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Archive for the ‘Things to Do’ Category

FREE Home Depot Kids Workshops (2024): Quality time with the kids

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Looking for the next FREE Home Depot Kids Workshop Kit? The Home Depot Workshops for kids have always been a Kidding Around favorite. We’ve been, we love them, and our readers do, too! We’re going to tell you what we love, why we love it, how to register, and some parent tips to help you make the most of your visit to the free workshops for kids at Home Depot.

By the time you’re done, you’ll be an expert on the Home Depot Kids’ Workshops, just like us!


This article includes:


Home Depot Kids Workshop Schedule and news

It’s all free! Home Depot offers workshop kits for kids, including all materials needed to complete the project, totally free. These projects are an amazing way to spend some quality time with the kids, without spending a dime.

June 2024: Home Depot Kids Project- Grill Gift Card Box June 1st

Make Dad something special for Father’s Day with the Home Depot Kids Workshop in June. You’ll make a fun grill box that can hold a gift card. Dad will love it! Visit on June 1st, 2024 from 9 am to 12 pm. Registration in advance is encouraged.

Go Deeper: Add to Your Project This Month

Want to do more with your grill gift box?

In the News

We sat down with local news outlet, Fox Carolina to share our expertise about these workshops.

Experience The Home Depot Kids Workshop: Our Unbiased Parent Review

Kids Worksop Home Depot: Free!

I have always looked forward to the first Saturday of the month for the past several years as it has been my mommy-daughter date at the Home Depot kids workshop. I grab my coffee and my two young kids get their hammers and paintbrushes and we build whatever the kids’ workshop has deemed the project of the month at our local store.” -Kristina

We love taking kids to the Home Depot workshops. We pooled the experiences of our KA Team in this review, so you’ll know what you can expect when you attend.

Here are the top 3 things you need to know about the Home Depot Kids Workshops.

  1. First, the Home Depot has workshops of all kinds for their customers and they have these awesome kids workshops on the first Saturday of every month from 9 am-Noon.
  2. Secondly, know that they provide all the materials you need to make whatever the craft of the day is. Just show up with your kid. With the take-home kits, you’ll have to do some of that yourself.
  3. Third, you, and your child, don’t need any kind of handyman experience. I’ve certainly made mistakes helping my daughters build all sorts of stuff but it’s a great learning time for all of us and it also helps with hand-eye coordination for the kiddos.

See for Yourself! A Video of Our Home Depot Kids Visit

How Kids Workshops at Home Depot Work

Check out your local Home Depot by going to the kids’ workshop link to make sure they have the kids’ workshop available. Most of the stores in the area have them.

How Long is the Home Depot Kids Workshop?

Show up between 9 am and Noon and the nice people at Home Depot will give you a packet that contains the craft, along with a kid’s apron, commemorative pin, and step-by-step instructions. Expect the project to take about 30 minutes to complete, or longer if you really get into it.

Pro tip: You can register online at Home Depot’s website to be sure you get a kit. If inventory levels of the kits are low, those who registered online will get them first. But usually, there isn’t a problem!

What You’ll See When You Arrive

For the kids’ workshops, Home Depot has benches and tables set up where you can get to work at these in-person workshops. They provide the little paintbrushes, the hammers, and the paint. I try to have my kids wear clothes they can get paint on because it can get a little messy, These projects always involve building AND painting.

The kids love these projects and while we’re working, I have to stop myself from helping them too much because it’s so fun. I’ve seen parents really get into it and do all the painting while their child watches. But, it’s a kid’s thing so let the kids do it! And they are learning how to woodwork in the process, which helps build their confidence.

We have made all kinds of stuff together – a birdhouse, a car, a plane, a mailbox, a little sled, a planter (these are all kid-size, not big people, normal-sized things).

What Age is Home Depot Crafting For?

I started taking my oldest daughter when she was 3-years-old, which worked out great and my youngest when she was around two-and-a-half. It really depends on the child and how many kids you can control at once.

I have found it’s an awesome parent-kid date idea, especially for parents whose time is more limited during the workweek.

My daughter has a bunch of commemorative pins from each project on her Home Depot apron, which she wears each time we visit. It’s fun to see all of the projects we’ve created together.

Free Home Depot Kids Workshop Kit, working with Dad on a project

2024 Home Depot Kids Workshop Kit Schedule

Free Home Depot Kids kits are available the first Saturday of the month for completion at in-person workshops.

January 6th, 2024: Delivery Truck
February 3rd, 2024: Valentines Basket
March 2nd, 2024: Butterfly House
April 6th, 2024: Lattice Planter
May 4th, 2024: Bloomin Picture Frame
June 1st, 2024: Grill Gift card Box
July 6th, 2024: Soccer Game
August 3rd, 2024: Whiteboard
September 7th, 2024: Field Goal Game
October 5th, 2024: Fire Rescue Truck
November 2nd, 2024: Pumpkin Tic-Tac-Toe
November 30th, 2024: Cocoa Ornament
December 7th, 2024: Holiday Snow Globe
January 4th, 2025: Piggy Bank

Past Projects Included

Kids workshops 2023 made:

  • Pinball Game
  • Fireworks Bean Bag Toss
  • Treasure Chest
  • Build a Microscope
  • Rescue Floatplane
  • Penguin Photo Ornament
  • Gingerbread House

More Wood Projects for Kids PLUS Party Packs

This section contains Amazon affiliate links.

You can purchase woodcraft kits for children instead of waiting for the free Home Depot kits each month. Help children develop woodworking skills, practice following written directions, get a little creative, and just enjoy some quality time with you!

You will also find some of the Home Depot Kids Kits on sale at Home Depot online. You can even purchase a kid party pack. What a great idea for a kids’ party!

The Home Depot Kids page also has virtual workshops and virtual field trip videos about plants that kids may enjoy.

Show Us Your Work!

Thanks for sharing your awesome Kids’ Workshop Projects. We love them!

