Go to the library. It's generally free with books, movies, and special programs for the kids (and, in some places, lectures and such for adults).
A great value this summer as family entertainment budgets shrink:
Library cards don’t cost $4 a gallon.
Southwest Floridians struggling to make ends meet are driving to area libraries. They’re filling their intellectual tanks and keeping their children entertained on the cheap.
As Tara Andalman, 38, stepped out of her mini-van on Monday afternoon outside the branch library in Bonita Springs, cars were doing circles around her.
More than a dozen library patrons were coming or going every 15 minutes as Andalman unloaded four children, all in elementary school. Two of the kids were hers, the others friends. Clearly, it was time for distractions.
After cutting movie rentals from the family budget earlier this year, Andalman said she has had no problem finding free alternatives.