Having fun in Madison doesn’t have to cost a fortune and, if you have kids, you know that it can get expensive entertaining them. We’ve found five fun things to do during February that won’t cost you even one cent. Check them out!

Arctic Passage

This one is especially good for parents looking for fun things to do with their kids. It’s the newest habitat at the zoo and it features grizzly and polar bears and harbor seals. You can watch the polar bears underwater and maybe get lucky enough to see a grizzly fish for lunch in the stream. Head to the east side of Henry Vilas Park Zoological Society and you’ll find Arctic Passage across from the George Fait North American Prairie display. The park is located at 702 S. Randall Ave. in the Near West Side. Get details here.

UW Chamber Orchestra

James Smith conducts the UW Chamber Orchestra for a free show tomorrow, February 16 at 7:30 p.m. The evening’s program includes Grieg Holberg Suite, Shostakovich (arr. Barshai) Chamber Symphony op., 118a and Bartok Romanian Folk Dances. It’s happening at Mills Concert Hall, 455 N. Park St. in Madison.

Madison Musical Idol

This Thursday, February 18, Four Seasons Theatre and Music Theatre of Madison present Madison Musical Idol and, if you’re in the audience, you will help choose the city’s next musical theatre idol. Get to Fredric March Play Circle by 8 p.m. Learn more here.

The Night Sky

Another free event that the kids will love is happening on February 28, from 5:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. at UW-Madison Arboretum. Watch the sunset, view the night sky through telescopes and have fun with the various activities planned. Learn more about this event here. The arboretum is located at 1207 Seminole Hwy. in Madison.


There are 12 parks spread throughout Madison that offer free ice skating to the public. As of yesterday, Tenney Park ice rink (402 N. Thornton Ave.) is now open weekends from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. It, Elver and Vilas Park rinks offer skate rentals, warming houses and concessions. Check the hours and rink status at the parks on the City of Madison website .




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