By Shannon Hanrahan • September 04, 2015
Summer is unofficially coming to an end this weekend. You probably aren’t ready to say goodbye; who would willingly let go of the simplicity that just seems to come with summertime? I surely don’t. Since we aren’t bears and unfortunately can’t hibernate all winter long, we might as well end it with an epic weekend. Because back to school season is already an expensive time, you might be hesitant to do anything other than mope around the house. Let us help you turn those frowns upside down with some alternative ways for you to spend your Labor Day weekend and stay on a budget.
Camping is a great way to get in touch with yourself and those going with you. If you have a backyard and a tent, set it up. Who cares if the neighbors think you are a little strange…do you even like them anyway? If that doesn’t appeal to you or is just not possible, be creative with what you have inside the house. Take a trip back to your elementary years and build a fort in your living room. You can transform the room with just a few blankets, chairs, and pillows. Make a few snacks and then pretend that you are in the wilderness. Disconnect yourself from technology and the rest of the house, pull out the board boards, and just enjoy each other's company for a night or the whole weekend if you can make it that long.
Try finding a last minute ticket to your local baseball team or even better, check out what college or high school games are going on this weekend. This is a great way to support the local community and enjoy a day of watching sports, without getting sucked into expensive stadium prices. Who knows, you could be watching a future sports superstar and then you could say one day, “I remember when he/she was a nobody and playing in my hometown”. A lot of teams will also be doing fundraising over the weekend, so if there aren’t any games being played, try to support their other events and help them raise the money they need.
Get a bunch of friends or family members together and go to your local park. Spend the day hiking, picnicking, and maybe even playing some sports of your own. You get to enjoy the nice weather and have the freedom to do whatever you want, without having to spend any money aside from what you bring along Maybe this will give you the opportunity to explore a new area in your city or town and take a minute to enjoy the nature around you. If the park has a BBQ area, you could even have one final meal on the grill.
Start prepping for winter and take the long weekend as a reason to go through all of your clothes and donate or trash the ones you are no longer wearing. Start with your summer wardrobe since you already know what you avoided all season long. Unless you really think that you are going to wear it next year, get rid of it; there is a reason you chose to not wear it. Make different piles based on where you can distribute the clothes: a trash pile, hand-me-downs, and donations. Then go through your winter clothes and do the same. This way you already have a head start on spring-cleaning and can make room for new fall clothes you are inevitably going to purchase.
For the last hurrah of the summer, towns and cities across the country are having festivals and parades all weekend long. Here in LA, the city is packed with fun ways to get outside and celebrate the culture around us. Do a quick search for fun activities in your area or check out the newspaper. There is no better way to spice up your weekend than by doing something spontaneous and new. Just pick a few events and show up! There are undoubtedly events the whole family can join in on. You can even have everyone pick one they want to see and spread them out over 3 days.
Before the stress of back to school and the holidays settle in, use Labor Day weekend to spend time with your loved ones and take in everything that summer has to offer. Whether you want to embrace some last minute relaxation or soak up a final few warm rays of the sun, now is the perfect time, you just have to make room for it. We are all sad to see summer go, but by throwing in a few budget friendly Labor Day weekend activities, at least you can say goodbye with a smile and have some great memories to get you through the tundra known as winter.
Shannon Hanrahan Shannon is a LA transplant from Philadelphia and a social media junkie. When she is not Pinteresting or Instagraming away, she enjoys eating dessert first, traveling to new places, and being a self-proclaimed DIY expert (aka HGTV addict).