Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Finding free stuff to do

I'll admit it, I'm a cheapskate. There are always expensive options for "something to do with the kids" --- but equally, there are always cheap or free things to do with the kids too. :) It's just a matter of finding them. Here's a few free (or cheap, because we bought drinks, a cookie, or drove there) things we've done in the last few weeks.

Visited Santa's Wonderland at a Bass Pro Shop in a mall near us. We're not "Santa" people, but there was a coloring table and some *very cool* decorations. You could have your photo taken with Santa (free for the first photo) if you wanted to, as well. Our Bass Pro Shop has a huge wall aquarium with fresh-water fish in it, as well as a lot of stuffed (real) animals around the store, the kids love to look at them. Later we played at the free play place in the mall - 3 hours, for the price of a McDonald's cup of coffee. :) (And every single snack I brought)

The local park. This one is the "awesome" one in the ritsy neighborhood. We have one closer to us, but hey, this one is better. :) It started snowing on us that day. Oh my, winter is here!

If you're a Harrisburg-native, you'll know Chocolate World is free. Hershey Park has a 20 minute ride that shows how they make chocolate --- no matter how many times we see it, the kids love it every time. The free fun size chocolate bar at the end kind of gets them excited too (Momma too...).
We visited an orchard, after all the apples and pumpkins had been picked. We played out by the trees, let the kids play in the rocks, lose their shoes in the long grass, and climbed trees. It's amazing how well kids are entertained by rocks, sticks, and leaves. And if they eat a little dirt, it's not going to kill them! (In fact, I'll suggest that it's good for their immune system).

So there you have it - a few free things. The orchard also had a farmer's market inside, we got to see a small bee hive, lots of veges, and even tested out some Pennsylvania Dutch cookies (and Momma tried a Pumpkin Woopie Pie).


  1. Ok.. Love Hershey's Chocolate World.. and Love Pumpkin Whoopie Pies... better yet Love free and cheap things to do with the kiddos.
    Some of the fun things we do here in Ohio is our local libraries have children's hour for free complete with crafts and usually a snack.
    Our local state park in the spring, summer, and fall run a Wee Discover program for Free for the kiddos and it always includes crafts, a nature walk, and sometimes a snack.. like when we made homemade applesauce. Also when we go to the park we pack a lunch and play on the playground there and have a picnic.
    Another fun thing is we have several Monuments around us.. like soldier memorials and things.. we go there the kiddos love being able to run.. I love that its usually fenced in so they can run with no worries of being injured.
    Our local mall now has a big playland in the middle that is free. Love that I can pack snacks and take them.
    We don't get to do as many of these things as we used to as now I have too many daycare kiddos.. but on the days there are only 2 or 3 we take full advantage of any Free, Fun program we can find.
    Sure looks like your kiddos have been having a great time! Enjoy!!

  2. Sounds fun! The mention of the Pumpkin whoopie pie made me miss home;) I'll be in PA for Christmas (Lancaster) so maybe you, Christina and I could get together? I know it's the holidays so if it's not doable I totally understand, but I just thought I'd throw it out there:)

  3. In my hood, story time is free at the library (Kids), they hold free yoga on Sundays in the spring/summer, and most NYC museums (unbeknownst to all) are free/donation only, meaning you give $1 and you're in. Same goes for the Bronx zoo on Wednesdays! Drive on down! ;-D

  4. One of these days I'm going to come to PA & go to the Hershey place. I've always heard it's a cool place to visit, but hey...free chocolate! I'm in!