Want to send us your project? Email it a photo to Maria@KiddingAroundGreenville.com and you may see it right here!

Home Depot Free Kids’ Workshops FAQ

How do I sign-up for the free Kids’ Workshops at Home Depot?

Sign-up at Home Depot Kids. It just takes a minute and it’s the best way to make sure there will be a kit there for your kids.

Are the Home Depot Kids’ Kits hard to build?

Don’t worry. Picture instructions are included and you don’t need any special prior knowledge of building things to complete the project with your kids. Just go and have a good time. It doesn’t have to be perfect.

Are the Home Depot Kids’ workshops really free?

Yep. Totally free. Sign-up and then spend a little time building something fun with your kids. Few things in life are free anymore and opportunities to do something cool with your kids for free are definitely limited. We love that Home Depot is keeping these workshops free. Go make some memories. You’ll never regret spending time with your kids.

What ages are good for the Free Home Depot Kids’ Workshop

We’d recommend about age 3 and up. At 3, the kids will need lots of help from you. but as kids get older they’ll be able to do more and more of the project independently.

Are there more free kids’ workshops and events at other stores?

  • Lowe’s offers similar Free Kids’ Workshops once a month.
  • And, JCPenney offers free kids craft events each month.



  • Free things to do for kids across the USA

    We LOVE free things to do!

    Find more in the Kidding Around Guide to Free Things to Do for Kids

    So mark your calendars and have fun!

     

    McPherson Park Has a Free Mini-Golf Course in Downtown Greenville, SC

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    Have you been to McPherson Park? This popular park is one of the only parks to have mini-golf in Greenville, SC, and it’s FREE! Be sure to pack your own putters and balls and get ready for a great time. The park is located in downtown Greenville and has long been a family favorite. Find out all you need to know about McPherson Park below!

    McPherson Park Mini Golf in Greenville SC
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    Pick Your Own Blueberries and Blackberries at These Farms Near Greenville, SC

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    Dreaming of ripe blackberries? Interested in upick blueberries? Greenville, SC, and WNC have several places to pick those sweet, juicy berries yourself! We love picking fresh berries and filling up the freezer for this year’s blueberry muffins, oatmeal, blackberry cobbler, pies, and more. Here’s a list of local blueberry and blackberry farms in Greenville where you can pick your own.

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    Where to Enjoy Creek Stomping in the Upstate, SC

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    If you’re from the South, creek stomping may have easily been a wonderful summer memory from your childhood. Now that you’ve got kids of your own, it’s time to show them how to enjoy the fun of playing in the creek, looking for critters. We have gathered an excellent list of creeks near Greenville, SC for you to enjoy with your family. What is creek stomping you ask? Well, it’s really simple. You find a creek and then, you guessed it, you stomp around in it. Or if you prefer, you can splash.

    Creek Stomping Near Greenville South Carolina
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    $1 Tickets: Regal Cinemas Summer Movie Express (2024) & Real Mom Tips

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    Take the kids to the movies this summer for just $1 with Regal Cinemas summer movies during Regal Summer Movie Express! If you’re looking for low-cost summer fun and a break from the heat, look no further than the summer movie deals at Regal Theaters. Here’s everything you need to know to take advantage of these special summer movie deals.

    Looking for Regal kids’ summer movie dollar deals?

    Regal Cinemas has brought back their Summer Movies Express for 2024. Two family-friendly movies are offered each week on Tuesdays and Wednesdays for just $1 each at participating Regal Cinema locations. Times are currently listed as 11 am showings only. Check with your local cinema, more on that below.

    Finding Your Local Regal Cinema and Summer Movies

    Finding your local Regal Cinema for Summer Movie Express 2024 is easy. Just head to Summer Movie Express and type in your zip code at the top of the page in the center. If you’re having trouble finding it, just scroll to the very top Regal logo on the left. The field to enter your zip code is beside it.

    Find Your Summer Movie Express participating Regal location
    Regal Cinemas Location

    What Movies are Playing at Regal’s Summer Movies Express?

    Once you’ve typed in your zip code, all you need to do is go back to the Summer Movie Express page and click on the movie poster for the movie you’d like to see. You’ll then get movie times for theaters near you. You’ll even have the option of purchasing tickets online and of course you can also jut head to the box office.

    It couldn’t be easier to find participating theaters with “kids’ summer movies near me”!

    2024 Summer Express Movie Titles

    What Regal kid’s summer movies are playing in 2024? Here’s the movie lineup!

    • June 11th & 12th, 2024: “Peter Rabbit” and “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish”
    • June 18th & 19th, 2024: “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem” and “Angry Birds 2”
    • June 25th & 26th, 2024: “Despicable Me 3” and “Migration”
    • July 2nd & 3rd, 2024: “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” and “PAW Patrol: The Movie”
    • July 9th & 10th, 2024: “Paw Patrol: The Mighty Movie” and “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse:
    • July 16th & 17th, 2024: “Clifford the Big Red Dog” and “Sonic the Hedgehog”
    • July 23rd & 24th, 2024: “Trolls Band Together” and “Sonic the Hedgehog 2”
    • July 30th & 31st, 2024:  “Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile” and “Kung Fu Panda 3
    • August 6th & 7th, 2024: ““Minions: The Rise of Gru” and “Sing 2”

    Exact movies and times may vary by location.

    Mom Tips: Snacks at the Movies

    You got Regal kids summer movie deals for your tickets, but what about those movie snacks? Here’s how you save money there.

    Often you can’t bring your own snacks and drinks into a movie theater. To save on snacks, take advantage of rewards programs like Regal Crown Club where you earn points towards free concessions and tickets for every dollar you spend.

    Also, you can take advantage of the Regal Snack Pack. Purchase a voucher in advance for the snack pack and get a popcorn, fruits snacks and drink for $7.79

    But, we know that even that can get expensive and add up. So, here are some extra mom methods for geting it done cheap.

