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Family Fun Ideas in Fredericton!

Family Fun Ideas in Fredericton!

As a mom of 2 small kids, and working at Fredericton Tourism, it goes without saying that we love to do lots of family fun in Fredericton throughout the summer. And we usually get questions from friends looking for recommendations on things to with kids in Fredericton.

This year we made up a ‘wish list’ of what we’re hoping to do in the capital region (in no particular order) and sharing it below – complete with some fun tips & tricks to help with your planning.

Take a peek and let us know in the comments what family fun you have planned for this summer.

1. A visit to the Mactaquac Beaver Ponds
My kids start asking to do this one as soon as the snow melts, definitely a family favorite! This (free) activity is all about exploring the beaver ponds – plus there are some great trails as well! Bring some nets, bucket (and rubber boots) with you for maximum fun as you try to catch tadpoles and other cool creatures!

Tips: Mactaquac Provincial Park offers free guided tours of the Beaver Ponds during the week by appointment (available June, July and August). Tours begin at the Mactaquac Park Administration building and all of the trails are wheelchair accessible.

Mactaquac Beaverpond

2. Howland Falls
Why not make a day of your Mactaquac experience and drive a bit further to check out Howland Falls. These falls are down a bit of a hill so not for the too young (although my 4 ½ year old joined us for it last year). But it’s just one of the many Fredericton waterfalls to explore this summer!

Howland Falls

3. Science East!
I think back to my high school physics teacher who always (enthusiastically) told us 'physics is everywhere!'. Although I had a hard time wanting to relate in a classroom setting, Science East does a great job of making science - fun! Explore their 150+ hands on exhibits and trust me, they aren't just for the kids!

Tips: We purchased an annual Science East family membership ($80) – not only does this give us free admission all year but it also gives us free admission to any science centre in North America! 

Science East

4. Biking the trails
Fredericton’s flat (and many paved) trails are lots of fun for biking – and you can’t beat the fun views off the Bill Thorpe Walking Bridge! Need a bike rental? Stop by Second Nature Outdoors, Savages Bike Rentals or the Radical Edge.

Biking the trails

5. Calithumpians Outdoor Summer Theatre
Music, skits, silliness and lots of fun – my kids LOVE the Calithumpians! This (free) outdoor theatre runs daily July 2 - September 4 at 12:15pm on weekdays and 2pm on weekends in Officers’ Square.

Tip: Bring a blanket and food and make a picnic of it! But best to come early for prime spots!

Outdoor Summer Theatre

6. Kingswood Entertainment Centre
From bouncy castles, laser tag, bowling, games, climbing structures the kids will have an amazing time here (and parents can have a little rest). Plus this is also a great idea for a rainy day activity too!

Kingswood Entertainment Centre

7. The Donut Bar

Treat the whole family to a round of freshly baked donuts from Fredericton’s first and only donut bar! They offer a great variety of both classic and fun flavours, so there’s sure to be something to suit everyone’s tastes. But be quick: they only bake one batch a day and when it’s gone, it’s gone! 

8. Hyla Park Frog Walks
Did you know Fredericton’s home to Canada’s first amphibian park? Enjoy a free guided frog walk on Thursday nights at 7pm from July 13 to August 31, where you’ll get to learn lots of cool facts about frogs – and hopefully see some too!

Hyla Park Frog Walks

9. Changing of the Guard Ceremony
I don’t know if it’s the sounds of the pipes and drums or the bright colours but my kids love to watch the Guard. You can catch the Changing of the Guard Ceremonies in Officers’ Square from July 2 to August 31, starting at 11am and 4pm (plus there’s an extra ceremony on Tuesday & Thursdays at 7pm)

Tip: On many days our staffers are looking for people to Inspect the Guard. If you’re interested check with our Fredericton Tourism staff (dressed in a blue shirt) before the Ceremony starts to see if there’s an opportunity. The Guard usually stick around after the Ceremony for photos with the public (so always have your camera on hand!)

Changing of the Guard Ceremony

10. Kings Landing
Do your kids love to dress up? What about visiting animals? You get all that and more at Kings Landing! If you haven’t visited Kings Landing in awhile you’re in for a treat as they’ve made some big changes in the experience. For example, you can now wear the clothing (yes, parents can too!). Plus at some homes you can help out the homeowners in their daily chores from the gardening, cooking, rug hooking and so much more! These hands-on experiences make for lots of fun for everyone!

Tip: Why not make a day of it and have lunch at the Kings Head Inn. In addition to their historic fare they also have a pub menu (and a great kids menu!)

