Low-Cost and No-Cost Entertainment Ideas
Being strapped for cash doesn’t mean you have to give up having fun. It simply means you need to think outside the box. There are many low-cost, no-cost ways to entertain yourself and your family. Here are just a few.
* Play a game. Whether you choose board games, video games or even outdoor games, the whole family can have some fantastic quality fun with multi-player games. Make it even more fun by planning ahead and dressing the part. If you’re playing football, wear your team colors, smudge black under your eyes and don’t forget your touchdown dance. Hold a dance competition with 80s music and give yourself some ‘big hair’. A classic game of hide and seek can be spruced up by everyone wearing black.
* Make your own pizza or sundaes. Pizza nights are always a hit with kids and it’s a great way to get the whole family involved. Buy premade pizza crusts, set out various pizza toppings and let everyone create their own masterpiece. Instead of having pizza every time, consider hosting a “make your own sundae” night.
* Take a walk, ride a bike or take a drive. Long walks and bike rides are especially fun when you’re with loved ones. Not only do you get fresh air and the enjoyment of one another’s company, but both are good for your health as well. If walks or bike riding isn’t your thing, consider loading up the family and taking a drive. Be adventurous by randomly picking a road and see where it leads.
* Watch a movie. Many libraries and museums host free movies on certain days of the month. And some libraries offer a selection of DVDs that you can borrow for a night or two. If you own movie that you no longer watch, websites such as SwapaDVD.com allow users to trade DVDs for the cost of postage. DVDs can be obtained cheaply at yard sales and flea markets.
* Attend a performing arts event. Whether it’s dance, music, comedy or theater if you live near a city, especially one with a performing arts college nearby, you have access to a variety of low-cost, no-cost events. Check your local newspaper for free concerts, plays, dances, musicals, magic shows, and more.
* Visit the library. In addition to being a free source for books, most libraries host free children’s programs as well as adult workshops on a variety of topics. Check their schedule for more info.
* Attend a lecture. If you live near a university, free lectures are always offered on numerous topics. Even without a university, many communities feature appearances by authors, actors and other guests of interest.
* Check your local house of worship’s schedule. Church can be a great source of free activities such as outings, exercise classes, crafts, book groups, and children’s activities. There is something for the whole family.
* Help a pet. Animal shelters are always in need of responsible volunteers. Not only are you giving back to the community, but caring for animals is also very rewarding. Talk to your local shelter to see how you can help.
* Some farmers’ markets, community gardens and nurseries offer free tours and gardening classes throughout the year. In addition, others offer events such as craft projects, petting zoos, holiday festivals, performing arts shows and family activities.
Not only are these activities free or cost very little, many are also educational. And while teens may first grumble about these types of activities, if you are enthusiastic about them, your children are more likely to follow your lead.