    Mom Tip #1: Bring empty sandwich bags or brown paper bags into the theater. Buy one large popcorn and put handfuls of popcorn into the empty bags, so everyone in your family gets their own bag. Often these large popcorns are refillable for free, so, you’ll definitely have enough to go around. Everyone gets their own bag, which makes them happy. And you’re happy because you’re not buying heaps of individual bags of popcorn and very likely spending nearly your entire weekly grocery budget to do it.

    Mom Tip #2: Similarly, bring in empty water bottles and fill them up at a water fountain, or buy a large beverage and split it up by pouring it into those individual bottles.

    Mom Tip #3: Skip the snacks all together. This can be so hard, especially with the bright neon signs and screens with rolling images of popcorn and candy. But. if you tell the kids a special treat is coming after the movie (like going out for ice cream or picking out a special box of popsicles at the store) that might just be enough to skip purchasing movie theater snacks all together.


    Cheap summer movies for kids

    Looking for more low-cost movies?
    Check out our list of Summer Movie Deals.


    Have you gone to a movie at Regal’s Summer Movie Express?

    Mom Review of Infant Swim Resource: What ISR Can Do For Your Kids

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    Wondering about ISR swim lessons in Greenville? Local Mom Erica McCall experienced something many of us have heard about, maybe even seen a media clip or two about, yet never experienced first-hand. Infant Swim Resource (ISR).  See what Erica thought about Infant Swim Resource in her full review!

    *Piece was written in 2015 – please contact swim instructors for current pricing rates

    Baby swimming from one adult to another

    You know when you find something amazing and you wonder how you ever went without knowing about it?  And then you see stuff about it everywhere and you think, “Did I have blinders on?!​”  This is that story for me.

    Infant Swim Rescue (ISR)

    At the start of the summer, I wrote a list of places where you could take swimming lessons.  I included the instructor that I’d planned for our son’s summer, Brennan Townsend with ISR.  I mentioned that it wasn’t the same as swimming lessons, but MAN!  I have to tell you why Infant Swim Resource is definitely the way to go from now until forever.

    Let’s start from the beginning.  ISR was founded in 1966 by a man who had the unfortunate life experience of having a neighbor’s child drown while he was growing up.  He decided right there that it was high time drownings were ended.  He dedicated his studies and career to ensure that Not One More Child Drowns

    Did you know 58% of parents don’t consider drowning a real danger for their child?  Did you know parents are often present when a child drowns?  Here are some extremely scary statistics on drownings.

    Now, ISR is a leader across the globe in survival swim lessons.  Like I said, these aren’t your usual swim lessons.  These are about survival.  They have over 300,000 graduates with over 800 stories of survival of when kids had to put their skills to use during an accident and they were successful!

    Children from 6 months and up can learn different skills with ISR, starting with the basic float and wait for help.  My son’s age group learns the swim-float-swim sequence to get to safety.  Children a little older learn this as well as strong swimmer skills that allow them to enjoy safe water play.

    My Family’s Experience with ISR

    My son took lessons for 6 weeks and 1 day.  *We paid a $105 non-refundable registration fee and then $150 upfront for the first two weeks of lessons.  *Each week cost $75, and there were no surprise fees in there anywhere.  In fact, we got a code for a discount to use in their swim store once we’d registered.  (Rain delays were factored in with pricing, so there was no worry about my paying for lessons the rain caused us to miss.) 
    *Please note: these prices were from 2015. Prices may vary with the instructor.

    Oh yeah- and each lesson is about 8-10 minutes, with most of it being one-on-one direct instruction pool time and a small part spent discussing the sheet you fill out on your child’s eating/sleeping/pooping. 

    Yes.  8-10 minutes a day, 5 days a week. 
    It is NOT convenient, but c’mon.  Is your child’s safety really about your convenience? 
    Nope.  On the plus side- that was just enough daily time for me to get a lovely tan this summer without burning!

    We had to have a swim diaper and two or three towels each day in order to have a double layer of towels in between wet baby and the pool edge.  I was pretty surprised about that until I learned why- germ prevention.  I was totally on board after that.  We ended up using our coupon to also buy a long sleeved swim shirt from the ISR store because I didn’t want to put on sunscreen every single day.  Love that thing!

    The first three days went pretty much like I thought they would.  He sputtered a little when he had to put his face in because he didn’t have much breath control yet.  He didn’t like having to lay flat for the float.  None of that was surprising though because it was all what I already saw at bath time or when we swam at the pool ourselves.

    Then day four happened.  He decided it was high time he demanded that he never have to float again.  He cried.  THE. ENTIRE. TIME.  Yep.  I felt terrible, but mostly for our instructor!  I know what a pain it is to try to concentrate when they’re unhappy, so I figured she was miserable.  Not so.  Apparently, most kids experience days where they are just not cooperating and cry throughout the lesson.  I ended up seeing a lot of different age kids (elementary to baby) cry at some point or other during the weeks of lessons.  Our little guy only cried for about a week.  Now I know that sounds like a long time, but let me just tell you what a big faker my kid was.  He’d sing about “simmie-poo” and “simmie-yessens” and ask me aaaaaall day when we would go, cry during the lesson, and then say “simmie poo fun” when we got in the car.  *facepalm* So- don’t think it was some sort of traumatic week and he must hate the water now.  Nope.  He just didn’t like having to do something he didn’t want to do and then he got over it.

    After our week of being cuh-razy, everything was fantastic.  He would ask me every day when we would get to go and then he’d ask for his teacher… and then ask when we could go… and then say he loved his teachers… you get the picture.  He loved going to ISR.

    He had some days where he reverted to an old mindset instead of following directions, but for the most part I felt like I saw progress every single day.

