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  • Writer's pictureThe West End Mom

The Best Free Activities for Kids in Richmond

Looking for the best, free activities for kids in Richmond? There are a lot of activities and programs that are open to the community, so I've rounded up our favorite, free activities around RVA. From weekly classes like arts and crafts to monthly programs like Toddler Takeover, I've got the best things to do with kids in Richmond that don't cost a dime!

I really like these programs because it's an easy way to meet other families and for children to make friends, each event is led by another adult (or a sports team) so parents can take a back seat, and they are all really fun ways to learn or experience something new with your child.

Heads up: These classes and programs are all parent & me - not drop off activities.

Here are the best, free activities for kids and families in Richmond, Virginia:

1. Ashland Theater's Toddler Take Over: This historic Ashland theater hosts a monthly free event for children and their parents. During the hour long event, various child-appropriate clips and sing-a-longs are played on the screen - clips like Elsa's "Let it Go," the cast of Encanto's "We Don't Talk About Bruno," a scene from Bluey or The Kiboomer's singing about St. Patrick's Day. Children are able to sit in their own seats, a parent's lap or move around the theater. It's really interactive, noisy and fun!

Halfway through the program, a Pamunkey Regional librarian reads a couple stories - these are very interactive and the book pages are displayed on the movie screen. During our recent visit, the librarian also lead movement songs like "Shake You Sillies Out." More sing-a-longs will play for the remainder of the program too.

Ashland Theatre's concession is also open during the event in case you'd like to purchase snacks or drinks!

Ages: This event is best for children ages 0-6 years old and their grownup.

Event Times: This event is usually the second Saturday of each month from 10AM-11AM.

2. Sporting Events: Attending sporting events can really add up, especially when you include ticket costs and eating at the concessions.

To get our fill of sports, we attend free, NCAA games around Richmond. While the colleges will usually have a concession open, you can bring your own food and drinks. I love sporting events as a way to get children interested in athletics, to connect as a family & to support the local college communities. The non-ticketed games also make viewing sports accessible to everyone!

The University of Richmond and Randolph Macon College have non-ticketed sporting events during the regular season. Premier games & tournament games almost always have a ticket.

Spiders' Sports to Check Out: baseball, field hockey, men's lacrosse & women's lacrosse, men's and women's soccer, and men's & women's tennis

Yellow Jackets' Sports to Check Out: baseball, men's soccer & women's soccer, men's volleyball & women's volleyball, field hockey, men's and women's tennis

Event Times: Check out The Richmond Spiders' sports calendar and Randolph Macon's sports calendar to find an event that works for your family!

3. Wee Praise: Second Baptist Church has been hosting Wee Praise for 15 years! These FREE music & movement classes are offered for our littlest friends - babies to 4 years old. Each class is open for the community - you don’t need to be a church member. Children & their grownups sing songs, move to music & play instruments. This class is drop in style, so you do not need to sign up in advance.

Ages: This class is for children 0-4 years old and their grown-up.

Class Times: Classes meet each Wednesday at 10am, 5:00pm & 6:15pm.

4. Nature Play School: The Steward School offers a free, social group for children in preschool through elementary school and their grownup. This program meets outside the Bryan Innovation Lab, and it's a social time to explore, play, and be creative in nature. This hands-on program is led by The Steward School's Bryan Lab program specialist, Megan Young. Some of the activities have been creating a bird's nest, building a spider's web, and working in the community garden.

Ages: This program is best suited for children age 3 through grade 5. Parents must attend with their children.

Class Times: Classes meet every Thursday from 3:15-4:00pm between Labor Day and Memorial Day. There is no need to sign up ahead of time.

5. The Bunny Hive's Books & Bubbles: This social club is for children 4 & younger and their grownups in Richmond, Virginia. The Bunny Hive is specifically designed for families with little kids, and it immediately connects you to other families who are in a similar stage of life. With over 7 different class options, there are plenty of options for experimental learning & playtime!

While classes usually cost $25 per family, Books and Bubbles is a free class each week. It is open to all families - you just need to register in advance.

Ages: This class is for children 0-5 years old and their grown-up.

Class Times: Classes meet each Friday from 3:30-4pm.

6. Home Depot's Kids Workshops: These free kids workshops take place on the first Saturday of each month in all Home Depot locations around Richmond, Virginia. Each workshop has a themed project. All materials, directions and tools are provided by Home Depot, and staff members help families with their project. I love that these are drop-in style workshops - you don’t need a reservation, you can just show up!

Ages: This class is for children of all ages. Children use real tools, so if you have a younger child, parents will need to be more involved.

Class Times: Workshops are on first Saturday of each month from 9am-noon. Depending on your family, this could be a 30 minute to an hour activity.

7. Lowe's Kids Workshops: All Lowe's locations offer a free DIY kids' workshop similar to Home Depot's program. Each month, children get to build a new project, and it's all free! These projects are designed for children 4 and older, but if you've got a younger child, just know you will need to help out a little more.

Registration is required. Lowe's allows walk-ups after 1pm, if there are any remaining kits left.

Ages: This class is for children of all ages. Children use real tools, so if you have a younger child, parents will need to be more involved.

Class Times: Workshops are on first Saturday of each month from 10am-1pm: 10-11am, 11-noon, noon-1pm. Depending on your crew, this could be a 30 minute to an hour activity.

Here are some of the upcoming, free projects for children in Richmond:

  • April 1, 2023 - Build a Bunny Planter

  • May 20, 2023 - Spring Flower Pop-Up Toy

  • June 10, 2023 - Lawn Mower Photo Holder

  • July 15, 2023 - Tic-Tac-Toe Grill Game

  • August 12, 2023 - Rolling Toy Pick-Up Truck

  • September 16, 2023 - Home Team Football Card Holder

  • October 21, 2023 - Fire Truck Toy

  • November 18, 2023 - Thanksgiving Turkey Photo Holder

  • December 16, 2023 - Holiday Delivery Truck

  • January 20, 2024 - My First DIY Toolbox

8. Richmond area Library Programs: City of Richmond, Henrico County, Hanover County, Chesterfield County and Goochland County all host free story time events and other free activities like Lego Club. Chesterfield County Public Libraries also partners with The Richmond Metro Zoo to bring in animals and Mad Science to create hands-on STEM learning opportunities.

9. Henrico County Mobile: Henrico County Parks and Recreation also has a mobile team. They pop up all around the Henrico County's parks with crafts, obstacle courses, and more! For some ideas on parks to visit, check out this guide to Richmond area parks and playgrounds.

Did I miss your favorite, free activity? Email me at . I can't wait to try it with my family!

Looking for activities to try each week with your children? Check out my guide The Best Weekly Activities for Little Kids in RVA.

Looking for more things to do with kids in Richmond? Follow along on our weekly adventures on @thewestendmom !


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