Boulder's Best Spots

School’s Out! What to Do with Kids in Boulder this Summer

June 4, 2017
What to do with kids in boulder this summer

School is over, the kids are home and you’re left wondering – what should we do this summer? Boulder has a TON of fun opportunities for kids and families. Whether your kid loves biking, reading, skiing, go kart racing or music, there is something for everyone in our guide to summer for kids in Boulder.

Gateway Park Fun Center

What to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy Gateway Park Fun Center

Where: 4800 North 28th St, Boulder, CO 80301

Hours: Every day from 10AM – 10PM

Cost: Prices vary based on activity – view full pricing here.

Gateway Park Fun Center is a kid’s dream come true (and so fun for adults too!). Opened in the 1980s, this park has maintained tons of original features, giving it an eclectic, old school feel that will bring you back to your childhood. Many activities include 18-hole mini golf courses — choose from the Windmill Course or the Castle Course, or play both!!

The park also offers bumper cars, as well as single-seat and double-seat go carts. Gateway is home to Boulder’s only batting cages, with a variety of pitch speeds for softball and baseball. The arcade is filled with different kinds of video and interactive games. Many of the games spit out tickets which can be traded in for fun prizes at the end of your visit. A snack bar is located inside. If that isn’t enough, Gateway also has a full golf driving range as well as a human maze.

Beach Time at the Boulder Reservoir

Things to do in Boulder in June

Photo Courtesy City of Boulder

Where: Boulder Reservoir, 5565 N 51st St., Boulder, CO 80301

Hours: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily unless otherwise posted

Cost: Kids ages 3-18 $4, Adults 19-59 $7, Seniors 60+ $5, 2 and under are FREE

Boulder Reservoir offers one of the largest, seasonally lifeguard attended swimming beaches in Colorado. It features a marked swim area with rafts. The shallow roped off area is great for small children. Children 12 and under must pass a lifeguard administered swim test to go beyond the first rope. Children under 3 years old must wear swim diapers.Children 5 years old and under must be within arm’s reach of an adult when in the water or near the water’s edge. Flotation devices are allowed only at the discretion of the lifeguards/beach staff. To view all the safety rules, click here.

Don’t have time to pack a lunch? Visit the Beachside Cafe, featuring an extensive lunch menu as well as snacks, kids meals and coffee and tea.

Spruce Outdoor Pool

what to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy City of Boulder

Where: 2102 Spruce St., Boulder, Colorado 80302

Hours: Open Swim Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11:15AM-8PM, Tuesday & Thursday 10AM-8PM, Saturday & Sunday 10AM-6PM

Cost: Kids ages 3-18 $4, Adults 19-59 $7, Seniors 60+ $5, 2 and under are FREE. Summer passes available, click here for details.

Spruce Pool is Boulder’s premier family oriented outdoor pool. Enjoy a picnic on the lawn, cool off in the water features and leisure pool, then swim a few laps in our 25 yard lap pool. Eight lane, 25-yard pool with temperatures between 80° and 82°, leisure pool with accessible ramp, accessible play features including jets, fountains and a duck slide.

Scott Carpenter Outdoor Pool

what to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy City of Boulder

Where: 1505 30th St, Boulder, Colorado 80303

Hours: Open Swim Monday-Friday 1-4PM, Saturday & Sunday 12-5PM

Cost: Kids ages 3-18 $4, Adults 19-59 $7, Seniors 60+ $5, 2 and under are FREE. Summer passes available, click here for details.


Boulder’s only 50 meter pool — great for both elite athletes and recreational swimmers. Take a ride down the slide or jump from the springboard. Six lane 50 meter pool with temperatures between 80° and 82°, two one-meter spring boards operated during open swim hours, large slide operated during open swim hours.

