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Summer Spending on Kids

July 11, 2012, 9:50 PM by Angela Kennecke

Summer Spending on Kids

How many times have you heard this summer, "Mom, I'm bored!"?

There's no reason for kids to be bored when parents are spending some $16.6 billion to keep them entertained over the summer months. 

According to an American Express survey, parents spend, on average, $600 per child. 

A day of frolicking in the summer sun comes at a price.  For the Staab family of four, it's $100 to get into Wild Water West.

"Got to go somewhere. They have to be entertained," mother Jackie Staab said.

"I'm having fun and they're having fun too," father Jesse Staab said.

Parents aren't shocked at the average of $600 spent on each child over the summer to keep them busy. And families with incomes of more than $100,000 spend nearly double the amount at more than $1,115 per child. 

"[I] kind of splurge on her. I spent more today here than I normally would; but we don't do this a while lot," mother Karen McEntee said.

Day trips to water parks and other locations add up to 63 percent of summer spending on kids.  Camps also take a big chunk of the money.  Revenue at camps has grown by doubled digits in the last couple of years.

"They've done church camp.  Each one went for a week to church camp.  My daughter is also going to do a horse camp next month and some things that are free in town at the outdoor campus," mother Stephanie Luschen said.

Luschen is a mother of three and she consciously tries to keep her spending on her kids to a minimum.

"I do keep it under that because I'm a teacher and I don't have to pay for things to do every day because I'm with the kids," Luschen said.

But just a few extracurricular can bust a family budget. 

"It definitely adds up fast," McEntee said.

The top summer activities for kids include day trips, sports, educational activities, pool and club memberships and day camps.

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