Franklin Park Community Days in Columbus

The Palm House at Franklin Park

It’s no secret that I love visits to Franklin Park Conservatory near downtown Columbus. It’s such a great escape from the winter weather and I enjoy watching the gardens come alive in spring and summer.

Over the years I’ve been a member and been to several of their special events like Conservatory Aglow and Blooms & Butterflies. But until recently, I didn’t know about Franklin Park Community Days.

The entry way to the Conservatory features a large Chihuly glass installation. The entry way is encased on two sides in full glass windows and a multi colored sculpture hangs in the middle.
The entry way to Franklin Park Conservatory features Chihuly glass sculptures.

If you’re looking fun on a budget and you live in Columbus or Franklin County, you need to check out Franklin Park Community Days. Tickets are normally $22 per adult and $15 for children ages three and up. But on the first Sunday of every month, admission is free. That’s right, admission is free.

Visiting During Franklin Park Community Days

Natalie visited on the most recent Community Day, just to check it out. She reported that it was crowded, but not so much that she couldn’t enjoy the experience. Her free admission included access to the entire gardens and the inside of the Conservatory as well.

Franklin Park Community Days feature free admission and draw a crowd. This photo shows a large crowd in the common room of the Conservatory.
As you can see, the Conservatory was much more crowded than on a general admission day.

In addition to making her way through the biomes, she was able to enjoy the Blooms & Butterflies exhibit that is currently ongoing. And I personally believe the Chihuly Glass exhibits are reason enough for a visit to the Conservatory.

Plan Ahead

If you plan a visit, you may want to do a little research in advance. On this most recent Community Day, there were live performances on site as well.

An orange butterfly lands on the leaves of a green and red plant.
If you hold still a butterfly might land right on you!

Be sure to head to their web page ahead of time. You can reserve a ticket for you and your family. According to Natalie, the Conservatory did reach capacity during her visit and they had to turn away a few walk-in visitors. Reserving your ticket will make sure you get to experience Franklin Park.

More Free Fun in Columbus Makes Sunday Funday

Since Community Days fall on Sunday, you can make an entire day of free fun. Don’t forget that the Columbus Museum of Art, located just six minutes away, also has free admission on Sundays.

Drums are set up for a performance in the palm house - a large glass room filled with tropical plants. The performance if for Franklin Park Community Day.
Natalie took this photo. They were ready for a performance in the Palm House.

Then, if you’re looking to maintain the budget theme for the day, pack a picnic lunch. You can dine on the steps of the Riverfront Amphitheater with a view overlooking the Scioto River and the city skyline.  And Columbus on-street parking is free on Sundays as well. It’s as if the entire city has conspired to give you a free day of fun!

Thanks for FindingOhio with us today. I love finding things to do in our beautiful state and really enjoy providing ideas that are also budget-friendly or free. If you have any great Ohio ideas that won’t break the budget, let us know either in the messages or by email.

If you’re looking for more great ideas for free fun, check out our visits to the Orton Geological Museum and the Ohio Statehouse. Check back often as we’ll be sharing more ideas from around the Buckeye state. And, as always, we appreciate you sharing our content on social media.

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