Free and Frugal Things to Do This Spring

Spring has finally sprung! And not a moment too soon, especially for those of us in the northeast US and other areas recently covered with snow. Whether you're looking to finally emerge outdoors, or you're dealing with April showers, there are plenty of free and frugal things to do this spring to keep you and your family entertained.

Free and Frugal Things to Do This Spring

Head Outdoors

  • Check out what's blooming. Whether it's tulips and daffodils or cherry blossoms, take a walk and enjoy the flowers. Try a nearby arboretum or botanical garden.
  • Take a day trip to a national park or your local nature trails. Take photos of the birds and other animals as souvenirs.
  • Start a garden. Whether you have lots of land or just a few flowerpots on the windowsill, you can still get started with some flowering plants, herbs, or vegetables. Or look for a community garden where you can join others in making things grow.
  • Take a bike ride out in the sunshine. If you don't own a bike of your own, check apps and websites that let you rent or borrow a bike for free. Just don't forget your helmet.
  • Take your dog on an extended walk. Check out the local dog park or hiking trail.
  • It's my favorite time of year…baseball season! While the major leagues are an expensive ticket, attending a minor league game for the hometown crew is more affordable.
  • Make a picnic lunch or a barbecue at the local park. Some even have picnic tables and grills to use. Share a meal with your special someone or your whole family.
  • Do some good in the world. Lots of charities host fundraising walks and bike rides. It's a great way to get outside, get fit, and help those in need.
  • Go stargazing. Use an app to find a local star map or a site like StarDate to plan a meteor shower viewing.
  • If the winds are blowing, it's kite-flying time. Buy an inexpensive one or learn how to make your own at MyBestKite.
  • Spring is the start of festival season. So head out to celebrate town fairs, music fests, and church socials.
  • It's also time for yard sales and flea markets. Find a bargain from someone else's goods or have one of your own sales after you finish spring cleaning.
  • Visit the zoo. Smaller zoos tend to be more reasonable and don't forget nearby farms that may let you visit with the animals for free.

Get Cultured

  • Check out plays and performances at your local school or town theater.
  • Plan a day at the museum, whether it's fine art, a historical site, or scientific wonders. Great for both children and adults, and you may even learn something! Check their website for free days or see if your credit card or library offers free admission benefits.
  • Speaking of the library, take a look at what events are going on there: classes, lectures, or even concerts and movie showings. While you're there, check out a good book, a CD or DVD, an eBook, or one of their many other resources.
  • Or stay at home and browse free eBooks from You don't even need an eReader, you can read them right in your web browser.
  • Learn a new skill. Organizations of all kinds offer workshops and classes, whether it's DIY projects at your local home improvement store, cooking classes at the adult school, or creative writing workshops at a local college. If you'd prefer to stay at home, the internet is your playground with how-to articles and videos on just about every skill imaginable.
  • Create art of your own. Try out your creative efforts with paint and canvas, words in a notebook, a musical instrument, or DIY crafts.


  • Join a club. Look on sites like Meetup to find groups who share your hobbies and interests. Can't find one? Create your own!
  • Host a game night. Get a group together for board games, card games, or video games.
  • If reading is your passion, join a book club. Don't worry if there isn't one nearby, join one online at Goodreads.
  • Have a potluck supper. Ask family and friends to come together and each bring a dish to share. Not only does this distribute the cost and effort, but you get to try a variety of dishes.
  • Volunteer in your community. Use VolunteerMatch to find local opportunities that you care about.

There are so many activities that are free or nearly free, we've just become conditioned to think of the ones that are more costly. Besides, sitting back and being entertained is not nearly as much fun as having an experience in which you participate. So circle an item or two on this list, or come up with a list of your own, and make a plan for the weekend.

What activities do you enjoy in the springtime?

Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman at (with changes)