Tag Archives: free fun

Financial Games for this Week

On the US Mint website, there are several games for children to play. One is called “Break the Bank” where you answer trivia questions and break the piggy bank.

A very simple counting game for young children is at funbrain.com. It allows the user to make change back.

On PBS kids’ website, there’s a game called “Mad Money,” which is both simple and fun.

Although this may not be the perfect game for “financial education,” it is fun and easy to play. You have to collect fruit for money.

Hope you enjoy your games this week!

Inexpensive Ways to Have Fun for the Movie Lover

Drive-in Movies
I’m a huge fan of drive-in movies. Not only are they historical (in my opinion) they are a lot of fun. Often times, the drive-in will show a double feature (two movies), for one price. The prices are inexpensive. Children may even get in free! Click here to search for drive-in movie theatres in your area.

Some drive-ins even give discounts to people who drive classic cars. In addition, for those of you that are old movie fans like me, some drive-ins have nights where they play the classics. Unfortunately, none that I know of in North Carolina.

It’s a great place for a date and for a night with the family. They’ve usually got inexpensive food, an outdoor area to play, and a great atmosphere. I’d recommend bringing the bug spray though, especially if you live in an area with a lot of mosquitoes.

Theatre in the Park
Another idea to explore is a theatre in the park concept. Many museums and outdoor amphitheaters offer this option in the summer. Here in Raleigh/Cary, the NC Museum of Art and Cary’s Koka Booth Amphitheater offer some movies. Last summer I had the opportunity to watch some suspenseful thrillers. What a great way to spend your night!

Make Your Own Drive-In Movie Theater
I’ll break this into two categories. The first, using your backyard or your house for making a movie theatre. Popular Mechanics wrote an article on it as well as several other websites. You have the flexibility of making it however you’d like.

The second category, websites like mobmov.org (mobile movie), offer a way for people to get together and do a mobile drive-in movie theatre. You can sign up for mobmovian in your area, or you can follow the tutorial to make your own. The directions on the website are very detailed and require that the projective is located inside and powered by a car. There is even an option for filmmakers to release their films through MobMov.

Guerilla Drive-In offers something very similar. Santa Cruz has their own, but the website offers a do-it-yourself feature.

Of course, it’s important to follow state and federal laws. You may need a permit or other types of permission.

Movie Exchange
An idea that I had with my friends was to exchange DVDs. We had a little “party”, exchanged DVDs that we both wanted to watch, then return them back when we’re finished. In addition to watching a lot of movies, it gives us something to talk about and give feedback on.

Movie-Themed Parties
I always love it when my friends and I create a movie marathon. My movie marathons probably aren’t as exciting as most, but my friends and I stay up all night and watch movies. For example, we had an Audrey Hepburn marathon, where we had popcorn and sweets, dressed up like Audrey and each brought our favorite Audrey movie to the party. It was a simple, in-expensive way to have fun.

I feel like I am falling into the trend here, but I love Redbox. I’ve signed up to receive free one-night rentals. If you sign up for redbox, they send you credits in your email. The rentals are $1.00 plus tax for each day and they’re perfect for a date night, if you return within a day. I’ve gotten to see new releases the day they come out onto DVD.

One problem I’ve had is that I wanted a widescreen version of a movie, but did not have the option to choose and received a fullscreen. Even after adjusting my settings on the DVD player and such, I was still disappointed that it wasn’t widescreen.

I am a movie lover, so I’ve signed up for netflix. Typically I use this to get copies of older movies and not new releases. I also hooked up my Nintendo Wii to my netflix account to enjoy movies whenever. My movie recommendations and instant que come up and I just press play. It’s really nice, but not worth the monthly payment if you don’t want movies often. For the movies I cannot get on instant play, I receive them through the mail. There are several other devices available to instantly stream netflix, and they are listed on netflix’s website.

I don’t watch television much, but I do babysit. The benefit of streaming through the wii (or any device through netflix) is the availability of TV shows and children’s movies. I’ve seen nearly every Thomas the Train episode/movie available on Netflix.

Online Streaming
Websites such as hulu.com offer online streaming of some movies along with TV shows.

Used DVDs
Buy used. Simple enough :) There are a lot of great vendors that allow you to buy DVDs for cheap. BlockBuster and other stores often sell used DVDs for cheap… and have a bargain bin. Bargain bins are AWESOME! I saw My Cousin Vinny in one a few weeks ago… what a steal ;)

Discount Movie Theatres

I’ve been to several locations that offer a “discounted” movie price. You can search on websites like moviefone for theatres near you, and in the top right of every theater listed, there should be a price listed. However, as far as I know, there is no easy way to search by price.

Independent Movie Theatres
There are some movie theatres that play independent or cult classic films and are relatively inexpensive. They’re usually around college campuses but are a lot of fun. Typically they’re cash-only (probably how they can keep the ticket prices low) and offer some great incentives.

Movie Festivals
I would recommend doing a search on this one, but there are always movie festivals going on in my area. They have independent movie festivals, horror fest movie festivals, and other types.

Movie Theatres: Free and cheap family movies
I was doing a search for free and cheap movies in my area, and this website came up. So I wondered, what about other states?