    Let me break down what they did every day.  They had four things they did together each day (which became a broken record mantra for my son to ask me about): he’d swim to the steps, he’d float, he’d grab the bar, and he’d get to her hand.  That translated into him saying “fwim thepths, fwoat, bawr, hannnd” approximately seventy-four thousand, nine hundred three times each day because he was so excited about going and then about what all he did after.  The different areas were all building blocks that allowed him to learn the different means of swimming, floating, and rescue that were available.  It required him to be actively looking in the water for a way to get out.  In order to graduate, he had to be able to do a swim-float-swim sequence to get from the teacher to an exit area.  It was truly amazing to watch as all these steps scaffolded together in order to form a survival swim.

    By the time graduation day came, he had to perform the swim-float-swim sequence in full winter clothes.  Many people questioned this when I told what we’d be doing, but think about it.  How often do kids drown in just a bathing suit?  How often do we see on the news that a kid wandered into a neighbor’s pond or pool, meaning they were wearing whatever they’d been dressed in?  Exactly.  They need to be able to do the skills they learned regardless of what they had on.  I dressed our son in a long sleeved shirt and the thickest jeans we own.  Why? I wanted to be darn sure he could still do it, even if his legs were way heavier than usual.

    It worked!  He was given all his usual tasks to complete, plus a couple that were new to the last week of lessons, including new ‘placements’ from different positions that simulated ways he might enter the water.  Not flung or dunked or anything, just gently placed in different positions to ensure they could regain a sense of where up was and problem-solve, even if he was a bit disoriented.  Man!  It was amazing to watch our little bug, not even two  years old, get himself to the surface, relax into a calm float, and then flip himself over to kick towards safety.  He even stopped along the way to flip back into his float to take a breath.

    You wanna talk about being a proud mama!  I definitely teared up watching his success.  In just six short weeks, we’d gone from liking swimming to loving it and being totally confident in how to be safe in water.

    Now that it’s behind us…

    I do not regret one cent of one dollar that we spent on these lessons.  I do not regret one minute it cost me or one ounce of gas we paid for.  I can’t imagine how I ever questioned whether or not these would be right for us or if the cost was worth it.  IT WAS and then some.  I even saw a five year old, who took close to two weeks to put her face in the water, end up swimming all the way across the pool to the wall at the deep end!  I also saw a little baby doing his float perfectly.  (I loved seeing the different aged kids learn all their skills!  Such confidence blossomed in each of them!)

    There are now several instructors in the upstate area, which is wonderful since you’re going to want to get on the wait-list for these ASAP, even if your kids have taken swim lessons already.  Remember- these are about survival for when the worst happens as well as how to enjoy the water safely when swimming.  I feel a thousand times better about his safety now that I’ve watched him grow into a confident, capable little fish.  He’s one of over 300,000 graduates from the ISR program and he has the medal to prove he can do it!

    Visit infantswimupstate.com to get your child signed up.  Tell them Kidding Around Greenville sent ya’ and enjoy watching your little fish grow!

    Chill Out or Feel the Rush at Fins Up Water Park at Lanier Islands 

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    For a fantastic summer experience that is great for the whole family from teens to little kids and parents, and two hours from the Upstate, check out Fins Up Water Park at Margaritaville at Lanier Islands, Georgia. We checked it out and have all the details!

    Thanks to Discover Lanier Islands for providing media tickets for this review. 

    If there’s anything that will have me packing up the car and kids and hitting the road during the summer, it’s a good water park, preferably one with some heart-pounding slides, a big wave pool, and places to hang out and relax. Fins Up Water Park at Lanier Islands, Georgia hits all those marks plus went beyond my expectations!

    This place is a lot of fun and it’s really the perfect place to spend a weekend or summer trip with your family because it has something for everyone – little kids, teens, and parents. 

    Water slide at Fins Up Waterpark
    Water slide at Fins Up Waterpark

    About Fins Up Water Park

    Fins Up is part of Margaritaville at Lanier Islands and if you’ve read any of our other stories about our trips to Margaritaville properties, you know they are our favorite places to visit. The atmosphere at Margaritaville properties is just one that really encourages you to relax and enjoy your family. It’s chill and easy-going and all the things that your regular life at home isn’t (for the most part). 

    I really didn’t know what to expect with the water park because it wasn’t one that was on my radar. I had heard about Lanier Islands and had hoped to go but did not know much about the water park – boy was I pleasantly surprised. 

    Wave Pool at Fins Up Water Park

    The wave pool is huge and the waves are exactly like the ocean except way better because no sharks. 

    There is plenty of seating available if you want to just hang out and watch your kids. We saw some people reading books and looking happy. They had reason to be – it was a beautiful day at a beautiful spot. 

    The wave pool stops producing waves every few minutes and then starts up again. It’s a blast. 

    Wave pool at Fins Up Water Park
    Wave pool at Fins Up Water Park

    Rides at Fins Up Water Park

    New for 2024 is Apocalypso—Georgia’s first adrenaline-fueled waterslide coaster. It has two big drops where your stomach goes up into your heart and you fly up a giant wall and then slide back back. It’s 418 feet of fantastic fun. We did it a couple of times and absolutely loved it. 

    There are several waterslides, including three new ones: Serpentine Storm, Dreamsicle Dive, and Mango Mania. These are in the same area as Apocalypso and you can choose to go down them when you get to the top of the platform. 

    Mat Slide ride at Fins Up Water Park
    Mat Slide ride at Fins Up Water Park

    The Apocalypso is definitely one of the more heart-pounding ones but there are a couple others I dared not try like the Racing Water, Intimidator, and Triple Threat. These are slides where you do some kind of free fall water slide action that would probably give me a near fear of heights and falling. I’ll do all the other ones though! 

    My oldest daughter and I loved the mat waterslide, Splashdown, where we rode headfirst down a slide on a mat. It was awesome. 

    Cat 4 is a tubing adventure near the LandShark Bar & Grill and past the Aquatic Adventure where you can race your friends and family to the lake on a giant tube. 

    Both my daughters and I loved Raging River, an old-school water slide with lots of twists and turns and some smaller drops. You end up getting dunked in a small pool at the end. 

