Hometown Ideas

Super Cheap Winter Activities

Hi there!

Lately I’ve been struggling to come up with interesting activities to do keep me entertained this winter. Or, more importantly – cheap activities to enjoy with my friends during my Buy Nothing January challenge.

I spent my last winter in Edinburgh enjoying free museums and afternoons reading books in the coffee houses once frequented by JK Rowling :)

So here are a few ideas to get you off the couch and out of the house… 

  1. Check out a Local Museum or Gallery – Some museums offer free admission to the public for one hour a week – like Toronto’s Royal Ontario Museum. Check out your local museum’s website for upcoming events like special lectures or free workshops.
  2. Activities offered on Campus – If you live close to a university campus, check out whether they offer activities for the community. Some universities offer affordable art classes, intramural sports, and even access to climbing walls (hint hint friends) to the general public.
  3. Winter Sports – Winter sports like ice skating, snow shoeing, and cross country skiing are very accessible as long as you’re able to track down some suitable gear. Invest in a pair of skates, borrow from family/friends, or even track down a pair second hand (kijiji?) and enjoy some time in the great outdoors this winter.
  4. Crafting – This option is a great way to keep your hands busy while spending quality time with the girls (or the craftier men in your life). I used to spend hours with my friends in University just folding origami stars and chattering away about everything. Why not try something new – like learning to knit, crochet, or do decoupage? The possibilities are endless.
  5. Local Sports Event – Although big league sporting events are typically pricey, local sporting events are much more affordable and a great chance to spend some time with friends cheering on the home team.
  6. Catch Some Live Music – I don’t know about your town, but where I’m from there are always pubs featuring local artists – often with little or no cover required at all. Stop in with some friends, enjoy a pint, and catch a live show.
That’s all that I can come up with this afternoon – do you have any other ideas that I can add to my list?




3 thoughts on “Super Cheap Winter Activities

  1. Your list is a good start! You could also try checking out the events schedule at the local public library; public pools also sometimes offer free public swims. If you like taking photos, get a group of friends together and go on an urban (or suburban) photo ‘safari’, where you try to capture interesting images of common sights.

  2. Why not act like a kid again? Kids are never bored in the winter, you can make interesting cups of hot chocolate, adding candy canes or nutmeg, or you can just got play in the snow and see who can build the most fashionable snowman. Something my boyfriend and I do sometimes is change into our cutest pajamas around 4 oclock, ( he actually wears footed pajamas!) we build a giant blanket fort, just like we had when we were kids, then we order a pizza and watch really awful b horror movies on the living room floor. It’s also a great idea for a girls night in!

  3. Great list! One option for acquiring the winter sports gear (skates, ski boots, skiis, etc) is Play it Again Sports. I’m not sure if it’s everywhere, but they have a good variety of used equipment, and the staff to help you find the right size/style for you.
    Another thing I’d add to the list is Meetup.com – especially if there are activities that you’d like to do that your friends aren’t as interested in (such as photography or hiking) – you can find a group of people doing pretty much anything you might be interested in, and join one of their events.

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