15 Fun and Frugal Labor Day Activities

By Amanda Meadows on 3 September 2015 0 comments

So far you probably have two goals for Labor Day: 1.) Not get stuck hosting a barbeque yourself, and 2.) Somehow convince the kids that Disneyland is a bad idea. So what else can be done on the last big weekend of summer? Try these 15 leisurely ways to enjoy Labor Day.

1. A Union Parade

Since 1894, there have been parades in nearly every major city to celebrate the labor of the American worker. Why not enjoy the pageantry and patriotism? Set up chairs to view the parade and support local workers!

2. See an Outdoor Movie

Grab your coolers, folding chairs, blankets, and set up camp on a lawn to see an old favorite movie. If there's a classic drive-in theater near you (which would be lucky, as there are only a few left in existence), why not roll up to see a new movie?

3. The County Fair

Without fail, there is always a county fair within a couple hours' drive from anywhere. This is an easy and fun way to spend a day watching shows, eating crazy street food, and enjoying rides with the family. The county fair is a can't-fail plan.

4. Shakespeare in the Park

Class it up with a relaxing Shakespeare play or two in the park. Local community theatres put on shows like these all the time throughout the summer. Catch one before the season ends.

5. Visit a Museum for Free

Did you know Bank of America customers can visit select museums for free? It's a cool perk worth using at least once per year! This is a great time, since this is usually the time for big and popular exhibits.

6. A Classic Car Show

In places like Southern California, local parks are a beacon for classic cars on the weekend. Look up classic car meetups near you to enjoy watching beautiful vehicles nearly a century old riding by — some with hydraulics!

7. Enjoy the Beach

Always easy, why not take an impromptu trip to the ocean, lake, or river for some leisurely fun? Pack up a delicious picnic to enjoy there, then finish it off with some boardwalk ice cream.

8. Visit the Science Center

Take the kids to the local science center for a quick brush-up course before school officially starts. Summer exhibits (like Los Angeles' current Dead Sea Scrolls) tend to come with really cool 3D movies and lots of air conditioning!

9. Local Summer Concerts

Summer concert series tend to end around Labor Day, so this will likely be a big show. Check your local city hall website for symphonies, live bands, or music festivals happening in town.

10. Lay Under the Stars

Bored with the offerings within city limits? Take a quick drive to the nearest mountains or desert, find a place to camp for a night, and lay under the stars. It might just be a carefree balmy night to remember when you're back at work.

11. Take the Train

Sometimes it doesn't matter where you go, but how you do it. There are tons of easy and fun train trips to take anywhere in the U.S. that are actually very reasonably priced.

12. Chill at a Skating Rink

Skating rinks are so passe they are cool again! If you want to enjoy some kitschy fun, hit up the nearest roller rink for a cheap date. Brazing hot and need a cooler activity? Try brushing up on your hockey skills in an indoor ice rink.

13. The Farmers Market

Not interested in planning a trip, but want to celebrate the time of year in a culinary fashion? This is a great time for the farmers market: so much good stuff is in season. Pick up the freshest fruit and vegetables, soak in some live music, and taste some free cheese samples.

14. Hang at a Brew Festival

Sometimes you just need an excuse to drink. Luckily, brew festivals are gaining popularity everywhere in the nation. Sure, they tend to cost somewhere between $30–$70, but look at it this way: tickets usually include unlimited beer and lots of bite size snacks to gorge on. Look up a nearby festival and go with some friends.

15. Stay Inside and Read

Never overrated, it's hard to say no to staying indoors. You didn't get invited to a wedding or goaded into another boring barbeque, so congratulations! Why not let the world rave on while you enjoy your couch, air conditioning, and a good book. Have you read Yes, Please yet?

What are your plans for the Labor Day weekend?

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