MoneySavingMom.com
FREEBIE LIBRARY!
Join my email list and get FREE ACCESS to the MSM Freebie Library, including my top printables & eBooks.

Category: Frugal Fun

Free Build & Grow Event at Lowe’s on March 14, 2020

Looking for a fun free event to do with the kids? Check out this free Build & Grow Event at Lowe’s.

Lowe’s is hosting a Build & Grow Event on March 14, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.. where kids can build a tabletop basketball game!

Each child registered gets to participate in hands-on activities and take home some freebies, including this item! Spots are limited so be sure to register now. Participating locations only.

Thanks, Freebies4Mom!

Free National Park Day | January 20, 2020

Love national parks? Don’t miss the next Free National Park Day on January 20th!

{Psst! be sure to also check out these 10 ways to save on visiting National Parks with kids! And don’t forget about the Every Kid In A Park promotion!}

Arches National Park

Free National Park Day

Did you know there are several times per year that National Parks offer completely FREE entrance without having to pay?

The next FREE Entrance Day will be on January 20th in celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day!

See all the entrance-free days for 2020 here.

Looking for more FREE kids activities?

Go here to see the most recent FREE Kids Activities available! And don’t forget to check out our Kids Eat Free list!

What’s your favorite National Park? We’d love to hear in the comments!

10 Ways to Save on Visiting National Park with Kids

If you love visiting national parks or have always wanted to visit some, then be sure to check out these great ways to save on visiting National Parks with kids!

{Looking for more budget-friendly tips on vacationing as a family? Check out our posts on Creative Ways to Fund Family Vacations, Tips to Plan a Memorable Vacation Without Spending a Fortune, and Money-Saving Vacation Tips.}

Save on National Parks with Kids

Guest post from Brigitte of BrigitteBrulz.com

Did you know there are over 400 National Park Sites in the United States?!

This includes national historic sites, national recreational areas, national sea shores, national monuments, and just over 60 national parks that you can explore with your family. Check out the National Park Service’s website to find one near you (or for your next vacation).

If you love traveling and adventuring as a family, then be sure to check out these 10 ways to save on visiting National Parks with kids!

1. Purchase or Sign Up for an Annual Pass

Families who frequent national parks that charge a fee may benefit from an annual pass, which is good for 12 months from the purchase month.

Seniors (ages 62+) can take advantage of an annual pass (or even a lifetime pass) aimed specifically at them for an even steeper discount. The senior pass will cover the cost of everyone in a non-commercial vehicle if the site has a per vehicle charge. Great way to enjoy some time with grandkids!

Families with a fourth grader can enjoy free entry at hundreds of locations from September through August by getting a free annual pass through the Every Kid in a Park program. Even homeschooling families with a fourth grader can take advantage of this opportunity!

Active duty military members (and their dependents) can receive free annual passes for many sites. Just ask for a U.S. military annual pass.

Even if your family has an annual pass, it is still advisable to contact parks ahead of time to ensure the pass is accepted at that location.

View from Effigy Mounds

2. Go on Free Days

If you don’t plan to visit the national parks multiple times in a 12 month span, an annual pass may not make sense for your family.

Instead, check to see if they offer any free days. It’s suggested to arrive early and be prepared for large crowds of people on these days!

(NOTE: Some national sites are free all year round.)

3. Check the Events Calendar

Junior Ranger days, astronomy programs, family days, historic days, nature walks, sled dog demonstrations, movies, archaeology days, and photography walks are just a few of the low cost or even free events offered throughout the year at national sites.

Schedule your visits accordingly by checking the events calendar.

4. Check out the Junior Ranger Program

Kids may enjoy participating in the free Junior Ranger Program where they can complete fun yet educational activities and earn badges at each national park.

Even kids who don’t have an opportunity to visit many national parks can earn badges at home! They can complete booklets about bats, archaeology, caves, the Underground Railroad, and more.

National Parks Junior Ranger Badge

5. Create a Webrangers Account

Kids (and even interested adults) can earn virtual badges and rewards as they complete activities while learning about people, history, animals, nature, science, puzzles, and parks through the Webrangers program.