    Aquatic Adventure

    I had to hold my daughters back from sprinting towards the aqua park – Aquatic Adventure – as soon as they saw it when we walked into the park. We absolutely love these floating obstacle courses and have done all the ones we could find in South Carolina and North Georgia so we were more than happy to add this one to the list. This one was by far the largest aqua course we have ever done in terms of how many pieces of equipment there were there.

    I was completely exhausted after 15 minutes or so because these things, while fun, are so hard to not slip around and climb on the obstacles. It’s such a blast though and we loved every minute. You can go on as many times as you like. 

    Witbit at Fins Up Water Park
    Witbit at Fins Up Water Park

    Kids have to be 48″ for the floating obstacle course. Children under 10 must be accompanied by a guardian and be at least 48″ tall. Life jackets are required and are provided.

    Areas of the Water Park for Smaller Kids

    Little kids will certainly enjoy the wave pool, even if they stay by the entrance and just play in the water. But if they want to get a little more action in, there is Parakeet Springs, which has mini-waterslides, splash fountains, and Wiggles Waves (a mini wave pool). 

    Fin Dunker Bucket is a cute area next to the LandShark Bar & Grill where kids wait to get dumped on by a huge bucket of water. It’s hilarious to watch. 

    Kids also will love the sandy beach. There are small areas of the lake to splash around in but the beach is enormous with plenty of space to run around or just hang out and relax in beach chairs. 

    Food at Fins Up Water Park

    There are plenty of food and drink options at the water park. You can get everything from burgers to chicken tenders to nachos to a famous margarita at the Tiki Bar on the beach. 

    Ice cream is also easy to come across! You really don’t need to leave the water park at all since there is a lot to do and you can eat there. 

    Tips on Enjoying Fins Up Water Park

    Even though I’ve only gone one time, I have a few tips to share on how to enjoy this awesome park. 

    Look at the height requirements beforehand for the rides you’d like go on or that your kids would like to go on. Then you can plan where to go and no one will be surprised. 

    Look at the map of the water park beforehand and when you get there. I’m embarrassed to say this but my daughters and I completely missed like five water slides because we thought the water park ended at the beach at the Aquatic Adventure. It didn’t. It kept going and we didn’t even find out until later on when we went to have dinner at the LandShark Grill.

    Locker rentals are available. We didn’t do this but we usually rent lockers when we go to water parks. There weren’t a lot of people there so I figured I’d take my chances with a towel and beach chair. If it was more crowded, I would have rented a locker. Rentals are between $12-$20.

    Be prepared to walk. While the park isn’t as big as a theme park, it does require a lot of walking, especially when you’re carrying tubes up hills to get to the launch point. Some of these hills are steep so take breaks if you need. 

    Parking is $20. Guests entering Margaritaville at Lanier Islands are required to pay $20 for parking. That fee is waived for season pass holders. 

    Make sure you have a credit card or some other cashless way to pay at the park. Cash is not accepted there. 

    Try to go during the week or early/late in the season. We went the second day of their 2024 season and were able to ride as many rides as we wanted without hardly any wait times. I imagine this place will be a lot busier as summer fully hits and on weekends and holidays.

    You can reenter on the same day. If you want to leave the park for any reason and come back, you can certainly do that as long as you still have your wristband on.

    Beach at Fins Up Water Park
    Beach at Fins Up Water Park

    Honest Mom Review: Fins Up Water Park

    I just love water parks and Fins Up Water Park was no different. I really enjoyed the water slides and aqua course and having fun with my daughters was a memory we will get to share for years. Some of the slides were kinds I had not seen before – these were made before the more modern ones of steel and plastic – and while I never felt unsafe, it was just a new and fun experience. 

    All the staff was really nice and it was easy to see they were well-trained on safety protocols. They always made sure the slides were clear before sending down the next person or group. And the lifeguards on the Aquatic Adventure were paying attention to everyone to ensure safety. 

    My daughters (ages 13 and 9) really had a blast here. It wasn’t as big as some of the other water parks we have been to but that made it all the more charming and fun honestly. We didn’t feel rushed and knew we could hang out at the beach or wave pool if we wanted some downtime. Also, because the water park is part of Lanier Islands, it was such a great place to enjoy as a family as part of our short visit there knowing we only had to drive a few minutes to the lake house where we were staying for a couple nights. 

    Tickets and Admission to Fins Up Water Park

    You can purchase your tickets online and if you purchase more than 24 hours ahead of time, you’ll receive $10 off adult admission. Regular day-of admission is $59.99+ tax ages 7+ and $44.99+ tax ages 4-7. If you purchase ahead of time, adult tickets are $49.99+ tax. 

    Until May 31, 2024, Fins Up Water Park is offering season passes for $99.99 plus a free Pre-K Kid’s Pass for ages 3-5 by purchasing two regular-price passes.

    Once Memorial Day Weekend hits, they are open daily until Labor Day Weekend most days 11 am – 7 pm. Check the Fins Up website as some days they have later hours. 

    Where to Stay Near Fins Up Water Park

    Use the map below to find places to stay nearby!
    Through an affiliate relationship with Stay22, Kidding Around earns when you book through this map!

    Fins Up Water Park 
    7650 Lanier Islands Pkwy, Buford, GA 
    Fins Up Water Park Website | Fins Up Facebook

    Discover Lake Lanier

    There’s lots more to love about Lake Lanier! Check out our Kidding Around Travel Guide to Lake Lanier.

    Georgia Travel Guide

    Traveling to Georgia? Don’t miss our Kidding Around Travel Guide to Georgia, full of guides to popular cities, things to do, places to stay, restuarants, and more!

    Fluor Field: Greenville Drive Baseball and Year-Round Events to Enjoy

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    Summer is here and Greenville Drive Baseball is in full swing at Fluor Field. Greenville, SC has one of the most adored minor league baseball teams, but Fluor Field also hosts several fantastic events throughout the year.  This micro replica of Fenway Park even has a mini version of the Green Monster, how cool! Find out why Greenville’s beloved minor league ballpark has become a top gathering spot for Greenvillians and visitors to the area. 

