Ready or not, November signals the start of the holiday season.

We have scoured the calendar for the very best craft shows, seasonal activities, and holiday events – not to mention a Santa Sighting or two already this month. Not ready to see Christmas tree decorations quite yet?  No worries, we have a lineup of story times, free movies, and other outings for the entire family to enjoy.

There are so many free or inexpensive events to be THANKFUL for this November.

Don’t forget to check out our EVENT calendar as activities are always being added.


Free (or affordable) Fun for Kids in Kalamazoo this November

Thursday, November 1

Watch the last day of Hotel Transylvania during Flick’s Fall Family Film Festival. FREE for kids under 12 and only $5 for everyone else.

Make a difference in a military service member’s life by bringing in your Halloween candy to Dr. Dennis’s 8th Annual Halloween Candy Buyback Event. Dr. Dennis will buy back all unopened candy and give you $1 for every pound you bring in and you can enter to win an iPod Touch.

Galesburg Dental Care is teaming up with Operation Gratitude to send candy and toothbrushes to U.S. troops stationed overseas. Dr. Shadi will buy back all unopened candy – $1 for every pound. 

Join a daily Circle Time at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum Monday-Saturday. These literacy-based 20 minute programs are free of charge to families and preschool groups.

Pretend you are somewhere tropical during the Family Fun Time at the Allegan Aquatic Center on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Enjoy a lazy river, slide, fountains and warm water.

Have fun at the weekly themed story time, including songs, fingerplay, and crafts at Bookbug.

Every Thursday, play in the gymnasium for Open Play at Haven Church for caregivers & their little ones ages infant to five years old.

Friday, November 2

Get a leg up on your ice skating skills in time for winter. Attend an Open Skate at Wings West Tuesday through Sunday. Times vary by day.

Pick up a nifty color changing spoon and meet Mechie at Menchie’s Family Fun Time. Kids under 12 enjoy 50% off a FroYo cup with the purchase of a regular cup.

Hang out at Teen Scene at the Otsego Library each week to play games, watch movies and have fun. Featuring XBox Kinect and Nintendo Wii gaming systems and some exciting tabletop games.

Explore Downtown Kalamazoo while checking out beautiful artwork during the monthly Art Hop.

Saturday, November 3

Visit the Otsego District Library and watch The Three Billy Goats Gruff book come to life! Meet and pet three LIVE goats, design a bridge out of LEGOs for the goats to cross, make a goat craft, listen to the book and eat a goat snack.

Come and visit the unique & talented artisans and crafters from cities throughout the Midwest for an extravaganza day of shopping for gifts at the 21st Annual Christmas Boutique Arts & Craft Show. Admission is free.

You and your child can build a custom model military helicopter at the Portage & Plainwell Home Depot locations. Spark a conversation with a Veteran about fighting large fires, moving troops, getting supplies to ships and transporting patients.

Celebrate the fall season at the Jr. Friends of the Antwerp Sunshine Library’s Fall Carnival. The family-friendly event features games, a photo booth, face painting and the chance to win a prize.

Sunday, November 4

Join the Kellogg Bird Sanctuary as they celebrate fall waterfowl migration. Practice waterfowl ID along the lakeshore, participate in games and activities along the trail and warm up with cider at the end of the walk.


Skate over to The Rink in Battle Creek during open skate time. Skate rentals are available.

Monday, November 5

Stop by the FIRST Annual Halloween Candy Buy Back at Portage Pediatric Dentistry. Bring in your extra candy November 5th-8th and earn $1 per pound up to 5 pounds. Candy will be donated to local police and fire stations.

Visit the Portage District Library with your little one and have fun with early literacy as the group sings, reads, rhymes and plays at Baby and Toddler Story Time. A developmentally appropriate playtime will follow.

Let your toddler get some energy out during Toddler Open Play at Kingdom Sports. Available on Mondays and Wednesdays, year round.

Tuesday, November 6

Enjoy a Kids Morning Out making candles at the Kalamazoo Candle Company. $10/per child (up to age 12), drop in any time from 10:00 AM-noon.  Explore the different fragrances and mix & match your favorites until you find the perfect combination. Create your very own labels for your unique-as-you candles.

