Low Cost Summer Fun Ideas

fun summer ideas from Madison credit union
Low cost, local summer fun by Dane County Credit Union.

Memorial Day and July 4th have come and gone. For most, that means summer is either beginning to wind down, or beginning to spill over with that seemingly never-ending stream of vacations you planned months ago.

Yet whether you’re craving a break from layovers and long car rides–or you’re looking for a little weekend getaway to spice up your summer, it sounds like a Dane County day trip will cure what’s ailing you. That’s right: Right here in Dane County we’ve got plenty of fun summer trips for you and yours that won’t break your wallet. Not only does this Madison credit union love saving you money on banking services but we LOVE to share ways to save on summer fun, too!

Downtown Madison:

There are few better places to be on a Saturday than downtown Madison. And if you’re a morning person, there is no better place to be than at the Dane County Farmer’s Market on Capitol Square, an event that’s best topped off with a short journey to the Capitol’s observation deck.

Just off the square, there are numerous museum options for those life long learners. Both the Wisconsin Historical Museum and the Madison Children’s Museum are low-cost admission, while the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Geology Museum and Chazen Museum of Art are fantastic, free-to-enter buildings.

For those who would rather spend their day outdoors, the Henry Vilas Zoo–one of only 10 free zoos in North America–will surely do the trick, as would a trip to the also free, neighboring UW-Madison Arboretum.

The Edge–and Outside–of Town:

Madison is often cited as one of the most bike-friendly cities in the United States, and while spending an afternoon pedaling on Dane County’s numerous bike trails, that becomes abundantly clear. You can even take the Badger State Trail as far out as New Glarus or even Monroe, if you’re feeling adventurous.

And of course, no day-cation list would be complete without a mention of Devil’s Lake State Park. It’s just a short drive from Madison and great place to hike, picnic or swim.

With it’s numerous outdoor, indoor, free and low-cost activities, Dane County offers summer lovers a chance to enjoy the season without the hassle of big crowds, expensive flights and worrying about what’s left in your wallet. Toss in our fantastic live music and food scenes–as well as our beloved collegiate summer baseball team, the Madison Mallards (a favorite spot for Dane County Credit Union staff)–and it becomes clear that it may take a few trips to truly experience it all.


Published by

Tom S.

Tom is a 2006 graduate of UW Madison, currently residing in Verona with his wife and 2 girls. He has been passionate about writing ever since he was 15 years old, and displays that same enthusiasm in his work today. When he’s not sharing insightful financial wisdom, you can find Tom chilling on the Union Terrace, enjoying craft beer at the Great Dane, or hiking at Governor Nelson State Park. In the Fall he loves to take his family to Badger Football games!