Who doesn't want to save money? And who doesn't want to have fun? If only there were a way to unite those two desires! Here is a list of free or super cheap things to do.
1. Exploring. Get that bike that's sitting in the garage gathering spiderwebs (I'm talking to myself here, by the way, as I look at my pollen-covered bike on my balcony) and take it for a spin around the neighborhood. No bike? Then hoof it. Check out your local trails and parks. You might think there's nothing worth exploring in your area, but that's probably because you've only ever seen it from your car window.
2. High school performances and sporting events. Go to the local high school's next band performance or baseball game. The kids appreciate the support, and you'll be entertained for a few hours by players who truly love what they're doing. This also applies to community colleges, although most events there do charge. Last December, I went to a holiday performance of my college's swing band. It was free (they were taking donations for a charity, so I paid what I felt appropriate), and it was a fantastic concert.
3. Take a staycation. I can't believe I just used that word. Ugh. Anyway, take a long weekend to enjoy your city. You can probably find free or inexpensive museums, classes, or tours.
4. Go to the library! Really. Read about things that you're interested in. Sometimes, I check books out and I never get around to reading them, but just going there and gazing at stacks of books piques my curiosity. Get a book that teaches you how to do something--a hobby, bike repair, etc. There is also some great people-watching to be had at the library. My nearest library also has flyers up for other community events, which can lead to more cheap thrills.
5. Volunteer. Go help others. Need I say more? It probably won't cost much, and it's certainly time well spent.
6. Photography. I know you already have a digital camera because you post silly things on Facebook every day, so you don't have to spend anything here. Combine this with any of the above activities, and voila! Instant entertainment.
7. Write or call someone. I mean, write an actual letter or full email or call someone with the intention of having a long conversation to catch up. When was the last time you did this?
8. Start a blog! No really. Blogging is awesome, and I don't pay a thing. I've "met" lots of people through blogging, and many of my relationships have strengthened because of blogging.
Do you have any tips for inexpensive entertainment?