Free and Inexpensive Things to Do This Summer on Staten Island

Screen Shot 2017-06-12 at 1.29.46 PM
Planning something to do with the kids everyday is not only difficult but it can become expensive as well. You want to make sure the kids have a fun, memorable summer without breaking the bank. Luckily, Staten Island is loaded with tons of free or inexpensive events all summer long! From concerts to movies, you’ll be able to find something for everyone in the family to enjoy. Be sure to keep checking this page as we will be updating regularly.

Movies, Movies, and More Movies!
Grab a blanket and find a spot under the stars for a family-friendly flick this summer, courtesy of NYC Parks and the New York City Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment. Movies usually start at 8pm and take place at various parks throughout the city. Click here for the July and August schedule.

$1 movies are back! The Regal Cinemas Summer Movie Express plays family-friendly movies every Tuesday and Wednesday at 10am for just a dollar, all summer long! Beat the heat in a cool theatre with a movie everyone will enjoy. Click here to see the 2017 summer schedule.

Staten Island Public Pools, Beaches, & Sprinkler Parks
When the dog days of summer hit, nothing is as refreshing as a dive in the pool or a sprint through the sprinkler. Staten Island has several public pools that are open free of charge all week long. The 2017 season begins Saturday, June 29. Can’t swim? the NYC Parks Department offers FREE SWIM LESSONS via lottery for several sessions throughout the summer to children, adults, and individuals with disabilities. Click here to learn more about the lessons and how to register.

Click here for a full list of the public pools, including times and locations.
Click here for a list of parks with sprinklers.
Click here for a list of Staten Island beaches.

And don’t forget to check out the hugely popular 2017 Sprinklerfest at Snug Harbor!

2017 Summer Sunset Concert Series
Sponsored by Borough President James Oddo with City Council Members Joe Borelli, Steven Matteo, and Debi Rose, the Sunset Concert series runs every Thursday until August 24. The concerts will be held at 7pm in various parks and venues on Staten Island. Below are the dates, locations and performances. Click here for the 2017 schedule of performances.

Camping with Urban Park Rangers 
How does a beautiful night camping under the stars sound? How about a night camping under the stars right here in Staten Island, where you don’t have to travel far and you are provided with free equipment and instructions for your whole family? Urban Park Rangers is hosting several free camping events in various Staten Island parks over the summer. Campers will be selected via lottery, and there are limited spots available for each session. See the schedule and learn how to register here.

Fireworks, Free Concerts and More on the Boardwalk
The Boardwalk at South Beach will be brimming with excitement all summer long. There will be fireworks on South Beach every Wednesday at sundown and free concerts under the Gazebo every Sunday from 4p.m. to 8pm. Chair rentals, food, and drinks will be available from the Boardwalk Grill. We will keep you posted with this summer’s concert lineup, so check back soon!

Wheel Fun Rentals lets families rent specialty cycles, bicycles, and other pedal-powered vehicles for hourly rates. Cruise a chopper or quad sport along the scenic FDR boardwalk for just $12. Rentals are available until October 23, though daily hours change by season.  Call 347-996-0378 for more info or visit them on the boardwalk at Sand Lane.

Festivals, Fairs & More
Stay in Staten Island or hop over the bridge to enjoy some of 2017′s most exciting fairs and festivals happening this summer. Most of the events on the Island’s are free to enter. Click here for a list of fairs this summer.

And be sure to check out Wacky Wednesdays on Richmond Road every Wednesday from August 9 to August 30, between 2pm and 4pm for free children’s activities along Richmond Road. Look out for a face painter, stilt walker, clown and some live music. Kids will have an opportunity to use chalk to decorate the side walks of businesses throughout Richmond Road.

Mini Golf, Go-Karts, Batting Cages
Staten Island FunPark offers go-karts, mini golf, and batting all summer long at their Castleton Corners location. A combo ticket lets you do all three for just $16. Perfect for adults and kids alike, it’s a great way to spend an afternoon keeping everyone happy. Just be sure to check the height requirements before go-karting. Kids under 40″ can’t ride as passengers and drivers need to be 58″ tall. Call 718-982-5576 for more info. S.I. FunPark is located at 215 Schmidts Lane.

Kayak Staten Island
Explore the shores of Staten Island a whole new way. Staten Island Kayak offers free kayaking to the public on Sundays throughout the summer. Children under 18 must be with a parent and you can fill out a waiver form at their website. Kayaking is offered at 850 Page Avenue or occasionally at Freshkills Park. Click here to see their schedule.

Summer Bowling Specials
Rab’s Country Lanes is offering a deal so good this summer, you’ll bowl over with excitement (get it?). From June 20 to September 8, you get two games of bowling, shoe rental, a slice of pizza or hotdog and a soda for only $10 per kid. The special is available seven days a week, from 9am to 6pm, for all kids under 18. Rabs is located at 1600 Hylan Blvd.

Showplace Entertainment Center has a pretty sweet deal for families too. Monday through Friday, from noon to 5pm, you get one hour of bowling, four shoe rentals, and a pizza pie for just $28. Showplace is located at 141 East Service Road.

Free kid-friendly shows? Yes, please! SummerStage is an ongoing performing arts festival offering free shows and concerts in city parks throughout all five boroughs in NYC. This year’s lineup is still in the works, but check the calendar for a upcoming performances in local parks of the puppet show, “Cinderella Samba,” a fairytale with a twist!

Library Programs
The libraries are the unsung heroes of the free event scene,  regularly providing fun and educational programs that are free of charge and cater to every age group. They offer mommy and me play groups, toddler and preschool story time, puppet show and plays, theme parties, comic book fun, homework and reading help, video game time, board game time, family film days, and so much more. Visit every day to find free events at your local library. Click here for a list of library branches in Staten Island. Click here for some fun summer reading programs.

Boogie Woogie Wednesdays at the Staten Island Children’s Museum
Put your dancing shoes on and get ready to boogie down! Boogie Woogie Wednesday at the Staten Island Children’s Museum are back! All summer long admission is FREE every Wednesday from 5 to 8pm in July & August. The fun includes storytime and crafts at 5:30, snacks at 6:30pm, and the dancing kicks off at 7pm. Each week includes a different international dance theme. The 2017 lineup is:
July 5 – Russian Dancing
July 12 – Belly Dance Day
July 19 – Irish Step Dance Day
July 26 – Mexican Folk Dance Day
August 2 – Chinese Traditional Dance Day
Aug. 9 – African Traditional Dance Day
Aug. 16 – American Hip Hop Day
Aug. 23 – Sri Lankan Dance Day
Aug. 30 – Broadway Style Dance Day

More information on each event can be found in the calendar

Cool Zoo Summer Series
The Staten Island Zoo offers free admission every Wednesday after 2pm (donations welcome). Zoo admission is just $5 for kids, $8 for adults, and FREE for kiddies under 3. Parking is always free and easy too! Check out their Cool Zoo Summer Series featuring different events on select Saturdays or Sundays throughout the summer! All Cool Zoo activities are free with admission. Here’s the 2017 lineup:
Animals & Storytelling • Saturday, July 1, 12-3pm
Extreme Raptors • Sunday, July 16 • 10am-4pm
Endangered Species Day • Saturday, July 29 • 12-3pm
Jenkinson’s Penguin Visit • Saturday, August 12, 12-3pm
Serpent Day • Sunday, August 20, 12-3pm

More information on each event can be found in the calendar.

CityParks Summer Sports
The CityParks Foundation will be offering free sports instructions all summer long for kids, golf, tennis, soccer, and track & field along with a new offering, Get up & Go, which will include activities like obstacle courses, relay races, and kickball. Programs will be offered throughout the summer at the following parks: Silver Lake Park, Walker Park, Wolfe’s Pond Park, FDR Boardwalk Ballfield, and Corporal Thompson Park. Click here to see the complete summer schedule and to link to a registration form.

Museums incorporate learning with fun. Since the learning is in short supply over the break, it’s the perfect time to visit local cultural institutions with your family. Many museums are low-cost, free, or accept donations only.

Click here for a list of museums that offer free days or times.
Click here for information on local museums, including a list of all the ones in Staten Island and a bunch over  the bridge, plus ethnic museums, museums you may not have tried yet, and more.

Kids in Motion
Kids In Motion gets children in NYC off the couch and into playgrounds. Kids in Motion staff lead four to seven hours of free activities for children per day, including organized sports, games, fitness demos, guided walks, board games, water games and more. It’s FREE to join and no registration is required. Just head to the playground during the listed hours of operation. Click here to see Staten Island dates, times, and locations for the 2017 season.

New York Junior Tennis & Learning
Kids 5-18 can learn tennis for free in Staten Island this summer! Free racquets and equipment will be provided, and tournaments and events will be held for kids of all ages throughout the season. It starts July 5 but registration is ongoing throughout the summer. The program is open to open to all kids 5-18, beginners to advanced levels — no one will be turned away! District 75 and children with special needs are always welcome. Registration will be done in person during program hours only on site at the locations listed below. The schedules and locations below are tentative and subject to change. Visit for more information.

IS 2 – Opens 7/5
Monday – Thursday: 9am-12pm
333 Midland Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10306
Site Director: TBD

Skyline Playground – Opens 7/7
Friday: 9am-2pm
Clyde Place & Prospect Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10301
Site Director: TBD

Tottenville HS – Opens 7/5
Monday – Thursday: 1-4pm
100 Luten Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10312
Site Director: TBD

Over the course of seven weeks each summer, PAL (Police Athletic League) closes roughly 15 public areas in New York City neighborhoods suffering from high rates of crime and poverty to create supervised and fun-filled places for children ages 6-16 to play in safety. Each PLAYSTREET has fun athletic and recreational equipment, as well as arts and crafts, to make a fun experience for the kids. All PLAYSTREETS are staffed with a Site Director, an Arts Specialist, and a Sports Specialist, providing adult mentors and supervision. Staten Island locations include: PS 31, PS 78, PS 41, PS 13, Michael J. Petrides School and Port Richmond Center (New World Prep). Click here to learn more about the Staten Island locations.

Free Summer Meals
School is out, but hunger doesn’t break for summer. The Summer Meals Program has returned this year, providing free, healthy breakfast and lunch to all children ages 18 and under at hundreds of locations around the City until September 2 (Note: there is no service on July 4). The Summer Meals Program is available at various public schools, community pool centers, New York City Housing Authority complexes, libraries, and other locations around the city. Children do not need to register or show any kind of documentation or ID to receive their free meal. To find a Summer Meals location near you, text “NYCMEALS” to 877-877, call 311, or link to their website here. And like most things nowadays, there’s an app for it. Download the “SchoolFood App” in the App Store or Google play to easily find a location near you.

If you haven’t yet applied for your free IDNYC card, what are you waiting for?? All IDNYC cardholders are eligible for a free year-long membership to all 35 participating cultural institutions around New York City. It doesn’t matter when you signed up, as long as you haven’t been a member at the institution since January 1, 2013. Here in Staten Island, participating institutions are: The Staten Island Museum, Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden, aThe St. George Theatre and the Jacques Marchais Center for Tibetan Art. Click here to see the complete list of participating cultural institutions around all five boroughs.

In addition to museum memberships, IDNYC cardholders have access to exclusive discounts on movie and Broadway tickets, top attractions, sporting events, New York based organizations, stores, classes and more. Click here for more information on the many benefits to being an IDNYC cardholder. Click here for more information on the application process.

«       Mar 2018       » loading...
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
  1. Easter Egg Hunt @ the Port Richmond Library

    March 23 @ 12:00 pm - 4:15 pm
    March 23, 2018  |  12:00 pm - 4:15 pm
    Port Richmond Library
    0 to 4 years @ 12 PM to 12:30 PM 5 years to 9 years @ 3:30 PM to 3:45 PM 10 years to 15 years @ 4 PM to 4:15 PM One winner from each age group will win
  2. Kidz Cook

    March 23 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
    March 23, 2018  |  3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
    SI Children's Museum
    Learn how the whipping technique adds volume to foods such as creams, eggs and cheeses.
  3. Wii Love Gaming

    March 23 @ 3:30 pm
    March 23, 2018  |  3:30 pm - 3:30 pm
    Stapleton Library
    Challenge your friends and other kids as you play cool Wii games!
  4. Game On!

    March 23 @ 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
    March 23, 2018  |  3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
    St. George Library
    Get ready to play some of your favorite board & Wii games.
  5. Happy Pig Day! An Elephant and Piggie Party

    March 23 @ 3:30 pm
    March 23, 2018  |  3:30 pm - 3:30 pm
    Great Kills Library
    For ages 4 and up. Pre-registration is recommended.
  6. St. Peters High School Heart Health for Athletes

    March 23 @ 6:00 pm
    March 23, 2018  |  6:00 pm - 6:00 pm
    St. Peter's High School
    Free BMI, EKG and Echo screenings for athletes  
  7. Political Issues Affecting our Youth Today

    March 24 @ 9:00 am - 12:00 pm
    March 24, 2018  |  9:00 am - 12:00 pm
    Zimmer Club
    Please join us on Saturdays from January 20th to April 21st (except March 31st) at 9:00AM for the 2018 Zimmer Youth Conservation Classes. The classes are from 9AM – 12 Noon for approximately 13 weeks.  Each week we teach about
  8. Saint George Greenmarket

    March 24 @ 9:00 am - 1:00 pm
    March 24, 2018  |  9:00 am - 1:00 pm
    St. Mark's Place and Hyatt St
    Set on a hill overlooking New York Harbor and the downtown Manhattan skyline, this market draws a dedicated following of neighborhood shoppers who line up each Saturday to get first dibs on the freshest seasonal fruit, produce, cheese, meat, seafood
  9. Eggstravagant Feast with the Bunny

    March 24 @ 9:30 am - 2:00 pm
    March 24, 2018  |  9:30 am - 2:00 pm
    Staten Island Zoo
    Join us for a special visit with breakfast AND lunch: hot buffet, Easter egg hunt, intimate animal encounters, ride our carousel with Chuck the Groundhog, take your own pictures with our Bunny (please bring your own camera), our cotton-tailed friend
  10. Sensory Storytime

    March 24 @ 10:30 am
    March 24, 2018  |  10:30 am - 10:30 am
    Tottenville Library
    An inclusive, 4-session program that combines the best practices from special education and traditional storytime to create an interactive, engaging program for children of all abilities! Limited to 12 children, best for ages 2 and older. Pre-registration begins one week