Low Cost Entertainment for Seniors
Aging Matters

Entertainment is a priority for me, but spending money on it isn't. So, I'm on a mission to find low-cost ways to enjoy my free time, spend time with friends, and socialize. For seniors, its important for our health to get out of the house and make connections.

Some people invite me out but it's to dinner, drinks, theater, concerts, in other words, spend a lot of cash. Once in a while, that's fine but every weekend? Instead of spending a lot, ask what is the purpose of going out? It's to catch up with friends, find entertainment, get out of the house and meet new people. All of this done on a budget. Here are several ideas for things to do with little or no money.

Public Library - I'm hooked on it. They have book clubs, coloring nights, concerts, free classes, book signings, computers, DVDs, audiobooks, puzzles, and an unlimited number of books to read. The local library recently sponsored viewing of the eclipse and occasionally, star-gazing with telescopes.

City Parks and trails - nature trails run abundantly in cities large and small for hiking and nature enjoyment. Some parks have rivers where kayaking and canoeing are available. During the summer catch movies, live plays, and music concerts.

Pot luck dinners - staying in and invite friends to share dinner and a streaming movie. Don't worry about doing all the cooking, tell everyone to bring a dish to share. To be thorough, make a list of what each should contribute.

Local art museums have discounted ticket days - it's a fun way to enjoy the arts. In Dallas, the arts district has block parties that bring the crowds to the street for a free community extravaganza.

For the musically inclined, have a get together for a music session. My neighbor sings in a jazz band and invited friends to her home for a jazz bash. They shared their music while guests brought the food and drinks. We listened and joined in the signing.

Volunteer, usher, or man the concessions for area live theatres and see the shows for free. Try acting in a production, it's work but folks tell me it's fun!

Board game evenings - invite friends to play Pictionary, poker, Mahjong, or Charades. Try homemade games like Name that tune, Who is it, or Name that year.

Start a book club - Check with your local library, many offer a book club service where you choose from an extensive list of books, put in your order and borrow enough books for everyone in the club.

With so many choices, you'll save a lot of money. Start now, select one from each category so you'll always find an event on the calendar.

Sign up for AGE with PURPOSE, weekly Newsletter, send email to - Carol@Seniorcare.com.

Carol Marak, aging advocate, Seniorcare.com. She's earned a Certificate in the Fundamentals of Gerontology from UC Davis, School of Gerontology.

Part of the Aging Matters Weekly Syndicated Column

Aging Matters is a weekly column tackling everyday challenges that our growing elderly population and their loved ones face. It is also published in a variety of syndication partners including newspapers all over the country.

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