Every Tuesday during the month of November catch a movie for $5 Ticket Tuesday at the AMC Theatre with an AMC Stubs Membership.

Support Loaves and Fishes in Kalamazoo while skating at Rollerworld. Bring in the “COW-Can of the week”, and pay only $2 for admission.

Thursday, November 8

Explore your artistic side with an Adventures in Drawing class at the Portage District Library. For grades 3rd through 5th. Registration required.

Saturday, November 10

Visit Santa’s Bag Craft Show at Marshall High School, featuring homemade crafts by area artists,

Jump start your holiday shopping during the 7th Annual Huskies Holiday Craft and Gift Show at Portage Northern High School. Featuring vendors, crafts, Christmas music, concessions, bake sale and raffles.

Be an Art Detective at the Kalamazoo Institute of Art. The program teaches children 4-8 (with an adult) how to look at and appreciate art through storytelling, guided looking and art-making.

Be a judge and sample some delicious, warm chili at the Chili Cook-Off at the Antwerp Sunshine Library.

Bundle up and make plans to attend a perennial favorite – the 2018 Kalamazoo Holiday Parade. This years’ parade will include traditional holiday-themed floats and music everyone has grown to love over the years.

Sunday, November 11

Why limit yourself to just looking when you can explore nature by listening, sniffing, touching, and tasting? Enjoy nature during a Five Senses Tike Hike at Bow in the Clouds Preserve.

Monday, November 12

Share joys and challenges of parenting 1 thru 3-year-olds while your toddler plays during the facilitated Toddler Talk at the Oshtemo Branch of the Kalamazoo Public Library.

Become a Little Scientist at the Kalamazoo Public Library Central Branch. Early literacy and STEAM activities for preschoolers and their caregivers.

Wednesday, November 14

Join Wednesday Wigglers at Richland Community Library for 20 minutes of wiggling, giggling, jumping, dancing, singing, rhyming and a book or two. All month long.

Saturday, November 17

More shopping at the Holiday Expo and Craft Show at the Kalamazoo County Expo Center. Over 200 booths to shop at this massive annual craft show.

Help out the graduating class of Vicksburg High School by shopping at the Annual Craft Show with over 80 vendors.

Dress up as your favorite superhero and bring some snacks and drinks while you watch The Incredibles 2 at Willard Library in Battle Creek.

Monday, November 19

Listen to music, read a story and enjoy free play time at Kalamazoo RESA Community Playgroup. Free to the public.

Build whatever your heart desires with bricks at Build-o-Rama at Ransom District Library. Your creation will be on display all week.

Friday, November 23

Join the Mayor, City Commissioners, City Manager and Santa as they light Kalamazoo Christmas trees and kick off the holiday season for Kalamazoo.

Visit Battle Creek’s Winter Carnival for face painting, games, activities, food, live music and enjoy the season.

Saturday, November 24

Start Christmas early by stopping by the Christmas Traditions Event at Soil Friends Farm in Galesburg on Saturday or Sunday. Visit with Santa, farm animals, take a hay ride and enjoy some hot cocoa. Christmas trees and family photos are available for purchase.

Monday, November 26

Watch the 54th Annual Downtown Marshall Christmas Parade as spectators, floats, bands, fire trucks and more parade the streets. Don’t miss the fountain lighting beforehand.

Teens can craft a handmade gift for a loved one this winter at the Teen Handmade Gift Studio at the Kalamazoo Public Library Central Branch.

Tuesday, November 27

Enjoy the tot-friendly obstacle course, “baby disco,” indoor free play & get to know other caregivers at Just Move Fitness’ November Play Date.

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By |2018-10-30T12:45:41+00:00November 1st, 2018|Categories: Around Kalamazoo, Fall, Fun Places To Go, Kids, Newly Published, PLAY|Comments Off on Affordable or FREE Things for Kids to Do in November Around Kalamazoo

About the Author:

Leslie is passionate about promoting everything the Kalamazoo area has to offer. A mother of two, she enjoys reading mystery novels, trying out new recipes and browsing Pinterest for new ideas.