ABC Kids Climbing

What to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy ABC Kids Climbing Facebook Page

Where: 1960 32nd Street, Boulder, Colorado 80301

Hours: All Ages Tuesday 7PM – 9PM, Friday 7PM – 10PM, Sunday 12PM  – 6PM. Young Kids only (6 & Under) Saturdays 2PM – 5PM

Cost: Individuals $12, Family (4 or more) $40

Open Gym is a great opportunity for families to try ABC Kids Climbing for their first time.  Kids are welcome to explore our facility, with parent supervision, to find the area in which they will have the most fun.  ABC has top ropes, auto-belays, ziplines, slides, and bouldering for kids of all ages to enjoy! No climbing experience?  No need to worry!  ABC’s expert staff will give all new families a tour complete with rules and basic climbing guidelines to get you started in the right direction. ABC also offers summer day camps for kids – details here.

CU Museum of Natural History

what to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy CU Museum of Natural History

Where: Henderson Building, 15th and Broadway, Boulder, CO 80309

Hours: Monday – Friday 9-5, Saturday 9-4 and Sunday 10-4

Cost: FREE

The University of Colorado’s Museum of Natural History is fun, educational, interactive AND parent-friendly! The museum offers kid-inspired exhibits (right now — butterflies and dinosaurs!) and a cute gift shop on the main level. In the lower level, kids will have a great time in the interactive play and learning area. Right outside the play area parents can enjoy a nice, FREE cup of coffee or tea in the museum’s BioLounge with comfortable seats and inviting atmosphere. Family-friendly bathrooms are located upstairs. While there are beautiful staircases in this beautiful, old building, there is also a centrally-located elevator making the museum handicapped and stroller-friendly. Admission is free, donations are accepted. The gift shop offers a fun array of science-inspired items. Paid parking is located South of the museum.

Hike & Learn at NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research)

what to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy of UCAR

Where: NCAR, 1850 Table Mesa Dr, Boulder, CO 80305

Hours: Visitors Center is Open Monday – Friday 8-5, Weekends 9-4

Cost: FREE

NCAR’s beautiful outdoor spaces and Visitor Center are perfect for a summer outing with the kids! Take a hike at the base of Boulder’s amazing flatirons with gorgeous views. At the Visitor’s Center, kids can learn about weather and climate with interactive displays. Kids can play with clouds and even create their own tornado! Other exhibits include Sun-Earth Connections, Layers of the Atmosphere, Climate Discovery and more. Guided tours are available from 12-1 on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays, or you can opt to move through the exhibits on your own. NCAR offers a cafeteria that is open weekdays (except holidays) for breakfast, 8:00 am – 9:30 am and lunch, 11:30 – 1:30 pm (Cafeteria accepts only cash). Admission is always FREE to the public! Parking is also free.

Summer Reading Program at Boulder Public Library

NoBo Branch Boulder Public Library

Photo Courtesy Boulder Public Library Facebook Page

Where: Main Library, George Reynolds Branch, Carnegie Branch, Meadows Branch, NoBo Corner Library

Hours: Hours vary, click here for detailed info on each library.

Cost: FREE

Boulder offers five public libraries in different areas around town, all of which are offering the summer reading program.You can sign up in person or  sign up online and pick up your reading log or teen card deck the next time you’re at your local library.

The main library is awesome for families with its children’s area as well as the Seeds Library Cafe, a full-service coffee shop right inside the library! The Children’s area is glass-enclosed, allowing kids to make some noise without disturbing other patrons and offers a vast collection of books as well as  hands-on activities, a story time meeting area, and kid-sized computer desks and seating. The area has its own private bathrooms for kids & caregivers. Parents will enjoy the Seeds Library Cafe, located on the bridge overlooking Boulder Creek between the main library and the arts & media area. The cafe is operated by the Boulder County Farmers’ Markets and offers not only coffee and espresso drinks but breakfast and lunch as well. The cafe is open Monday-Thursday from 9-5, Friday & Saturday 10-5 and Sunday 12-5.

