Since we choose to have a large family, we don't travel very much. At least not as much as we'd like to. We do, however, travel or Omaha, Nebraska once a year and try to make one other trip in the spring.
We LOVE to find local things to do with the kids that is cheap, or at least local.
Here are some places we have found. They are in no specific order.
We actually won tickets from a library drawing the girls participated in for a summer reading program.
We then go to Cub Foods and get a coupon book and ride tickets for cheaper then what you will find at the fair.
We hit up any/all the food places that have coupons as well as let the kids get a certain amount of ride tickets so it's split evenly.
There are PLENTY of free things that you can do at the fair too!
Go EARLY and plan on staying all day.
For our size family, it's worth paying for parking. We can run back to the car if we need to instead of parking blocks away or trying to bus.
Large Apple selections with trees that are just tall enough for the kids to reach.
Raspberry bushes for what feels like a good mile.
Apparently feeding the animals is a job for twins...
There's also a small corn maze we LOVE to visit every year.
We don't even go for the maze, we go for all the other fun things you can do as a family.
WE LOVE THIS SKATING RINK!
We go every year with the kids from church!
It's great for kids learning to skate and they offer little kid safety blades as well as regular skates and blades.
There's a food bar, laser tag, and a prize center.
Santa comes and gives out presents around Christmas.
They also play games throughout the day for prizes like the Hokey Pokey or hula hoop contest.
And relatively cheap.
My husband and I used to go to this even year through our courtship and early years of marriage. We will still occasionally go on a date here and there when we are bold enough for a cold night out. It's a modest little outdoor rink thats a blast to go to.
And for Coffee...
(7)Dunn Brothers on Grand Ave is my favorite. This was the FIRST Dunn Brothers and still has the feel of a nice, private-owned, not large chain coffee joint. I have been going to that Dunn Brothers since before my husband and I ever met. When my dad and I first moved to Saint Paul, this was the coffee shop I would sit at. I would sing open mike at this coffee house on the 1st and 3rd Sunday's of the month and drink my Cafe Au Lait (Half Milk, Half Espresso!).
(8) Mississippi Market Classes
My local Health Food Co-op called Mississippi Market has really neat classes that you can take and learn about all sorts of things from cooking an asian inspired meal to making your own medicine.
I recently bought my first "ticket" to a class using the website EventBrite.com.
You can use this sight to look for events in your local area. You can even use it to sell tickets to your event. Pretty cool :)
Hope this inspires you to get out and do something local with you family!
It's great fun and builds cool memories.
Even just a stroll around town looking at the lights this time of year is a blast.