San Antonio Summer on a Budget: Free and Cheap Events for the Whole Family

Summer 2017 is here! Our beloved Alamo City is full of family-friendly activities that are easy on the wallet. We’ve compiled a list of free and cheap events across the city for kids of all ages. Take advantage of our great city this summer!

Free Admission to Museums

The Witte: FREE! Tuesdays from 3:00–8:00 P.M.

San Antonio Museum of Art: FREE! Tuesdays from 4:00–9:00 P.M. and Sundays from 10:00 A.M.–noon

The DoSeumFREE! The first and third Tuesdays of the month are free for the first 1,500 guests from 6:30–8:30 P.M. In the 2017 summer months, free dates are June 6th and 20th, July 4th and 18th, and August 1st and 15th.

The McNay Art MuseumFREE! Thursdays from 4:00–9:00 P.M., free general admission (special exhibits: $10)

Briscoe Western Art MuseumFREE! Tuesdays from 4:00–9:00 P.M.  

Summer Movies

Santikos Theaters: FREE! Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10:00 A.M. from June 6–August 2 at seven area locations

Regal Theaters: $1 per ticket! Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10:00 A.M. from June 6–August 2 at three area locations

Alamo Drafthouse: $1–3 per ticket! Monday–Thursday at one of the three area locations. Showtimes are at 10:30 or 11:00 A.M.  

Movies by Moonlight at Travis Park: FREE! Tuesday nights, pre-entertainment at 7:30 P.M., movies start at 8:30 P.M. More information here.  

Free Movies at the Marquee (Mission Marquee): FREE! Various evening dates throughout June, July, and August. Movies start after dusk.  

HEB Cinema on the Plaza at The Tobin Center: FREE! Every second Friday, Plaza opens at 7:00 P.M., movie starts at 8:00 P.M. Summer dates: June 6th, July 14th, and August 11th.


Summer Reading Programs

Barnes and Noble: FREE! Return this completed form to Barnes and Noble for a free book. 

Chuck E. Cheese: FREE! Return this completed form to Chuck E. Cheese for 10 free tokens.  

Half Price Books: FREE! Return this completed form to Half Price Books.

HEB Buddy Reading Program: FREE! Pick up forms at your HEB.

San Antonio Public Library: FREE! Register online and log books throughout the summer to earn a free book.  


Splash Pads

Yanaguana Gardens at Hemisphere Park: FREE! Open daily from 7:00 A.M.–midnight.

The Pearl Splash Pad: FREE! Open daily.

Pearsall Park: FREE! Open daily 9:00 A.M.–9:00 P.M.

Fischer Park in New Braunfels: FREE! Open daily 9:00 A.M.–9:00 P.M.

San Antonio swimming pools: FREE! 23 locations; see website for information on specific pools.  



The Twig Book Shop: FREE! Summer Fridays at 10:00 A.M. and 11:00 A.M.

San Antonio Public Library: FREE! Multiple daily options throughout the city.  

Barnes and Noble: FREE! Wednesdays at 11:00 A.M. at La Cantera location and Ingram Park location, and Saturdays at 11:00 A.M. at Northwoods location.  



SAS Factory Tour  

FREE! The SAS Factory offers free tours Monday–Friday. Read more here

San Antonio Missions

FREE! All San Antonio Missions have free admission. 


San Antonio Public Library

FREE! The San Antonio Public Library has multiple free event and activities each week throughout the city.  


San Antonio Parks 

FREE! San Antonio is home to more than 240 city parks. Click here to read ACMB’s guide to San Antonio Parks.  

FREE! Yanaguana Garden’s Weekend Youth Fitness Program every second Saturday (June 10th, July 8th, and August 12th); Big Blue Blocks every Monday from 10:00 A.M.–12:00 P.M.



Vacation Bible Schools 

FREE to Low Cost! Read the ACMB VBS Guide for information about VBS programs throughout the city.  


The Rollercade

Tuesdays are Bargain Day: $3 admission and $3 skate rental on Tuesdays from 11:00 A.M.–11:00 P.M.


Toyota Factory Tours

FREE! Tours are offered Monday–Friday year round, and reservations are required

Michelle moved to San Antonio eight years ago and yet still feels like a newcomer. She is rather smitten with the Alamo City. She and her husband met at Texas A&M and started their marriage in Minnesota. After six years of very cold winters, they returned to Texas. Michelle has two kids (12 and 9), along with a very quirky rescue dog and two rather cute guinea pigs. A former corporate food scientist turned part-time yoga instructor, she still takes her food very seriously—she just doesn’t get paid for it anymore. She is fueled by tea, cold brew coffee, yoga, dog walking, books and quickly googling answers to her kids eleventy million questions.


  1. Great kids decorating classes at Sheer Celebrations as well. It’s a great time, hands on without the mess at home. This Saturday the kids learn 4th of July themed cupcakes!

  2. Wanted to make a small correction: The H-E-B Free Family Night at the DoSeum is actually from 6:30-8:30 pm (according to their website)

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