Things to Do with Kids

Video: How to Bend a Fun Day with the Kids

Activities and things to do with the kids are endless in Bend, Oregon. From bike rentals to ice cream, Chelsea finds herself with a surrey full of kids and plenty of smiles. Family-friendly fun happens in the Old Mill District. Share how your family likes to have fun with us @OldMillDistrict #HowtoBend


Star Gazing

Enjoy Star Gazing where you’ll learn about the night sky through a constellation tour. Meet the staff from the Observatory in Center Plaza by the footbridge (new location)! Look for the telescopes setting up on Thursday nights in September-October, from 8-9pm.

The Oregon Observatory hosts guided constellations tours. The Observatory’s retractable roof is a perfect location for year round star gazing. 


Bend Open Streets

Get ready to explore the streets in a safe, healthy, more livable way on Sunday, September 18 from 12-4pm. Open streets for walking, bicycling, skating, dancing, playing and socializing. Free and dog friendly. Find out more about the overall event Bend Open Streets, scavenger hunt, activity hubs and more.

Discover Nature Festival

Bring the whole family for a free fun day of outdoor activities on Saturday, September 24 from 11-3pm at Riverbend Park. Nature Arts and Crafts, Wilderness Survival Skills, Stream Exploration, Story Time, Live Birds and reptiles, Games, Food Carts and more. GearFix Outdoor Recreation Zone with canoeing, fly casting practice, archery and bike rodeo. Learn more about Children's Forest and the Discover Nature Festival.



Wheel Fun Rentals: Bike Rentals in Bend

Rent a Surrey that seats 3-9 people and ride through the Old Mill District and along the river trail. Wheel Fun Rentals has surreys, coupes, cruisers and multi speed bikes, tandem bikes, baby jogger, Norge boards and more.

Visit Wheel Fun Rentals for more information and check out all the bike options. Located at the pump house across the pond from Flatbread Neapolitan Pizzeria and Café Yumm! at the north end of the Old Mill District. (Open daily through September 18. Weekends only for the rest of September-October. Weather permitting.)


The Oregon Observatory and Sunriver Nature Center: Wednesdays in July and August

Solar Viewing and a Great Horned Owl
See the sun through a filtered telescope! The Oregon Observatory will offer Solar Viewing in the Old Mill District. At the same time, see a great horned owl up close and learn more about these beautiful creatures from a Naturalist from the Sunriver Nature Center.

Solar Viewing and Great Horned Owl available from 11:30 noon- 1:30pm, in the plaza next to Strictly Organic Coffee Co. Happening on Wednesdays in July-August.

The Sunriver Nature Center offers —hands-on exhibits about mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds—plus interpretive exhibits, a botanical garden and nature trail. The kids will love it!


Fall Drop-in Activities at The Pavilion

There are a wide variety of activities to enjoy including: basketball, pickel ball, badminton, futsal, scootering, skateboarding, rock climbing, ping pong, foosball, cornhole, ladder toss and bocce ball. Look for details, fees and schedule at The Pavilion.

Open Play is free and offered during set times for court sports and open spaces for play and recreate.

Bend Science Station

The Bend Science Station offers a wide range of exciting science camps! Bend Science Station has something for the scientist in all of you! 


Self Guided Heritage Tours

The Bend Heritage Walk Mobile Tour covers seven historical sites in downtown Bend. Take the family on a self-guided tour of downtown Bend through the Des Chutes Historical Museum. Find our more and download the free App.

Deschutes Public Library

The Deschutes Public Library offers children’s story times (Baby Steps, Toddlin’ Tales and Preschool Parade) at the Downtown Bend and East Bend Libraries throughout the year. Visit Deschutes Public Library for a full list of story times.


High Desert Museum

Art for a Nation: Inspiration from the Great Depression The Works Progress Administration (WPA) employed millions of unemployed Americans, including artists, musicians and writers, during the Great Depression. The Hoover Dam, Timberline Lodge and LaGuardia Airport are all iconic WPA projects and over 100,000 works of art were also created. On view through October 2.

Wildlife programs—porcupines, otters, reptiles, a bobcat—meet them all up close. Raptors of the Desert Sky—hawks, owls and other raptors—soar overhead.  Living History Step back into 1904 and join the Miller Family tending the garden and working the saw mill. Visit the High Desert Museum for more information.


The Pavilion

The ice season will begin in early November and conclude in early April. Single visit fees and discounted 10-visit pass are available. Skate rentals are $3. The outdoor plaza includes fire pits, snow play area, spectator viewing and a small shelter.

