from July to Labor Day at the amphitheater. Guests are welcome to pack a picnic for the evening. Dates begin in July but there’s a message to say they are going to re-evaluate on a month by month basis (last updated 5-20-2020).
Concerts on The Square at Liberty Center on Wednesday nights – dates for 2020 TBD.
SummitFest the premier country music festival, has been canceled for 2020.
Butler County wants to help you out on Wednesdays with their “Hump Day Concert Series”. 2020 information is not available (last updated 5-20-2020).
Newport on the Levee has its Summer Concert Series features live music on the large patio. 2020 plans have not been published (last updated 5-20-2020).
Sawyer Point Summer Concert Series gives us another riverfront option. Their 2020 plans have not been announced
Rockin’ The Roebling Summer Concert Series has not released any details for 2020. Last year’s events happened on the Schmidlapp Lawn (next to Moerlein Lager House).
Anderson Township Parks hosts free concerts in the parks at the Beech Acres Park Amphitheater; their 2020 plans have not been posted as of 5-20-2020
Enjoy the arts:
Shakespeare in the Park is still TBD for 2020 (last updated 5-20-2020).
The City Flea blankets Washington Park with indie crafters, great food, and more (no admission). They are hoping to return on Jun 20, 2020 but that’s TBD as of 5-20-2020.
Enjoy the sounds of the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra with their Summer Series at Devou Park – 2020 dates are TBD.
Cincinnati Opera in the Park has been canceled for 2020.
Can you hit up all of these water playgrounds this summer?
Washington Park (free) – info on openings and closings to come soon, last updated 5-20-2020
Smale Riverfront Park (free) – info on openings and closings to come soon, last updated 5-20-2020
Armeleder Memorial Sprayground, Sawyer Point – pictured above (free) – info on openings and closings to come soon, last updated 5-20-2020
Parky’s Ark at Winton Woods*, admission charged – info on openings and closings to come soon, last updated 5-20-2020
Parky’s Wetland Adventure at Woodland Mound*, admission charged – info on openings and closings to come soon, last updated 5-20-2020
Cincinnati area parks got it goin’ on!
Find LOADS of free Great Parks of Hamilton County Park District* events on their Event Calendar (park sticker required for admission to park)
The City of Cincinnati Park District offers many free and low cost events
Many parks have Disc Golf courses
Other activities and events:
Learn to Geocache and you’ll have something to do all summer – Geocaching for Beginners
“Red, White, and Blue Ash” has been canceled for 2020.
Discounts and freebies for major attractions:
The Cincinnati Museum of Art offers free general admission everyday and parking is free. The museum is currently closed (last updated 5-27-2020).
The Contemporary Arts Center offers free admission to the galleries. The museum is currently closed (last updated 5-27-2020).
* Great Parks of Hamilton County requires a park sticker to enter the park. Park stickers are available at a manned station as you pull into each park. Get the prices and details here.
All events were accurate at the time of this posting but things do happen and events do occasionally get canceled or postponed. You should always double check with the event source before you head out the door. Links for each event are provided so that you can be sure the date is still accurate before you head out.