Things to do With Your Family that Require Little or No Money

Not everyone is feeling the positive effects of a booming economy. In fact, in middle America, the blue-collar workers are still trying to make ends meet, and often that’s with two people working. To make matters worse, after your work week comes to a close, you don’t have any money left over to enjoy an evening out.  On the upside, there are many things you can do with your family to relax, have a few laughs and make the most of your time off. 

Karaoke Night 

Most people love to show off their vocal skills, especially when it’s in their comfort zone, their home. You can create a proper stage made out of dismantled boxes then painted to offer a fitting backdrop for each performer. You don’t have to have a deluxe setup like the ones often available in the local pubs. A simple iPhone or a suitcase record player will work just fine, with each having Bluetooth capabilities. 

Movie Night 

For a couple of bucks, you can rent a new release through Red Box or other similar platforms. You could then watch the film as a family with your favorite popcorn and a few other snacks preferred by moviegoers. Especially if it’s a scary movie on a cold winter night, it provides a perfect way for parents and children to snuggle up together. You could even have discussions or even some analysis of the kid’s favorite character. If the film is about demons or angels, for example, you could go to sites like to learn about the numerous meanings of the characters’ names and what they represent. During the warm-weather months, set up a projector in the backyard and make the experience similar to going to a drive-in movie. 

A Day at the Park 

With everyone glued to their electronic devices, communication between families is quickly diminishing. Make a Saturday an all-day adventure by taking the brood on a trip to the local park. There are nature trails and bike trails and large fields for tossing a ball or flying a kite. Don’t forget to pack a sizeable picnic basket, as your family is sure to become hungry from all the day’s activities.     

Farmers Market 

Want to encourage your children to eat better? Take them to the local farmer’s market. The selection of fresh fruits and vegetables, homemade ciders and other healthy household items is sure to spark interest. Let everybody help select the food and then go home and prepare a wonderful family meal together. 

Visit a Museum 

All museums are not free. However, some allow you to make an appropriate monetary pledge to help them keep up with maintenance. Give only what you can afford, or seek out museums in your area that don’t charge a fee. There is a wide range of topics with some maintaining a focus on the arts, America’s history, dinosaurs or technology. Visiting a museum is a fun day for all with an education lesson worked in without notice. 

Local Parades/Music Festivals 

During the summer months, most towns or villages host events such as a parade, a music festival or cook-off. While there are vendors there eager to serve for a nominal fee, for the most part, it’s a fun family day away from home for cheap. 

Clean out the Basement/Attic 

While cleaning out the basement or attic may not sound like a fun family day, you might be surprised. If you haven’t checked the inventory in many years, you may find old treasures from the past that bring an instant smile. Take a weekend to go through all the boxes and then have a yard sale. With the money you make, treat your family to a dinner out. 

Craft Party 

Craft parties are a great way to spark imagination in the young and old alike. Scraps of material, zippers and buttons collected from torn garments and cardboard boxes are just a few items you can get for free around the house. The local craft store has periodic times throughout the year where they put items up for sale ridiculously cheap. Take advantage of these sales and stock your drawers for the next upcoming party. 

Just because finances are tight, doesn’t mean that you have to fall into a depression. There are literally hundreds of ways to make a special day without having to spend a lot of money.

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