Kings Landing Historical Settlement

11. Family Art Workshops at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery
Why not let your young artists view, imagine and create art this summer!

Cost is FREE for members, and $10 per week for non-members. Materials are included. Please feel free to contact the Gallery to confirm that it is happening on a given week.

Sunday funday!

A post shared by Hannah Williams (@creativsoul26) on

12. Berry Picking!
Who doesn’t love picking berries? From strawberries, raspberries and blueberries there’s lots to pick. The biggest challenge for us… getting the berries home before they have everything gobbled up!

Tip: Take a peek at our complete list of u-picks in the Fredericton area!

Berry Picking

13. Beaches!
From Killarney Lake to Mactaquac Beach there’s lots of fun for the kids. 

Beaches

14. Go Fly a Kite!
Throw the kite (and butterfly nets) in the car and head over to a wide open space. One of our favourite spots is Carleton Park– sit back and enjoy the views as the kids burn off some steam.

15. Fredericton Public Library
My kids love the library, and with the development of the new childrens’ space last year it’s that much more fun! From sitting in the corner and reading books to enjoying one of their many events there’s lots to choose from!

Tip: This also makes a great rainy day activity

Fredericton Public Library

16. Wading Pools
Lots of fun any day but these really (really) hit the spot on those hot humid days (you know, the ones we swore we’d never complain about again when we were in the dead of winter?). Royal Road is my kids’ favourite but there are lots of Fredericton wading pools to choose from including the popular splash pad at Wilmot Park (2018 hours of operation)

Wading Pools

17. TreeGo
TreeGo, an outdoor aerial adventure located in Mactaquac Park, has 2 courses – one for adults and the other for kids (aged 7 – 13). I’ve done the adult course a number of times but can’t wait to bring my oldest (a monkey bars fanatic) to try out the kids course!

TreeGo

18. Clay Cafe
Whether you’re looking for rainy day ideas or the kids want to unleash their creativity, the Clay Cafe is the perfect outlet.

Clay Cafe

19. Free Outdoor Concerts
From pipe bands, rock, blues, celtic and everything in between – enjoy the free concert series downtown in Officers’ Square (Tues & Thur at 7:30pm) and at the Nashwaak Commons (7:30pm Wed) from June – August. Get the full 2018 schedule here.

Outdoor Summer Concerts

20. Festivals
There’s lots of fun Fredericton festivals for the family to experience each summer. Watch our Fredericton Tourism calendar for a complete list!

Highland Games Festival

21. Moxon’s Country Pumpkin
Head out for a drive out to Maugerville to visit the animals at Moxon’s Country Pumpkin. While you’re there be sure to stop by their market for fresh veggies & baked items.

Tip: Why not stop by Harvey’s Big Potato for some ice cream and a picnic in their play area (which includes lots of fun cut outs and swings).

Moxon's Country Pumpkin

22. Unplugged Board games Café
Who doesn’t love board games? Located in downtown Fredericton this makes the perfect stop with the family (and did I mention they have a menu – including the ultimate child friendly grilled cheese sandwiches!). Spend an hour or all afternoon, you’ve got more than 500 games to choose from!

Unplugged

23. Second Nature Outdoors

Rent some kayaks, stand up paddle boards, or a canoe and explore the Saint-John River like never before!  No experience? No problem! Second Nature Outdoors offers tours and courses for all ages and skill levels.

 

Cruising the St. John River... Highly recommended #ExploreNB : @acorn_art_photography

A post shared by A for Adventure (@a.foradventure) on

24. Geocaching

Take the road less travelled and visit cool places along the way! The Fredericton Geocaching Tour is divided into three categories: nature, culture, and heritage. Pick a category (or do all three), grab your GPS, and bring the whole family on a scenic outdoor adventure!

25. Garrison Night Market

Check out the brand new Garrison Night Market, Thursdays from 4:30pm – 9pm all summer long! There are dozens of vendors selling everything from handmade crafts to tasty snacks. Not to mention free entertainment throughout the night!   

Tip: Make an evening out of it! Enjoy a family meal at any one of Fredericton’s excellent local restaurants before visiting the market, then stick around for the FREE concert in Officer’s Square at 7:30pm!

 

A post shared by Casey Gaunce (@beechwoodwildness) on

Well, looks like a busy summer, and we can’t forget about all the free things to do in Fredericton. What are you planning to do with for some family fun in Fredericton this summer? Be sure to tell us below.