    Fluor Field Greenville, SC: Greenville Drive Baseball and special events

    Gateway to Baseball: Special Features of Fluor Field, Greenville Drive

    The North End entrance at Fluor Field is welcoming, with a digital Greenville Drive marquee sign and an expanded brick and stone paved plaza as the backdrop to giant baseballs all in a row makes for an attractive and fun design element. Kids love to climb them and also a favorite spot for selfies.

    In the middle of all this ruckus and seeming right at home, is the statue of “Shoeless” Joe Jackson which used to be outside a restaurant downtown. Did you know that before Jackson became a famous ballplayer, he was a mill worker at Brandon Mills in West Greenville?

    With his connection to Greenville’s past, “Shoeless” Joe’s new location is a great choice. The statue highlights the city’s mill town past and memories of old textile baseball leagues. Ballgames were already a popular form of recreation and community building back then.

    Entrance of Fluor Field, Greenville , SC

    On Augusta Street, if you decide to enter through the East Entrance of Fluor Field, You can sit by the bar or at the picnic tables and have a great view of the action behind first base. NOTE: On the weekends, inflatable attractions are usually located at the East entry, where junior players can hit a few balls for FREE.

    Greenville Drive Team Store and New Ticket Booths

    Once you arrive, you can find will-call ticket booths alongside the Greenville Drive team store. Rolling barn doors offer more browsing space for souvenir shopping. Another piece of trivia, did you know that the store used to be a 1920s firehouse? Shop and have a look at the original tin ceilings.

    Fluor Field box office, Greenville, SC

    Front Porch Lounge at Fluor Field: Greenville, SC

    Fluor Field has often been referred to as downtown’s “front porch.” As a nod to this, the Drive has turned its front office at the corner of Field and Markley Streets into the Front Porch lounge, a 2,700-square-foot hospitality area for Drive Ticket Plan holders. The lounge offers comfortable indoor seating, a full-service bar, flat-screen televisions, and other fun ballpark perks.

    Event Venues: The Rooftop and Champion Lounge

    One thing for sure, if you are catching a game, you can’t help but glance across the field and admire the Rooftop, and wonder, “How did the people get up there?” The Rooftop space is an events venue atop the adjacent Fieldhouse building with its own express elevator. This area can accommodate up to 75 people, providing picturesque views of the ballpark and downtown Greenville. 

    The Rooftop even has a private food and beverage menu. Another venue is the Champions Club. The Club offers over 3,700 square feet of space and can accommodate groups of 100-300 people. The space is air-conditioned and even has outdoor seating, so it makes a great location for a year round event space.

    Fluor Field view of the baseball diamond.

    5 Tips for Visiting the Greenville Drive With Kids

    Since moving to the Upstate, KAG guest contributor Lauren Lochel had been looking forward to visiting Flour Field and seeing the Greenville Drive play a game. Lucky for us, they did not disappoint! She shares with us her trips and tricks for enjoying a Greenville Drive game with your family.

    Greenville Drive at Fluor Field

    1. Check for Promotions

    It happened to be “Bark in the Park” during our visit, which worked out perfectly for our family! All the dogs were on leashes and very friendly! This not only provided a good distraction for our 22 month old, but we enjoyed seeing all the furry friends as well. However, if you have allergies or a child with a fear of dogs, this would not be a great game for you to attend! This information can easily be found on the Greenville Drive website.

    2. Take Advantage of FREE Trolley Rides from your Parking Lot!

    While parking at County Square is no longer available, you can park at one of the parking lots near a trolley pick-up location: lots along Pendleton Street, low-cost City Parking garages, as well as the paved lots located on or near River Street. The trolleys run every 10 minutes before and after the game and every 15 minutes during the game. And a bonus—the Trolley runs throughout the entire game so whenever you need to head home, just head back out and catch a ride back to your car!

    3. Take What You Need

    The Greenville Drive has changed their bag policy so you’ll want to read it closely before you go to the stadium. Gone are the days of being able to walk right in with a diaper bag stuffed with everything you care to bring!

    4. Be Aware in the Play Area

    With good intentions, the rules state that children should be under a certain height and should be supervised while playing. Unfortunately, neither of these things were happening on Sunday afternoon! My husband and I took a couple of turns taking our daughter to run and play, but it didn’t last long because it was a little chaotic! Stick close by your little one if they need a play break…this is not an area I would advise one to sit and watch!

    5. Get Tickets in Advance

    The Sunday we went also happened to be Masters Sunday so the crowd was a little lighter than usual. My husband went back on a Friday (fireworks) night with his brother and the game was sold out! Standing room only!

     Has your family been to a Greenville Drive game? What tips do you have?

    Family Friendly Year-Round Events at Fluor Field

    Fluor Field has made a name for itself that is much more than baseball thanks to West End Events at Fluor Field. There are events throughout the year that help there, some of which are super family-friendly. Here is a list of some of the more popular events to check out!

    • Easter Eggstravaganza: Every spring you can watch your kid race across the field collecting as many eggs as their little basket can hold. There is typically a picnic, pictures with the Easter Bunny, and tons of kid-friendly activities to enjoy.
    • 4th of July at Fluor Field: Every Independence Day, you can watch a baseball game and fireworks in celebration of our nation’s biggest celebratory holiday. There is special programming this day for military appreciation, including flyovers and more!
    • Reading All Stars: If your kid participates in a summer reading program through their local library, chances are they will receive a ticket to the Reading All Stars game with Greenville Drive.
    • The Green Monster Mash: Enjoy kid-friendly Halloween activities, including inflatables, face paintings, costume contests, and more during this annual event.
    • Kringle Holiday Village: Get into the holiday spirit with this holiday market, fun inflatables, and Santa!