As I searched “free movies in (insert state)”, several states came up with links for options to free film festivals or free outdoor movies. It may take a little bit of searching or an effort, but there are a lot of great resources for free movies in your state, especially now, during the summertime.

Working At the Movie Theatre
I also know several people that love movies so much, they’ve picked up a part-time job working at one. They get a certain amount of free or discounted passes a month to watch movies.

How do you avoid paying high ticket prices at movie theatres? Any ideas on how to save money?

Inexpensive Ways for your Children to Have Fun this Summer

Summer is here, and to go with the theme of saving money, I thought it would be great to post a list of workshops that children can attend. Not only are they educational, they involve the family!

1. Workshops at Apple
Apple provides two programs, Youth Workshops & Apple Camp. Youth Workshops are more family centered while Apple Camp is focused on the child. Both are great ways to develop Mac skills by using iLife and iWork applications.

2. Michael’s
Michael’s is a great place to take your children for arts & crafts workshops. It’s both a lot of fun and educational. Who knows, you may even get a gift out of it! :)

3. A.C. Moore
A.C. Moore offers arts & crafts workshops as well, and even lists some craft ideas.

4. Lowe’s Home Improvement
Offers some great arts & crafts ideas for the children involving some home improvement techniques.

5. Home Depot
Home Depot offers a lot of workshops and fun activities for the family.

6. Toys R Us
Sometimes Toys R Us offers workshops and fun activities for children.

7. Barnes & Noble
Barnes & Noble offers a lot of activities for children. They have storytime for children of all ages, online story book readings, and several speakers and events. It’s a great way to meet people and have fun.

8. Bass Pro Shops
Bass Pro Shops offer arts & crafts for children

All of these are great ideas for workshops for your children. There are also plenty of local places to check for other types of workshops, such as safety, acting and other sorts of recreational activities. Your local YMCA and Parks & Recreation part of your local government has resources for your children as well as other community organizations.

Another great website to check out for events and speakers is idealist.org. Idealist.org offers a variety of resources including places to volunteer and other ways to get involved in the community.

I’d like to hear about any of the experiences that you’ve had with these workshops, so please comment. Also, if anyone has any additional workshops or activities that they would like to share, that would be appreciated. :)

Inexpensive Ways to Have Fun for the Music Lover

Inexpensive Ways to Have Fun in for the Music Lover (especially while you’re still in college)

1. Get a job at the college radio station / Intern at the Local Radio Station

If your college has a radio station, it may be fun to  volunteer there (or if you can get paid, even better!) There can be several perks to working at a college radio station: you may get free movie passes, free concert passes, and you get to meet bands! Not to mention exposure to a lot of music and culture.

It’s also possible to complete an internship at a local radio station. Even if your major may be finance or social work, there are ways to tie in your skill set. If you’re a social work major, think of current news events or do a public affairs show. You can even tie in journalism.

2.Work at a music venue

This may be more difficult if your college is in a remote area, but music venues need both bartenders, merch people, and bouncers. They also need people to help clean up the venue. The money may not be great (or it may!) but it sure is an experience of a lifetime. You’ll get to meet bands, other music lovers and have stories to tell for years to come.

3.  DJ

I’ve met a lot of people that taught themselves how to be a DJ at events. They’ve had the opportunity to make money playing the music that they love. Remember, each DJ has their own music preference and style and I promise there is an audience that loves yours. I’ve even met DJ’s that only play old tunes such as Elvis and Buddy Holly. Some only play R&B and soul… and classic rock! It’s a great way to meet people and may be a good way to make money.

4. Be a Promoter

Some bands need promotional people. This may include hanging up posters, working the merch table or writing editorial pieces. Although this may be a volunteer job, bands usually put promoters on their guests lists to their shows and sometimes will even allow the promoters to tour with them.

Some music venues and bars also need people to do promotions

5. Scope Out the Flyers Around Campus

There are usually a ton of bands on a college campus that play free shows. Check out flyers and web postings often. I guarantee that they’ll at least be a show every week that you can go to if you do this.

6. Volunteer

There are several nonprofit organizations that help out local musicians or retired musicians. Volunteering for these organizations is a great way to be exposed to music and help out those in need. For example, there is a nonprofit in Asheville, NC http://www.mountainhomemusic.com/ that promotes Appalachian Culture, which includes music and art. This not only will be fun, but it will be great to put on your resume.

7. Write Music Reviews

You can either write for your school paper, create your own blog, or write for a larger organization but a lot of people will pay for your ticket to go to a show if you write a review. If you gain popularity, bands may even request that you be at their show to give them a good review. It’s a great way to network and practice your writing skills. It’s also something great to put on your resume!

8.Work at Music Store

Although I do not know about college campuses world-wide, I do know that on my college campus there were several music stores, both for new and used music. Usually they were more of an “underground scene” but they encouraged their employees to listen to new music and review it for the customers. Some may even have perks such as doing band promotions. It’s a great way to network and meet new people as well as musicians. Besides, it’s a job, right?

Please leave any comments or suggestions.. or inexpensive ways you’ve thought of to have fun.