Registration is free and simple- just create a user ID and password. Once an account has been created, all of the completed activities are saved so progress can easily be tracked.

Kids can even have fun personalizing their own virtual ranger station! They get to choose a theme and customize the walls, shelves, chair, desk, floor, picture, and window view. What a great way to get kids excited about visiting National Parks and learning more!

6. Carpool

By carpooling with others, you can split the cost of the entrance fee if the site charges a per vehicle fee.

7. Stop by the Visitor’s Center

Visitor’s centers often provide free maps, guides, suggested tips, exhibits, and even videos to ensure you get the most out of your visit.

woods in a national park

8. Talk to Park Rangers

Park rangers are often quite knowledgeable about the area and can offer additional suggestions and information about the site.

You may even be able to get a personal tour if you ask (particularly on a non-busy day)!

9. Plan Ahead

Be sure to ceck out the site’s “plan your visit” section! It’s full of great information about fees, hours, things to do, suggestions, and more to make the most out of your visit. It’s helpful to have an idea of what you want to see ahead of time since some parks are so big!

Also, check the weather to ensure you are wearing weather-appropriate clothing for the day.

Walking Stick in a national park

10. Bring Supplies

Besides wearing weather-appropriate clothing, comfortable footwear, and a hat, it may be beneficial to bring water, a camera, sunglasses, bug spray, and sunscreen.

Finally, don’t take a bag for collecting specimens since it is illegal to remove items from national sites.

Instead, bring a bag for any trash you may have. And take pictures of all of the neat rocks, shells, and leaves if you want a record of them!

What other tips do you have for visiting National Parks with kids?

Brigitte Brulz is a homeschooling mom, creator of the Adventure Writing Prompt Journal, author of the book Pickles, Pickles, I Like Pickles, and freelance writer. She offers free coloring pages, activity ideas, and more on her website at BrigitteBrulz.com.

More Budget-Friendly Vacation Tips:

Our Visit to Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery

Have you checked out Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery in Ozark, MO? In this post, I share about our recent trip there, the deals I found, and my honest thoughts on the store.

Deals at Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery

 

Visiting Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery

Our family met up with all of my extended family this past week in Lampe, MO for our annual week at the lake trip. On our way home, we stopped at Lambert’s Cafe in Ozark, MO for lunch.

I had mentioned this on Instagram stories and one of my followers messaged me and said we had to check out this discount store that was close to Lambert’s called Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery.

(Note: they don’t seem to have an actual website that I could find. They do have a very regularly-updated Facebook Page.)

It just so happened, that we were at the gas station right down the road when I read the message and it just so happened that we had some wiggle room in our day. So I asked Jesse if we could run into the store to check it out.

I Was So Impressed With the Deals!

Honestly, because of all of the great deals I often find at my local stores, it takes a lot to impress me when it comes to grocery deals. And when we first walked in and I looked at some of the prices, I figured that this might have a few good deals but probably most of the prices weren’t anything to get too excited about.

But then I kept looking and I started getting more and more excited. I should have known one of my followers wouldn’t steer me wrong!

I picked up a few boxes of $0.49 cookies and crackers and then a few more. Pretty soon, when I started dropping things because my arms were full, Jesse looked at me and said, “Um, I think you need to get a shopping basket.”

That was the point when I knew that I wasn’t going to make it out of this store with “just a few purchases” as I had initially planned on. I was quickly falling in love with Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery.

There were SO many, many good deals! I was especially impressed with the prices on crackers and cookies. They had boxes and boxes and boxes of name brands that were $0.49 to $0.99!

Also, I discovered that if you kept looking, there were many that were marked down to half price!

The Best Deals Were on Snack Items

Some of the prices were more than what I’d pay at my grocery stores when pairing coupons and sales. However, most of the snack prices were less expensive than I can ever find.

For instance, Jesse was thrilled to find Sunflower Seeds for $0.49/bag!

