Memorial Day is a very solemn holiday. Traditionally, it is a day to remember those who died in active military service — those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. While we don’t want to lose sight of the reason behind the holiday, one way to honor the memory of those who served is to strengthen the bonds of our families and communities.
While there are certainly many Memorial Day closings, there remain plenty of ways to find family fun in Champaign-Urbana on the unofficial start to summer. Here’s our list of some of the top options for fun:
It is OPENING WEEKEND! Chances are your kids are more than ready to jump in — regardless of the temperature. Don’t forget the sunscreen. From Champaign to Urbana to Monticello to Tuscola to Paxton to Rantoul, there are plenty of outdoor pools to visit. Get the scoop on all area pools in our pool post.
Renew acquaintances with the animals at Prairie Farm. The Champaign Park District staple opens on Saturday, May 28, for the season, and there’s a good chance your kids would be excited to see the animals again — or for the very first time. Or enjoy the playground. Or bring a picnic. Assuming the weather holds up, it’s a great chance to enjoy the great outdoors with nature’s creatures. Free.
Want to be near water but don’t want to get in? Start a new tradition and go fishing. We tell you how, where and when you can fish in the Champaign-Urbana area.
Observe Memorial Day
Go to a Memorial Day observance or parade. Show your children the true meaning of this day. Observances happen all over Champaign County and elsewhere. It has been a little more challenging to find out where and when these events are happening in 2022, but we will update them on our calendar if they are submitted to us.
When you don’t mind driving a little farther …
–Take in a movie at Harvest Moon Drive-In in Gibson City. One of the neatest, old-time experiences in Central Illinois happens around sundown on Route 47. You can find movie showtimes and details here. We offered our thoughts on the Harvest Moon experience here.
–If the pool isn’t as appealing, perhaps the beach will do. Clinton Lake Beach is a place where the sand is as important as the water — to your little ones, anyway. Memorial Day is opening day for the season. We’ve got more beaches a short drive away, too.
Get ready for summer in Champaign-Urbana:
- Summer Parades in the Champaign-Urbana Area
- Best Midwest Summer Road Trips for Champaign-Urbana Families
- Beaches Within a Short Driving Distance of Champaign-Urbana
- How to Celebrate Juneteenth Around Champaign-Urbana
- 8 Great Summer Festivals in Central Illinois
- Champaign-Urbana Area Fourth of July FIREWORKS!
- 50+ Ways to Have Summer Fun on a Budget In and Around Champaign-Urbana
- Summer Fun in Chicago: Free Days at the Best Museums
- Champaign-Urbana Area Summer Fairs and Festivals
- Splash Pads Around Champaign-Urbana
- Strawberry Picking Near Champaign-Urbana
- How to Celebrate the Fourth of July in Champaign-Urbana
- Champaign-Urbana Area Outdoor Swimming Pools
- Champaign-Urbana Area Summer Reading Programs
- Where to Go Boating with Your Family Near Champaign-Urbana
- Free and Cheap Outdoor Movies in Champaign-Urbana
- Have the Ultimate Outdoor Summer with Kids in the Champaign-Urbana Area
- Summer Fun for Families in Champaign-Urbana
- Farmers Markets in Champaign-Urbana and Beyond
- Outdoor Concerts in Champaign-Urbana and Beyond
- Free Summer Kids Movies Return to Savoy
- Where to See a Baseball Game Near Champaign-Urbana
- Visiting Champaign-Urbana Area Parks and Playgrounds with your Family
- Things to Do for Teens (and Tweens) This Summer in Champaign-Urbana
- Fishing Fun for Families in the Champaign-Urbana Area
- Swim Teams in Champaign-Urbana and Beyond
- Where to Take Swim Lessons in Champaign-Urbana
- Season Pool Passes On Sale in Champaign-Urbana
- Champaign-Urbana Summer Camps for Kids