Hot ideas to keep kids occupied over the summer holidays

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The summer holidays are nearly here and this city is simply brimming with fun things to do with the little people in your lives. And don’t worry, fun doesn’t have to mean expensive. Check out our guide to find tons of free or inexpensive things to do with the kids this summer…

ALICE’S TEA PARTY!

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Paperfinch Theatre are brewing up a fabulous free tea party on The Moor in Sheffield this month.

Alice will arrive for her surprise un-birthday party, thrown by the jittery March Hare and merry Cheshire Cat at 1pm and 3pm every day from Saturday July 18 to Friday July 24.

There will be an hour of family-friendly entertainment with lots of jam tarts and the chance to join the Queen of Hearts for a round of Flamingo Croquet! The Wonderland characters will also be on hand to greet passers-by with a cup of tea, a slice of cake and a dollop of madcap adventure!

HAVE A PICNIC

What could be nicer than packing up a picnic and taking your little ones out to enjoy the sunshine in one of the city’s hidden gems; an oasis of calm in the middle of the fast-paced city: Sheffield Botanical Gardens.

Entry is free and there are tons of events on throughout the summer, from live performances to Music in the Gardens.

SPLASH AROUND

Visit Millhouses Park for free on a hot day and take the kids to ‘The Splash!’ interactive play area that features an Archimedes screw, hand pumps, seesaws that pump water into a large snaking channel and a water wheel. When they’re ready for a break, check out the boating lake, the children’s playground, riverside walks and Millhouses Café.

There is also Rivelin Valley Water Park, open seven days a week from July 13 until September 7. It features water jets, sprinklers, a bucket drop, paddling pool and water tables.

BIKE RIDES

Bike riding is big in this city, so why not hop on your bikes for one of Sheffield Sky Ride’s local summer courses. This Sunday July 12, a six-mile ride – suitable for all ages - leaves Forge Valley Community School. Stock up on sun cream and visit Go Sky Ride to book your places.

GET CRAFTY

Sheffield Central Library hosts a series of ‘craft-ernoons’ throughout the summer. Join them for a spot of felt-making, rag-rugging or try your hand at creating junk-jewellery or knot bracelets.

Each session is just £3, so book your child a place by visiting Sheffield Libraries

‘Six Weeks of Summer’ kicks off at Concord Park, near Shiregreen, on July 25 with a host of free craft activities run by Activity Sheffield. The craft afternoons will continue every Saturday throughout August between 12pm and 4pm.

SHEFFIELD’S GOT TALENT

Is your child a budding actor? Have they got a great voice? Razzamataz Theatre School offers free taster sessions for children aged two to 18, so they can decide for themselves if the spotlight is for them. Sessions are on Saturdays mornings at Meadowhead Secondary School.

If you fancy trying something together, a free community singing group is held at Upper Wincobank Chapel every other Monday afternoon where you can meet new friends and sing new songs.

FESTIVAL OF FUN

Sheffield Children’s University is hosting the first ever Festival of Fun this month, with over 50 free activities in the city, from chicken-keeping, circus skills and rock climbing, to martial arts, woodland fun and gaming.

You can buy a £2 Children’s University Passport from Sheffield Central Library to access all the activities for free. The Festival kicks off this Saturday at Sheffield Winter Garden from 10am.

LEARN A LITTLE SOMETHING

It’s free entry at Weston Park Museum so take the kids along to teach them a little about the history of the city they live in.

Check out this summer’s special exhibitions and, if there’s time, let them get a bit creative at the Creation Station.

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