All of the protein bars — including RXbars — were $0.50 each!!

They even had this medicine area with $0.49 items!

I found a number of organic items at great prices, too!

And the candy prices were so good. My kids just couldn’t believe it!

So much for buying just a few things!

How Much I Spent at Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery

Jesse laughed as he saw me walking towards him with my precariously balanced basket. I couldn’t fit one more item in so I knew it was time to call it quits. (We didn’t have a lot of extra space in the car, otherwise I probably would have purchased 2-3 times as much!)

Guess how much we paid for this entire basket full of stuff? $14!!!

Basically, I felt like we were shopping at Dollar Tree! That said, since so many of the items were just $0.49 each, it felt even better than Dollar Tree!

If you are ever in or near Ozark, MO, I highly recommend checking out Christian County Discount Freight & Grocery!

Summer Movies for Kids | 2019 Discounts and Deals!

Looking for some frugal fun for the kiddos this summer? Be sure to check out this round-up of all the best discounts on summer movies for kids!

{Looking for other fun summer deals? Don’t miss our round-up of the best Summer Reading Programs! Plus, kids can bowl for free and skate for free at many participating locations this summer! And don’t forget to stop by Sonic after 8 p.m. for half-price ice cream shakes!}

Summer Movie Deals for Kids

Summer Movies for Kids 2019

If you’re looking for a great way to have some frugal fun with your kids this summer, then be sure to check out this list of discounts on kids’ movies!

Regal Cinemas — Each Tuesday and Wednesday at 10 a.m., participating Regal Cinemas are offering moviegoers of all ages a selection of G or PG-rated films for just $1! Valid through September 4, 2019.

Cinemark Theaters — Participating Cinemark theaters are offering a 10-Week Cinemark Summer Movie Clubhouse promotion. If you purchase in advance at the Box Office, then you can get up to 10 tickets to select G- or PG-rated movies for just $5 — which makes it just $0.50 per movie! Valid from May 27 – September 8, 2019.

AMC Theaters — AMC Theaters will be offering a kid’s movie ticket and AMC KidsPack for just $4 every Wednesday at 10 a.m. over the summer! The KidsPack includes kid’s popcorn, fountain drink, and FrootiTooti fruit snacks.

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema — Kids ages 3+ can enjoy family favorite films for just $1, $3, or $5 – your choice! Movies screen daily at 10:30am.

Cineplex— Participaint Cineplex Theaters are offering family favorite films each Saturday morning at 11 a.m. for just $2.99 per film!

Classic Cinemas — Watch PG-rated films for just $1 at 10 a.m. every Wednesday! Also, be sure to arrive early at 9 a.m. so you can meet some of your favorite characters and join in on the fun games & activities! Valid June 5 – August 7, 2019.

Marcus Theaters — View your favorite family flicks for just $3 on Sundays, Mondays and Wednesdays, June 16 – August 14, 2019. Additionally, popcorn and fountain drinks will be just $2.75 each!

Studio Movie Grille — Escape the summer heat and watch $1 screenings of recent, popular, children films through August 30, 2019.

Harkins Theaters — Kids can enjoy a movie each week for 10 weeks, for less than $1 per film. Price varies by the theater, but ranges from $5 to $7 for the whole summer.

Paragon Theaters — Enjoy free kids movies at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from June 11 – August 8, 2019.

Metropolitan Theatres — Summer Kids Film Series will be taking place on Tuesdays at 10 a.m. for just $2 per movie. Paseo Nuevo and Metrolux 14 also have shows on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m., and Camino Real has shows every Thursday.

Cobb Theatres — Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 10 a.m. kids can enjoy free movies! Doors open at 9:30 a.m. and tickets are valid for same day only.

Megaplex Theatres — Megaplex Theatres is offering young fans and their families a fun summer filled with a movie pass! See 10 movies for just $10.

Bowtie Cinemas — Kids can see a free movie on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10 a.m. from June 25th through August 21st.

Phoenix Theatres — See a free movie each Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at 10 a.m.. Doors open at 9 a.m. and all age groups are welcome. In addition, they will be offering a special Kiddie Meal!