    Plan a trip to Fluor Field: Greenville, SC

    945 South Main Street
    Greenville, SC 29601
    864.240.4528
    See their season schedule here.

    We hope we’ve enticed you to visit Fluor Field at the West End. Let’s root, root, root for the Greenville Drive!

    15+ Free Things to Do in Downtown Greenville, SC

    Entertaining the kids can become expensive so perhaps you’re looking for free things to do in Downtown Greenville, SC! Luckily for us, there are lots of free things to do in Greenville your kids will enjoy. We’ve put together a handy list of free activities to check out, including everything from museums you can visit for free and a new scavenger hunt downtown!

    One of the best things our family loves about downtown Greenville, not discounting all the awesome well-planned community events, of course, is that one can still enjoy a simple stroll down Main Street without having to spend big bucks. In fact, if you pack a picnic and combine it with the activities listed below, you can have a completely spend-free day. Are you up for this fun challenge? We tried to be a little more creative with this list and come up with some new ideas. If you have any more ideas, please leave us a comment. We love hearing from you!

    Free things to do downtown Greenville SC

    This article includes:
    Free Museums in Downtown Greenville
    Mice on Main
    Butterflies on Main & Cancer Survivors Park
    Free Mini Golf at McPherson Park
    Falls Park, Liberty Bridge, and the Medusa Tree
    Downtown Greenville Gardens
    Shakespeare in the Park
    Moonlight Movies
    Downtown Splash Pad
    Free Concert Series
    Greenville Saturday Market
    Street Performers
    Downtown Trolley
    Swamp Rabbit Trail
    Cleveland Park
    Unity Park
    PAL Center
    Free Story Times at Local Bookstores
    Free Family-Friendly Events
    First Friday Events

    Free Museums in Downtown Greenville

    There’s a reason why Greenville County Museum of Art has always been top-rated for things to do in Greenville. Not only is it free, but they have public events on Sundays, from 2-3 pm for the public to enjoy. This is in addition to all the amazing art on their walls. At GCMA, you can enjoy a free jazz concert, a sketching session, or a family art adventure!

    Other museums that offer free admission are the Shoeless Joe Jackson Museum, The Confederate Museum, and the Military History Center of the Carolinas by Runway Park.

    Exterior of Greenville County Museum of Art

    Mice on Main

    Nine mice sculptures inspired by the book Goodnight Moon are hidden along Main Street. You can download a list of clues online and there is a cute picture book found in many of the local stores along Main Street such as the Mast General Store to help you on your journey.

    Butterflies on Main and Cancer Survivors Park

    If you have a little one, Mice on Main never gets old. But what about the older child or parent who has repeatedly found all the mice? Here’s another public sculpture hunt for you, also made of metal, but will have you and your kids looking up instead of down. All along the east side of Main Street towards Cancer Survivors Park is a trail of more than 130 butterflies by local artist, Yuri Tsuzuki. This is not an official hunt, but it’s quite fun when one spots the metal yet graceful-looking butterflies (about the size of one’s hand) in the most unexpected places like a lamp post or shop wall. Hint: Start at Coffee Street.

    McPherson Park putt putt

    Free Mini Golf

    Bring your own putters and golf clubs for a round of free, 18-hole mini-golf course at the popular McPherson Park in downtown Greenville.

    Falls Park, Liberty Bridge, and the Medusa Tree

    Don’t miss Greenville’s iconic Liberty Bridge and Falls Park that span the Reedy River Falls. Across the park near the road, you will also find the Medusa Tree (“Root Tree”) which is a favorite photo spot for visitors to Greenville.

    Many locals enjoy a sweet treat or cup of coffee from Spill the Beans located at the suspension bridge entrance while visiting this park. Public restrooms are located outside Spill the Beans.

    Greenville, SC's Medusa Tree
    Medusa Tree

    Downtown Greenville Gardens

    Rock Quarry Garden

    This beautiful garden is hidden but has been a favorite photo spot for locals for years.

    Kilgore-Lewis Garden

    This private garden is open to the public and is a lesser-known beautiful place to explore in downtown Greenville.

    The Children’s Garden at Linky Stone Park

    This small park will enrich the five senses with its sensory gardens, fairy-tale-inspired structures, and child-friendly sculptures.

    See our complete list of Greenville gardens for more information.

    Upstate Shakespeare at the Park

    The Warehouse Theatre’s Upstate Shakespeare Festival is the ultimate downtown Greenville experience and yes, free! A treat for families with middle school kids or any child who enjoys theater. What better way to introduce theater than under the stars. It also helps to have the option to make a quiet exit without the regret of costly tickets. Though for the record, this theater group is definitely worth paying for.

    Moonlight Movies at Falls Park

    During the months of September and October, you can head to Falls Park to watch an outdoor movie for free on Thursday evenings at sundown. Be sure not to forget the bug spray as you will be near the Reedy River.

    Downtown Splash Pad {currently closed}

    Put on the bathing suits and take the kids to the downtown train-themed splash pad, located near Falls Park in RiverPlace. Public restrooms are available beside the splash pad.

    Splash Pad in downtown Greenville, SC
    Downtown Greenville splash pad

    Free Concert Series

    Downtown Greenville offers a free concert series during the warmer months.

    Greenville Saturday Market

    The Greenville Saturday Market offers a plethora of vendors and has a children’s area and activities on select Saturdays from May to October.

    Swamp Rabbit Trail

    Hike, bike, or run along the Swamp Rabbit Trail in downtown Greenville. This popular part of the trail can take you from Linky Stone Park, through Falls Park and Cancer Survivors Park, to Cleveland Park and Greenville Zoo.

    Cleveland Park

    This popular park outside the Greenville Zoo includes one of Greenville’s top playgrounds as well as great paths for biking and several picnic shelters.

    Playground at Cleveland Park
    Cleveland Park

    Unity Park

    The huge Unity Park is one of Greenville’s newest parks and it’s easy to see why it’s so popular: it’s gorgeous. Families will love the wide-open spaces, playgrounds, shelters, paved trails, and of course, the splash pad.

