Spring break in Gardens: Three free or nearly-free activities for kids and teens

This picture of the carousel at Downtown at the Gardens by Jody Lane was a finalist in the digital manipulation category of Palm Beach Gardens’ first photo contest.

School’s out. Now what?

If the kids (or Mom and Dad) are starting to go stir-crazy, here are some inexpensive things to do around Palm Beach Gardens.

  1. Take a free carousel ride at Downtown at the Gardens: The carousel that’s the hallmark of the outdoor shopping complex at 11701 Lake Victoria Gardens is FREE from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Wednesday, thanks to Palm Beach Children’s Hospital. The 27 handmade wooden animals on the carousel include horses, seahorses and flamingos specially designed for Downtown at the Gardens.
    Afterward, if you’re willing to splurge a little, stop by Sloan’s Ice Cream for an ice cream or Whole Foods for a smoothie.RELATED: Find the best summer camp for your kids and score freebies in Gardens

     

  2. Go on an outdoor selfie scavenger hunt: This one’s great for the teenage crowd. Admission to MacArthur Beach State Park, 10900 Jack Nicklaus Drive on the north end of Singer Island, costs $5 per carload. A selfie scavenger hunt with quirky, clever clues is posted at the bottom of the Plan Your Visit page of the park’s website. Scavengers are encouraged to take lots of photos and share them to @macarthurbeach’s Instagram with the hashtag #macarthur beach. Don’t forget the sunscreen.

    Allyson Ehrlich and her mother Diane Ehrlich walk to the beach at John D. MacArthur Beach State Park. (Bruce R. Bennett/The Palm Beach Post file photo)

  3. Make a Harry Potter wand or learn to play chess: The library is a great place to kill time and make new friends, especially if it’s raining. Harry Potter trivia and wand-making is 3 p.m. Wednesday for young wizards and witches ages 10 to 17.For the younger set, a chess class for beginners will teach kids ages 8 to 12 the basics of the game 2:30 p.m. Friday before a Kids Chess Club at 3 p.m. Parents should register kids in advance for both the Harry Potter and chess events at the Gardens Branch of the Palm Beach County Library. They can do so by calling 561-626-6133.

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