Valmont Bike Park

things to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy Valmont Bike Park

Where: 3160 Airport Rd, Boulder, CO 80301

Hours: Dawn to dusk daily

Cost: FREE

North America’s most state-of-the-art public bike park, Valmont Bike Park is located in Boulder, Colorado on 40 acres of awesome. Bike Park amenities include family trails, cross country trails, cyclocross courses, a slopestyle terrain park, dirt jumps, a dual slalom race course, 2 pump parks, and kids bike play areas. Progression is the name of the game at this park, with “small” through “extra-large” trails and features that cater to everyone, from the beginning mountain biker to professional rider. Check out the bike park’s trail map here.

Fiske Planetarium

what to do with kids in boulder this summer

Photo Courtesy of Fiske Planetarium Facebook Page

Where: 2414 Regent Dr, Boulder, CO 80309

Hours: Shows vary daily, see full schedule here.

Cost: Tickets are generally $7 for kids, seniors & veterens/ $10 for adults

Fiske Planetarium is located on the campus of the University of Colorado. The Planetarium hosts a diverse range of shows, star talks, LASER shows, and special live events in it’s 65-foot diameter dome (the largest between Chicago and Los Angeles!). In 2013, Fiske completed a major systems upgrade with an 8K Sky-Skan projection system that allows us to show the most cutting-edge content in a truly immersive environment that fully surrounds audiences with a huge screen, dazzling visuals, and fantastic sound.  The new star machine, which looks like R2-D2, shows 10 million stars and the Milky Way, the most beautiful indoor sky ever.

The planetarium hosts special talks and educational events, and often host large crowds during astronomical and NASA-related events. Fiske is open weekdays for select shows and events, and hosts weekend shows and matinées. For the Planetarium’s show schedule, click here.

Meadow Music with Jeff and Paige

Things to do in Boulder in June

Photo Courtesy Jeff and Paige

Where: Chautauqua Green, Baseline Rd & 9th Street, Boulder, CO 80302

Time: Mondays throughout the summer, 5:30 – 7PM

Cost: FREE

A kid favorite. Join the musical duo Jeff and Paige for evenings of children’s music and nature education. The evening consists of a short hike, followed by 45 minutes of nature music at the foot of the Flatirons. Sponsored by City of Boulder’s Open Space and Mountain Parks Division Meadow Music is an award-winning environmental education program at Chautauqua Green in Boulder, Colorado.! Meet us at 5:30 to start a short hike that’s friendly to all ages (we recommend arriving early to find a place to put your picnic blanket before the hike). After our hike we return to Chautauqua Green for a concert full of our original nature and science-based music. The concert starts around 6:00pm and ends by about 7:00. Bring a blanket to sit on, a picnic and some silliness.

Shredder Urban Ski & Snowboard Park

what to do with kids this summer in boulder

Photo Courtesy Shredder Ski Facebook Page

Where: 6655 Arapahoe Rd, Boulder, CO 80303

Hours: Saturdays 8-9AM

Cost: $15 for non-members

Disappointed that ski season is over? Shredder Urban Ski & Snowboard Park has got you covered! Shredder is an amazing indoor ski and snowboarding facility for ages 10 months to adult. Open Gym is a time to practice and reinforce the fundamentals of skiing and snowboarding. Parents or adults will interact and/or ski/board with their child. Skis and boots are available to rent. For safety purposes, please call ahead of time to reserve your time slot to use the Slope.  By reserving your time slot, your kids will be safe and able to focus on the fundamentals. Shredder also offers ski and snowboard school classes to all ages, including freestyle fundamental classes (starting at age 8), Yeti School (10 months to 3 years), and beginning adult skiers/boarders. Join us for Open Gym times, Birthday Parties, Summer Camps, Parents’ Nights Out, and so much more!

Boulder Farmer’s Market

What to Do with Kids in Boulder this weekend

Photo Courtesy Boulder County Farmer’s Market

About Rachel Daly

I am Rachel, Boulder writer, mother and animal lover. It is my passion to explore Boulder and to share what I've learned with you! My husband, Jeremiah Daly, is a local Realtor and neighborhood expert. We live in the Boulder foothills with our two young daughters.

View All Posts

You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply