With the current economy, you may be trying to save extra cash by staying home instead of going out s a family. However, you don't have to! There are plenty of free or cheap activities your family can do together. Here are a few ideas that could work for any city:
Picnic- whether you chose to have a picnic in your own backyard or at the park, this is always a fun idea for younger kids!
Explore your local park- your kids will feel like Lewis and Clark!
Minor league baseball game- this option is 1/4 of what it would cost to see a major league game, but just as fun since most of these ball parks have playgrounds too!
Story time at Barnes- these are free for your little ones, so check your local store or www.barnesandnoble.com for events in your area.
Kids workshops at Lowes or Home Depot- check your local store for schedule.
Camp out in your backyard- save money by pitching a tent right in the comfort of your own backyard! You can even roast marshmallows in your BBQ pit!
Arts and crafts workshops at Michael's- check your local store.
Cultural festivals- these are usually free to attend and have plenty of free activities. However, you will have to pay for food and anything you decide to purchase from one of the vendors.
Parades- free and fun for young children!
Go to the farm- usually free, unless you you pay for rides or anything else they may be selling. Also, if you can find a farm in your area that you can pick your own fruits and veggies, do it! The price per pound is low, and it takes smaller children a longer time to pick one pound! You can pick for and hour and spend less than $20, and in most cases less than $10!
Circus- smaller circuses are usually half the price of the bigger ones, but just as fun!
Museums- free admission usually!
Free concerts- pay attention to your cities event schedule, usually during the summer months you can take in a free concert or two!
Check out www.groupon.com - personalize with your zip code for deals on local businesses in your area. You can save 50% - 90% off of fun things for the family!
Weekend getaway during the week- plan your family trips during the week. Hotels and car rentals usually double in price for the weekend, and you'll also beat the weekend crowds!
Here are some fun things to do in the St. Louis area that won't break the bank:
The Muny has 1,500 free seats available at every show!
The Botanical Gardens is free Wednesdays and Saturdays before noon for St. Louis City and County residents.
Drive in movie theater sound fun? Visit New Town St. Charles Friday nights starting at 8pm, and it's free!
Free Family Nights at the Magic House the 3rd Friday of every month from 5:30 to 9 pm.
The Moolah Shrine Circus! Visit the website for event dates and a voucher for a free children's ticket! ( www.stlshrinecircus.com )
River City Rascals. All the fun of a major league game for less than 1/4 of the price!
Visit Eckerts Farm in Illinois (www.eckerts.com ) or Prouhet Farms in Bridgeton, MO for pick-your-own veggies and fruits!
Check out these sites for coupons: www.familyattractioncard.com and www.fox2now.com/lifestyle/stlmoms/
Remember, a fun day out with the family doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg, so just pay attention for coupons and deals in your area!