Georgia Theatre Company — Participating Georgia Theatre Company locations are offering a Summer Kid Show Series at 10 a.m. every Tuesday and Thursday in June and July! Admission is just $1.50! Also, get drinks and popcorn for just $1.50 each!

Ultra Star Cinemas– Kids can see a movie Monday through Friday at 9:30 a.m. for just $1 per film!

kids watching movie

Do you know of any other discounts on summer movies for kids? Let us know if we missed any!

Thanks, Hip2Save!

Free Summer Reading Programs 2019

If you’re looking for summer reading programs for kids, this is our comprehensive list of all the completely FREE programs!

{Looking for other fun summer deals? Kids can bowl for free and skate for free at many participating locations this summer! And don’t forget to stop by Sonic after 8 p.m. for half-price ice cream shakes!}

Summer Reading Programs for Kids

Believe it or not, it’s almost that time of year again — when school is out and summer reading programs abound. Yay! (Well, some of you might not be saying “yay!”, but we do because my kids LOVE them some summer reading programs!)

Free Summer Reading Programs 2019

Do your kids love to read, too? If so, this is our big list of all the FREE summer reading programs that are available nationally!

Amazon — Kids who read any eight books this summer can bring their list of books read to the nearest Amazon Retail Store to receive a Star Reader Certificate and their choice of a free book.

Audiobook Sync — SYNC will give away two complete audiobook downloads per week for teens 13+. Sign up to get notifications when the free audiobook downloads are available.

Barnes & Noble — Earn a free book through the Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Program for kids in grades 1-6.

  1. Read any eight books this summer and record them in your Summer Reading Journal (English or Español ). Tell them which part of the book is your favorite, and why.
  2. Bring your completed journal to a Barnes & Noble store between August 1st and August 31st, 2019.
  3. Choose your free book from the books listed on the back of the reading journal.

Books-A-Million — Read any four books from the Summer Reading Adventure section in-store or online and receive a free drawstring backpack (while supplies last).

Half Price Books — Kids 14 or younger can read 15 minutes per day to reach a total of at least 300 minutes. After that, they can take their completed reading log to their local store to earn Bookworm Bucks before August 29th. (In addition, they have a summer reading program for teens.)

Lifeway Stores– Read six books over the course of the summer and memorize six Scripture verses. Then, complete your journal and the online form to redeem your prizes (Choose from one of nine books, plus receive a free Bible, while supplies last). This program is geared toward grades 1 through 6 and even toddlers, ages 1 to 5. However, all are welcome to join in the adventure!

Scholastic — Kids can enter their summer reading minutes online to unlock digital rewards as they complete weekly reading challenges and access book excerpts, videos, and other summer-exclusive content.

Showcase Cinemas — Bookworm Wednesdays entitles kids to free admission to a select children’s film when they present a book report at a participating Cinema de Lux, Showcase, or Multiplex Cinemas box office. Accompanying parents or guardians and children under six years of age receive free admission and do not need to submit a book report.

TD Bank – Kids in grades Kindergarten through 5th can earn $10 from TD Bank when they read 10 books this summer. Simply print out the Summer Reading Form, write down the names of the books read on the form and then take the form to the nearest TD Bank. You will receive the $10 in a new or existing TD Simple Savings account.

Local Libraries — Above all, don’t forget about your local library! Most of them offer fun summer reading programs with prizes and more.

Bonus: Don’t forget about the Pizza Hut Book-It Program that runs each school year!

Download our FREE Kid’s Summer Reading Printable Pack!

free kid's summer reading challenge printable pack

Looking for a fun way to encourage and motivate your kids to read more? Or need a creative way for your kids to keep track of all the books they read through summer reading programs this year?

Be sure to download our FREE Kid’s Summer Reading Printable Pack! It comes with a reading challenge, reading time tracker, and fill-in-the-blank summer reading list.

Do you know of any other Summer Reading Programs we should add to this list? Let us know in the comments!