    Unity Park in downtown Greenville SC

    Enjoy Street Performers

    We do love our walks down through Falls Park and back to Main street. On the weekends, we pause at each street performer and enjoy what they have to offer along Ivey Square on North Main. Have you seen the Hello Kitty drummer or the young magician performing algebra card tricks? We recently chanced upon a caricaturist who will draw your portrait in minutes. Remember to wear comfortable shoes!

    Downtown Trolley

    Don’t feel like walking all the way to West End Greenville? Well, there is a free option to try. You can enjoy a tour of downtown on the charming Greenville Trolley on Main Street.

    Downtown Greenville trolly

    PAL Center at Greenville Main Library

    Open at select times, your young children can play at the PAL (Play and Learning) Center at the Greenville Hughes Main Library.

    Free Story Times at Local Bookstores

    Young readers get engaged with the world of books at several local bookstores’ storytimes. Be sure to call ahead to confirm storytime details.

    Free Events Downtown

    Downtown Greenville has a number of annual free events that are fun for the whole family. Some of our favorites are the annual Duck Derby, iMAGINE Upstate, Artisphere, and Fall for Greenville. See our calendar for a list of current events happening each week. From March to September, Main Street Fridays happen from 5:30-9:30 pm downtown, and every Thursday from 5:30-8:30 pm from March-August is Downtown Alive in NOMA Square. These events feature live entertainment for free as well as a kid’s area with bounce houses for a small fee.

    First Friday Art Events

    Calling all art lovers! Every First Friday of the month, dozens of art galleries open up to the public from 6-9 pm, and sometimes there are free crafts for kids. Owned by a local mom and artist, Open Art Studios on Main Street is one of our favorites.

    BONUS TIP: Visit the Children’s Museum and the Upcountry History Museum for Free

    The Hughes Main Library at Heritage Green is well-loved by local parents for its vast collection of books and special events. As an added plus, Greenville residents can also borrow a museum pass to The Children’s Museum (family admission for up to two adults and four children of the same household) or the Upcountry History Museum (free admission for 2 adults and 4 children) both conveniently located right beside the library.

    Also, families with an EBT card are eligible for $3 tickets at The Children’s Museum of the Upstate with their card (for up to 4 family members).

    Parking for Free in Downtown Greenville

    Parking in Greenville is affordable on weekdays at any of the public garages and the public parking is often free on weekends and select holidays. During the weekday, you can often find free 2-hour street parking. If events are currently happening, you may need to pay an event fee of approximately $6-10 to park downtown. You’ll find more information about where to park in our Parking Guide to Greenville, SC.

    Free Things to Do in Greenville, SC

    For even more free activities see our giant list of 50+ free things to do in Greenville County.

    What is your favorite FREE thing to do in Greenville?

    Enjoy the Outdoors & Fishing at Pleasant Ridge County Park

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    Have you visited Greenville’s Pleasant Ridge County Park? Just north of Travelers Rest in Marietta, is Pleasant Ridge Park—one of my family’s favorite parks, although we’re nowhere close to exploring all it has to offer. Part of the Greenville County Parks Department, this beautiful, historic space has hiking and biking trails, a fishing lake, a playground, and several historical markers.

    Pleasant Ridge County Park near Greenville, South Carolina

    Enjoy the outdoors? Check out our Ultimate Guide to Hiking Near Greenville, SC, with lots of hiking options for all ages and abilities.

    Things to Do at Pleasant Ridge County Park

    Pleasant Ridge Park has several amenities to enjoy. Scattered throughout the park are picnic tables, picnic shelters, basketball courts, public restrooms, and several small brooks and streams. There is a playground at Pleasant Ridge, but it is small; just two swings and a metal merry-go-round, with sand as ground cover.

    Hiking at Pleasant Ridge Park

    Pleasant Ridge Park has both easy and moderate trails, ranging from .03 miles to 6 miles, suitable for hikers and bikers.

    Hiking at Pleasant Ridge County Park

    Just off the playground is the steep entrance to the Leroy Smith Nature Trail, which takes you to a pretty little waterfall near an old moonshine site, Pleasant Ridge Falls, and the remains of an old gristmill. This is somewhat of a rugged trail, not appropriate for strollers, bikes, or anyone who needs assistance walking. The beginning of the trail is steep wooden steps which my three-year-old handled very well. You can access the fishing lake by taking the 0.3-mile Leroy Smith Lake Trail right off the nature trail.

    The 6-mile JFA Trail is open to hikers and mountain bikers and follows a rotating directional schedule. The trail is open 7 days per week, and you can access it from Shelter #1. Be sure to check the information boards located throughout the park to find updates on the trails. If you are looking for a gentler climb to the upper sections of the trails, take Sassy’s Pass off of the JFA trail.

    Fishing at the Lake

    Fishing is allowed at the lake, and is open to anyone. Ages 16 and older must have a fishing license. The park does have limitations on how many fish you can take home, and you can find those guidelines on the Pleasant Ridge Park website. You will also find a weekly Trout Stocking Summary. The summary can come in handy when knowing what to expect in terms of available catch. The park does not allow boats, so off-bank fishing is what you will expect.

    Quick Review of Pleasant Ridge Park

    Favorites:

    • Great hiking with a variety of trails
    • Several natural water features
    • Woods setting

    Drawbacks:

    • Small playground
    Waterfall in the creek at Pleasant Ridge County Park in Greenville County

    Special Events at Pleasant Ridge County Park

    Pleasant Ridge is also home to Camp Courage for children with cancer and other blood diseases. It is also home to Camp Spearhead for children with special needs.

    A retreat center, which includes dining lodges, meeting rooms, and cabins for overnight stays, is available to rent for weddings, reunions, and other events.

    Looking for more parks in Greenville? Don’t miss our Ultimate Guide to Parks in Greenville County!

    What is your favorite thing to do at Pleasant Ridge Park?

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