Warm up, watch the action on the ice or relax by the fireplace in the elevated viewing room. Free Wi-Fi. The 30,000 square foot Pavilion roof is protected on the south and west sides by translucent panels designed to reduce wind and sun exposure on the ice while maintaining an open air feel.

The Bend Park & Recreation District’s website is packed with information on Open Skate, Skating Lessons, Group Parties, Youth Hockey, Adult Curling and Hockey Leagues, Rentals, Fees, Family Skate, Parent-Tot Skate and FAQs. See the full schedule and more at www.thepavilioninbend.

Regular Hours early November- early April: Monday – Sunday 8:30am – 8pm. (Holidays and special hours available online). Located at the Simpson & Colorado roundabout at 1001 Bradbury Way.


Past Events:


Birding & Binoculars


The Sunriver Nature Center offers Bird Walks on Sundays (through August 28) from 7:30-8:30am. During the summer months families will have the chance to see such species as red-winged black birds, Belted Kingfisher, Cedar Waxwings, or even Bald Eagles along the river.

Talks are suitable for kids and adults. All Bird Walks start at the plaza by Strictly Organic Coffee Co.

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BMC Free Summer Sunday Concerts

Bend Memorial Clinic Free Summer Sunday Concerts run in June -July on select Sundays. Come on down to the Les Schwab Amphitheater and enjoy a beautiful afternoon of great music and healthy family fun.

All Free Summer Sunday Concerts concerts run from 2:30-4:30pm.





Regal Summer Movie Express

The Regal Summer Movie Express is a great way to enjoy a morning movie with other families at a great price. This summer enjoy $1 movies on Tuesday and Wednesdays at 10am (June -August). Pick a hot day, pack up the kids and watch a kid's movie in an air conditioned theater at Regal Cinemas with a large tub of popcorn. Movies run Tuesdays and Wednesdays.




Tumalo Creek Kayak & Canoe 

Pickin & Paddlin Behind the shop—live music and boat demos—on the banks of the Deschutes River. Boat demos 4-7pm. The opening band begins at 5pm and the headliner is done by 9pm.

Tumalo Creek sells tickets on the website. All funds go directly to the Bend Paddle Trail Alliance.


Kids Splash & Dash

The Kids Splash & Dash is an event that’s all-out fun for the kids with an athletic obstacle course, water slide and pools for children ages 3-10 years old. The race begins with a climb up inflatable stairs, down a big slide and into a pool of water! The Kid’s Splash & Dash in July  is one of several Kids Rock the Races. 


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Balloons Over Bend Night Glow and Children’s Festival

Balloons glow brightly against the night sky in July at dusk for Night Glow.

The Children’s Festival has over 60 kid’s activities including crafts, face painting, bouncy houses and numerous game booths.  The festival is free and activities range in price with a portion of proceeds benefiting Saving Grace.  Event runs 10am-4pm in July. The Balloons Blast Kids Race is Saturday morning.




Live Music & Concerts

Catch a live concert with the kids in Bend! And did you know that children two and under get in free at all the Bend summer concerts at the Les Schwab Amphitheater? The kids can also groove to tunes at the BMC Summer Sunday Concerts (in June-July) each summer.




Cascade School of Music

Cascade School of Music offers a range of music lessons including Sing & Play, Little Singers, Drums 101, Bandamonium, Chamber Music for Strings, Guitar classes, music camp and more for early child and youth. Adult classes include Intro to Blues, Bluegrass and Ukulele.


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Deschutes County Fair & Rodeo

The Deschutes County Fair in Redmond (in early August) offers up family-friendly entertainment including 4-H farm animals, the rodeo, the Family-Fun Zone and carnival rides.  Stroll through the barns and see the goats, pigs, bunnies and many more animals raised by local kids.


NorthWest Crossing Munch & Movies

Munch & Movies runs Friday nights (August 19-September 9) at Compass Park. Live music by local musicians starts at 6pm and movies will begin at dusk. Enjoy dinner and dessert from nearby restaurants onsite. Free films on the big screen range from classic horror, unsurpassed comedy, moving drama and exciting action. Bring a low back chair and a blanket.


Kids Rock the Race

Kids Rock the Races gives kids the opportunity to get outside, have fun and experience the excitement of a race! The races are: Kids Splash & Dash in July and Balloons Blast Kids Race in July.