Let’s be honest: having children is expensive. I am one of the cheapest people I know and I still drop way more money on my kids than I would ever drop on myself. As I write this, I have a hole in the crotch of my yoga pants and I haven’t seen the inside of a hair salon in almost a decade. In fairness, my neighbor cuts my hair, but the point I am trying to make here is that it is hard to find places that are affordable to have fun with the kids. But me and my holey pants are here to save you. Here are a five places to have fun with kids for under ten dollars that will save your sanity and your wallet.
5 Places to Take Your Kids in Lake County for Under Ten Dollars
14245 W. Rockland Rd., Libertyville | (847) 362-4636
The farm has a farmyard, miniature train ride, carousel and mini golf to name a few fun activities. Each individual activity costs five dollars or less, so you have choices. You could also buy a pass for all the activities (five total) for $12.00 for kids, $8.00 for adults. They also have a pet and garden center, a cafe, country store and thrift shop that all helps support Lamb’s Farm’s amazing mission. Head here to read about their history.
Farmyard is $5.00 per person (children age two and younger are free); miniature train ride is $3.00 per person (children age two and younger are free); carousel is $2.00 for children ages 1-12; mini-golf is $4.00 per person ages 2- adult; bounce house is $2.00 per person ages 2-12. The child day pass is $12.00 and the adult day pass is $8.00.
You can read Little Lake County’s article about the tot lot at Lamb’s Farm here.
Bella’s Bouncies Indoors
1600 N. Milwaukee Ave., Lake Villa | (847) 546-7000
This place has saved us many a time over the past nine years. Kids can jump, bounce, run and get all of that energy out for $9 per child. Parents can sit with fellow parents and watch them play with their phones. Just kidding. But bring a book just in case.
Open gym is $9 per child and includes free popcorn. Open gym times vary, but Bella’s Bouncies Indoors is open every day of the week. Head to the website to see all of the hours and prices.
Lake County Dog Parks
- Duck Farm Dog Park
Hwy 132 and Douglas Ln., Lake Villa
- Independence Grove Dog Park
31531 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville
- Lakewood Dog Park
27473 N. Fairfield Rd., Wauconda
If you have a dog lover at home and you have a dog that needs some energy expended, have I got a hidden gem for you. What I like to call the “Bella’s Bouncies Outdoors for doggies,” Lake County dog parks offer fun for your pet and fun for your kids as well. My nine-year-old daughter asks to go to the dog park with our Buddy like some kids ask to go to McDonald’s. P.S. – it wears out the kids as well.
A day pass for the dog park is $10 per family or a yearly pass is $50 per dog (a much better deal), $20 per additional dog.
Yu Kids Island
122 Hawthorn Center Suite 401 Vernon Hills | (847) 680-3800
After dragging your kids along to the mall for shopping, why not reward them for good behavior by making a stop at Yu Kids in Hawthorn Mall? Unlimited play can be had for only $10 per child Monday-Thursday; prices are a little higher on the weekends, $12 per child. They also have fun event and crafts every season, so check out the website to see if they have anything planned for your visit. Read our review of Yu Kids Island here, and check the website for weekly specials.
Liberty 1 & 2 Theater
708 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville | (847) 918-7464
378 Lake St., Antioch | (847) 395-0245
With kid’s movie tickets as low as $6 and adults as low as $8, why would you go anywhere else? These theaters have something else that the big ones do not: character. The Liberty theater once employed a famous actor named Marlon Brando, so there is history as well.
The Antioch theater is a charming part of downtown Antioch and is just around the corner from Dairy Queen, so you have to go now. Their prices are the same as Liberty; $8 per adult, $6 per senior citizen, $6 per child.
Where do you take the kids for less than 10 dollars?