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Parks & Recreation
City of Oklahoma City

Gas prices and rising food costs taking the air out of your summer spending? The Oklahoma City Parks and Recreation Department has just the recipe for summer fun on a budget. Check out our baker’s dozen of free and low-cost activities. They’re sure to fill the family fun quotient, without taking a chunk out of your checkbook.

1. Nothing says FREE SUMMER FUN like the City’s 15 area spraygrounds. These interactive water parks are making a splash with kids young and old with their water cannons, dump buckets and assorted spray features. The City also offers 5 free swimming pools, and four low-cost specialty pools and Family Aquatic Centers. For sprayground, pool and family aquatic center hours and information, call (405) 297-2211.

2. Spend an evening under the stars at the OKC Arts Council’s Sunday Twilight Concert Series held at the Myriad Botanical Gardens. Grab a blanket, a picnic and listen to the best local music around, all with a spectacular downtown view. The free concerts begin at 7:00 p.m. and run weekly each Sunday beginning June 1. Call (405) 297-3995 for schedule and band information.

3. Explore your wild side at Martin Park Nature Center, the city’s largest wildlife sanctuary. With just over 3 ½ miles of off-road hiking trails and a rambling creek that runs through the park, there is plenty to do and see at Martin Park, located at 5000 West Memorial Road. Admission to the park is FREE. Park hours are Wed. – Sun., 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

4. Looking for a more worldly adventure? Then trek on over to the Myriad Botanical Gardens Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory for its newest exhibit “Passport to Plants.” Exploring the tropical ecosystems and cultures of six very distinct countries. While there, take in an adventure of the literary kind during the Gardens’ monthly Saturday Story Series. The story series is FREE with paid admission to the Crystal Bridge. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for children 4 to 12. Call 297-3995 or visit www.myriadgardens.com for more information.

5. If travel’s not your thing, stay “Close to Home” with the City’s “Hooked on Fishing” FREE Kids Fishing Classes for anglers 5-15. Held multiple Saturdays throughout the summer, the classes teach knot tying, casting, fish identification and etiquette. Poles, tackle and bait provided during class. State license and City fishing permit are NOT required during class times. For class date and location information, visit us online at www.okc.gov/parks, or call (405) 297-2211.

6. Grab some skates or a bike, or hop on a board and find your groove at the Mat Hoffman Action Sports Park, 1700 South Robinson. Kids of all ages will have fun catching air, pulling a fakie, or even doing a 360 (if they dare) at the largest and raddest skate park around. Park is open daily from dawn to 11:00 p.m. Don’t forget your pads and helmet!

7. If deep bowls and rad rails aren’t quite your speed, then slow down and enjoy a relaxing ride (or walk) along one of the more than 70 miles of trails that run throughout Oklahoma City. Whether it’s a ride around Lake Hefner or Overholser, or a scenic route along the Oklahoma River, family adventures begin on the OKC Trails.

8. Play in the Park: Kids age 6 and older will climb all over the many activities held during the Parks Department’s signature summer program. Play in the Park offers FREE supervised fun at 26 locations across the metro. The program runs daily Monday – Friday from 8 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. beginning June 11.

9. Rec-and-Roll. Kids 6 and over will find activities a-plenty at the City’s 12 Community Recreation Centers. Arts & crafts, games, performing arts and sports are just a few of the many structured fun opportunities offered Monday-Friday across the metro. Seniors 50+ can enjoy their own activities and social events at the City’s two Senior Activity Centers, located at Will Rogers and Woodson parks. Call 297-2211 for a complete list of activities.

10. Get Bow-Wowed. Don’t leave Fido in the doghouse, grab your four-legged friends and head over to the Hefner PAW Park for some canine camaraderie, where he can romp, roam, or have a splashing good time in the PAW Park Pond. The Hefner PAW Park is located at NW 73 and Grand Boulevard.

11. Learn to Landscape: The Will Rogers Gardens offers free horticulture classes once a month at the Will Rogers Garden Exhibition Center, 3400 NW 36th Street. “Landscaping for Public Spaces” will be held on July 11 and August 8. If plants aren’t your thing, the Center also offers free twice-monthly drawing classes. Call 943-0827 for more information.

12. It’s game, set, match at one of the City’s multiple tennis courts. The Earlywine Tennis Center, 3101 SW 119, has twelve lighted courts and offers hourly court fees of only $5. Or, for a FREE game, find your way to one of the 39 tennis courts located at local parks throughout Oklahoma City. Visit www.okc.gov/parks for a complete list of locations.

13. Grab a frisbee and let it fly at one of the City’s three disc golf courses, located at Dolese Youth Park, Will Rogers Park and Woodson Park. Free family fun for kids of all ages. For more information about these, and other Parks-related programs and activities, call (405) 297-2211, or visit us online at www.okc.gov/parks.