11 Free Things to Do in Salt Lake City

free things to do
Today, I took my kids to the Sweet’s Candy Factory Tour. It’s something I’ve been meaning to do since the beginning of summer, and when my sister-in-law asked if we’d like to tag along, I jumped at the chance.

Best part?
Oh wait. The real best part was the free candy; as well as the visitor’s shop at the end.
{The shop was not free, which was unfortunate for my wallet!}

I started realizing the kids and I have had a lot of fun this summer for no cash. Sometimes it feels like there’s no fun things to take my kids to because I don’t have a lot of extra money. Places like Hogle Zoo, Living Planet Aquarium, or Discovery Gateway are out of my pocketbook range, especially when I have four children! Feel the same way? Good. Because I’m going to make a list of freeish things to do in the Salt Lake City area. 


1. Sweet’s Candy Factory tour – this tour took us about an hour to complete, with a few samples along the way. There were some strict rules (no jewlery, no pictures, no airborne food allergies), but the kids did very well, even though they weren’t big fans of the hair nets!

2. Downtown Farmer’s Market – Okay, so it’s free, but you are going to wind up buying some fruit or veggies, am I right? However, if it’s farm fresh strawberries your kids are begging you to buy, that’s guilt free spending. There is also an arts and crafts market, food vendors, and music. It’s basically a festival every weekend downtown! 

3. Movie Under the Stars at Utah State Capitol – this isn’t one I’ve personally attended, but how fun is this? They project a family friendly movie at the bottom of the hill, and you bring your blankets and camp out. There’s pre-show entertainment and free popcorn. The next one is on July 29, and they’ll be showing Despicable Me. 
Also check out: SLC’s Friday Night Flicks (a different park each week!), or click here to see other free movie nights!
4. Murray City Lunch in the Park Concert Series – this is on my to-do list. Every Tuesday at noon at Murray Park pavilion #5, they host a free lunch concert. Bring a sack lunch and enjoy some local culture with your PB&J! This site also notes they do a free children’s matinee every Friday, same place, at 2:00 p.m. I’m not sure if this is a full length version of the paid nightly shows, or just a selection, but sounds fun either way! 
Other free concerts: Temple Square Concert Series, Twilight Concert Series (preview the featured band to see if it’s family friendly!), Brown Bag Concert Seriesclick here to see even more concerts series! If you wanna get away from it all, check out the concerts at Snowbird!
5. Wasatch Wildflower Festival – my understanding is that this is free. Fun kid-friendly hikes at various ski resorts! End of July. 

6. Conservation Garden Park – a free educational garden where you can learn about being “green,” including interactive exhibits. In September they host a free Utah Green Festival!
Salt Lake City Temple Square
7. Temple Square – The grounds at Temple Square are beautiful. There is so much to see; the North Visitor’s Center with the Christus, a tour of the Conference Center, the movie Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building, daily organ recitals in the Tabernacle, the Church History Museum with the
Book of Mormon Fiesta exhibit (my kids loved this!), and more. You can’t be bored here, but your feet may get tired!

8. Radio Disney Days at the Gallivan Center – prizes, face painting, bounce houses, Disney dancers and more! Looks like we missed the first couple of dates, but the next one is August 9th!

Library Events

9. Library Events – there are virtually dozens of events going on at the County Libraries and the City Libraries! They are fun, educational, and are available for virtually every age: from the youngest babies to teens! Also: did you know you can check out eBooks and eAudiobooks from the library without leaving your house? I love this! I always download an eAudiobook or too before any long car trips! (Hint: I usually use OverDrive. Many audio books are available to copy onto CDs or iPods for easy listening during travel!)

10. UtahFamily.Com – while not technically something to “do,” this magazine is amazing for finding free things around the Valley. They have a website, but I picked up my copy at Fairmont pool. Very comprehensive monthly list of all the activites and family events going on! This is a terrific resource, and a free magazine!
11. Clarkston Pageant: – Martin Harris: The Man Who Knew – this is a worth-the-drive event. It’s a free pageant in Clarkston, Utah. They only show it on the “odd” years, and reservations are required through their website. 

There you have it: a great list of ways to fill up those last draaaaaging days of summer before school starts. And it’s all free!  

What free things do you like to do with your family? Feel free to post things I’ve missed, or free activities in other parts of Utah! 
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7 Responses to 11 Free Things to Do in Salt Lake City

  1. Jamie says:

    What great ideas – I love the list – full of great things for everyone, not just kids.

  2. newbiemama says:

    I know, right? Sooo awesome. In fact on the candy tour, I think the grownups asked more questions than the kids did! (Of course, they were pretty distracted by the huge rolls of taffy…) Thanks for stopping by!

  3. tahnie @ a happy girl says:

    Great list! I recently took my 17 month old to Riverwoods and she played in the fountains. Absolutely loved it! Of course it wasn't exactly free, as momma spent money at Gymboree. ;)

    Happy Tuesday!

  4. Hifam says:

    We love Sweet's Factory. My 12 year old daughter planned her birthday party around it. We took 7 girls on the tour. At the end they let my daughter choose any item from their store for free as a birthday gift. We then came home and dipped chocolates. The girls had a wonderful time and it was basically a free birthday party.

  5. newbiemama says:

    What a creative birthday idea!! I love the activity of dipping chocolates too. Hello, total goodie bag without the high cost! Thanks for sharing!

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  7. Anonymous says:

    We love to go to Gardener Village every Halloween. Free, Fun witches displays to see. Also wheeler farm is a great place for kids to have adventures also free!

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