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Kid Friendly Free or Cheap Activities in Portland

The Toy Trains - Live music for kids and grown ups, too

The Toy Trains are a local Portland band specializing in awesome live music for toddlers on up. Their debut CD is now out, and you can read more about them, their music, and upcoming gigs at The Toy Trains site.

Summer Fun and Free things to do with kids

As mentioned previously, Portland Parks has an entire Summer Free For All program with a zillion free events for kids of all ages. They sponsor Movies in the Portland Parks with live pre show music and the occasional rock climbing wall. And don't forget the Concerts in the Park program as well. See more up to date info on their Summer Free For All Facebook page.

Free lunches and some breakfasts for kids available in the Portland Metro parks this summer - Here's the listing for Milwaukee, Tigard, etc. from the Oregonian. Here's the main site for All summer free food programs in Oregon. I believe meals are available for adults for around $3.00. Absolutely no proof of income needed - it's open for all kids everywhere!

Free for family days - Portland Attractions, good for kids!

Free Days

Museum of Contemporary Craft
Free - first Thursday of every month, 11 a.m.-8 p.m.

Oregon History Museum
Family day - third Saturday of every month; free admission for up to two children with each adult admission paid.

Portland Art Museum
Free- fourth Friday of every month, 5-8 p.m.; always free for ages 17 and under.

Portland Children's Museum
Free - first Friday of every month, 4-8 p.m.

Almost Free

Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI)
$2 - first Sunday of every month.

Oregon Zoo
$4 - second Tuesday of every month.

Thanks to TravelPortland for the list. More options for children on their site!

What to do?

Get in Free!

The county library systems offer 'cultural passes' that allow families to visit a ton of local attractions for free, including the Japanese Garden, the Chinese Garden, and the Children's Museum. Here's how to get your cultural pass:

The Portland Children's Museum is great for little kids, especially on gloomy days. You can take the Max there (same stop as the Zoo). 'Healthier' vending machine food is available - like cottage cheese, apple sauce, sandwiches, etc.

The Library systems are fantastic, regardless of which county you are in. The have tons of free story times, craft times, etc. for younger kids.

More info on Portland Art Museum free admission

Free Days

What to do - Not so free

Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) $2–first Sunday of every month.

Oregon Zoo $4–second Tuesday of every month.

Community Centers

Portland Metro Community centers are a fantastic value. Each is a little different. Some have indoor pools with play fountains and slides (Southwest Community Center, Mt. Scott Community Center). Almost all have kids playtime, crafts, etc.

Oaks Park

Roller Skating all year round! Fun rides in the summertime! Picnic grounds next to the Willamette River in Sellwood

North Clackamas Aquatic Park

Open year round - indoor swimming, hot tub, wave pool, classes and movies!

Sauvie Island

If you feel the need to get your little tyke out of the city, head to Sauvie Island. It's about 20 minutes from downtown Portland. Sauvie Island is full of u-pick farms with seasonal events, such as corn mazes, and petting zoos. There's no gas station on the island, and no real restaurants.

Other Resources / Links

Oregon Mom - Keeps popping up when I do a vanity search. Great section on Indoor Parks and Playtimes in the Portland metro area.

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