Hello again, savvy savers! Today starts my three-month fall savings series here on The Lady Prefers2Save! I am truly excited to be starting a new blog series, and hope that you all will follow along! Each day I will feature money-saving suggestions, tips, recipes, projects, or yard decorating ideas with budget-savvy families in mind! Also, each Monday the Fall Savings Series will follow along with the Merry Monday Linky Party Fall Series, which for the month of October will be a Share-Fest for cookies and desserts; you can check out my post this week for sugar-free, all-natural Spooktacular Boo-Berry Muffins, here!
So, for the first post in this series, I want to discuss ways to entertain your family on a budget this Fall. For many of you, like myself, Fall memories center around not only smells, sights, and sounds, but activities! I fondly remember planned Autumn trips being some of the most splendid of my childhood, including our annual trips to see sights along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Roanoke, Virginia. But why let the memories of year’s past fade? Why not continue these traditions yourself.
So many communities offer free, weekend activities for families and children this time of year. Several suggestions for places to find these activities are:
- National Parks
- City/Town Chamber of Commerce Online Directories
- Thursday Neighbors Section of your local newspaper
- Online Facebook Community Pages
- Church Bulletin Boards
- PTA Newsletters
- Oktoberfest celebrations
- Fall Carnivals or Fairs
- Local Library Story Telling Events
- Local Book Fairs
- Free Pumpkin Patch Events and Hay Rides
Also consider national October inspired events such as Susan G. Koman Breast Cancer Walks, 5k’s, as well. I walk in my local Relay-For-Life for Breast Cancer awareness yearly, and it’s always great to see the community out and about this time of year as well!
Finally, if Halloween is one of your favorite holidays, as it is mine, seek out holiday-themed events, often free to the public! This past weekend my husband and I went to one such local event right here in my new married hometown of Meridian, Ms at the Rose Hill Cemetery Tour! The reason we attended the tour, firstly that both my husband and I were History minors in college, and as history buffs, this sort of activity is right up our alley. Secondly, several of my husband friends and educator colleagues are annual performers at this event!
Rose Hill Cemetery, is a member of the National Historic Registry, and is also one of the new in-tact, preserved Victorian themed Cemeteries in America; this is dating back to a time that predated public parks, and so families would erect family plots, affixed with benches and greens for which pick-nicks and gathering could take place, to include deceased loved ones. Though original dates for plots have not been dates, as so many were marked with wooden crosses that have disintegrated over time, the oldest marker that has been found is dated in 1853.
The cemetery was originally privately owned, housing city notables such as the first dozen city mayors, rail-yard executives, the War of Northern Aggression Veterans, as well the King and Queen of the North American Gypsies, but was later acquired by the local Masons and Odd Fellows Society; the purpose of the Masons is to assist widows and orphans and the purpose of the Odd Fellows is to bury the dead. Currently, both societies have disbanded, and the property is owned and preserved by the local benevolence league, and they host these annual tours, free to the public. The tour hosts 1,000-2,000 visitors each year.
One of the neatest aspects of these tours is that they are only two performed per year, one morning and one evening tour schedule annually, and many notable graves are accompanied by many of the local whos-who of the city, who perform period-clad, reenactment performances on the various stops along the tour. This year, a pair of reenactors, portraying the first mayor of Meridian to execute the expansion of the rail-yards, create the layout of the downtown area, and to bring various businesses to the city, many of which are still operational, and his spouse, ironically by none other than former Meridian Mayor Cheri Barry, and her husband Mr. Barry, a local business owner; Mrs. Barry was the first female elected to the position, and it was a pleasure to have a few moments to speak to such a phenomenal city leader!
There are so many fascinating graves, but for me, my favorites were the King and Queen of the Romany Gypsies; these graves are frequently visited and tokens are left for their majesties accordingly.
Other actors, such as Mr. Farmer, a former colleague, and friend of my husband, reenacted a famous baseball player to this area who rests here. Also, several ladies portraying the children’s suffrage group, which later became the local children’s aid society and orphanage still in existence in this city, were present, and their happy, clever explanation of why one ladies husband’s marker was inscribed with “his lady friends,” was nothing more than a kind group of ladies who buried the good town doctor, who succumbed to yellow fever, after having saved dozen s of patients himself.
This tour, like too many other others in this area, is an example of awesome family-friendly, frugal, fun that can be had this season! Be sure to keep a lookout for such events in your neck of the woods!