Patti

Patti Roth, a veteran Broward freelance writer, is the editor of Fort Lauderdale on the Cheap. Patti, who has lived in Florida since her teenage years, was previously a staffer at the Sun-Sentinel for about 14 years. As a freelancer, she’s written for many publications, including The Miami Herald, Florida Travel and Life, New Times, E Environmental Magazine, Dog Fancy, Cat Fancy, US Architecture and Earth911.com.

Dec 192014
 
Santa

Whether you’re naughty or nice, Santa is usually happy to see you. These are events in Broward where you might be able to mingle with him.

  • December 19 — Santa on the Beach 12:45 p.m., 1100 Seabreeze Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, 954-828-5363
  • December 19 — Winter Festival, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. in Margate, Margate Boulevard and U.S. 441, snow tubing slide, entertainment and Santa posing for pictures, 954-972-6458
  • December 20 — Winter Wonderland event with Santa  at Plantation Historical Museum,  10 a.m to noon and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., includes holiday displays, 511 N. Fig Tree Lane, 954-797-2722
  • December 20 — Family Fun Westside Park, 445 SW Second St., Deerfield Beach, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. includes entertainment, activities and vendors, 954-571-4568 or 954-480-4481
  • Free photo with Santa and holiday games and activities for kids at Bass Pro Shops in Dania Beach every day to December 24, specific hours outlined on website

 

Read about other free holiday activities and events in our post Holiday events and  light displays in Broward — most are free

Dec 192014
 
broward-beach_thumb.jpg

If you’d like a break from shopping and wrapping gifts, free entertainment and free holiday activities are among the  budget-friendly things to do this weekend in Broward.

Savor free music, a free movie in the park or an activity with Santa.

To keep up with latest news on deals, discounts and free events in South Florida, sign up for the daily Fort Lauderdale on the Cheap newsletter. You can also follow us on Facebook and on Twitter.

Here are our top picks for free and cheap weekend fun on the cheap:

Free events

 

Entertainment and activity deals

 

Also in South Florida

Dec 182014
 
winter wonderettes

Tickets for dinner theater show featuring “Winter Wonderettes” in north Broward are offered at discount prices.

The discounts are for select shows weekends in December.

Information about the deals is on the links

The show is at Coral Springs Center for the Arts.

Read about other deals for activities and events in South Florida on the Entertainment Page and the Daily Deals headquarters.

 

Dec 182014
 
dining-out

For those who appreciate discounts for dining out, Groupon offers deals at various restaurants in South Florida, including Fort Lauderdale,  Hollywood and Pompano Beach. The variety of deals includes international fare, brunch and treats. Some of the deals are about 50% off, or more. Some of the deals include restrictions, such as when the voucher may be redeemed. To pique your interest, some of the deals are featured on these links:

More restaurant deals in South Florida are featured on the link, Groupon restaurant deals

Dec 182014
 
Gulfstream Symphony of Lights

Happy Holidays. For savoring the season, South Florida offers fairs, festivals and dazzling holiday displays.  Many are free.

Free events, specific dates

  • December 19 — Winter Festival, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. in Margate, Margate Boulevard and U.S. 441, snow tubing slide, entertainment and Santa posing for pictures, 954-972-6458
  • December 19 — “The Santa Clause” free movies at ArtsPark in Hollywood 8 p.m.
  • December 20 — Family Fun Westside Park, 445 SW Second St., Deerfield Beach, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. includes entertainment, activities and vendors, 954-571-4568 or 954-480-4481
  • December 20 — Winter Wonderland event with Santa  at Plantation Historical Museum, 10 a.m to noon and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., includes holiday displays, 511 N. Fig Tree Lane, 954-797-2722

Free events, various dates

Free holiday events at libraries in Broward, various venues in December

 

Entry fee

See all the Broward holiday events and deals.

Find free and cheap holiday events in Miami-Dade.

Dec 172014
 
trains

For a fun, unique and relatively inexpensive family activity in Broward, hop aboard a petite train.

A functioning model steam train runs at Tradewinds Park for kids and adults typically the third weekend of the month. Tickets are $1.50 for train rides, and the weekend entry fee to the park for anyone 6 and older is an additional $1.50.

The train, provided by Tradewinds Park and the Tradewinds & Atlantic Railroad Club, runs 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the third Saturday and Sunday of each month. You can see the schedule of train rides here.

Parents must accompany kids 10 and younger, and pregnant women are not allowed to ride.

Tradewinds Park North is at  3600 W. Sample Road, Coconut Creek. For information, phone the park at 954-357-8870

Dec 172014
 
toilet

Lots of folks are scurrying around doing holiday shopping. If you happen to be shopping for a replacement toilet,  you’ll probably be interested in this opportunity for a rebate.

The Broward Water Partnership offers eligible Broward residents in participating municipalities rebates of up to $100 when replacing an old toilet with a more efficient WaterSense-rated toilet.

Participating municipalities include Hollywood, Fort Lauderdale, Margate and about 15 others.

Information about eligibility and applying for a rebate — which needs to be done and pre-approved before purchasing the product — is on the website, 800-270-9794

 

Dec 172014
 
lights_thumb.jpg

Some holiday light displays in Broward are dazzling family-friendly entertainment.

These are popular displays.

  • Free Symphony of Lights display at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, lights synchronized with music
  • Residential holiday display. Hyatt Extreme Christmas display, 11201 NW 14th St., Plantation, donations accepted  for Humane Society of Broward and food bank items, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays to Thursday s and 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays to  December 29
  •  Holiday lights and light show at Flamingo Gardens in Davie, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. December 20, December 21, December 27 and December 28; $5 or included with regular daytime entry fee
  • Holiday Fantasy of Lights at Tradewinds Park in Coconut Creek, 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. to January 1, $14 per vehicle, or $10 per vehicle on select discount nights December 16, December 29 and December 30. Discount coupons may be featured on the website.

Read about other holiday events in Broward — most are free.

Dec 172014
 
stitchmas

Handmade items from independent artists and artisans are the highlight of holiday event in Fort Lauderdale.

The Very Merry Stitchmas holiday market includes entertainment, vendors, vintage and original pieces, vegan fare  and DIY projects.  The entry fee is $5 and the first 100 people receive free swag bags.

The event is noon to 6 p.m. December 20 at Revolution Live, 100 SW Third Avenue, Fort Lauderdale.  Free parking with free trolley is offered at a parking lot behind Sears at Northeast Fifth Avenue and Northeast Ninth Street.

Information about the event is on the website.

 

Dec 152014
 
flamingo water park

By Patti Roth

For vacations in Florida, Groupon Getaways , Living Social Escapes and Travelzoo offer discounts and vacation packages.

Some of the deals are 40 percent to 50 percent off, or more.

These are some of the freshest deals, with links for information and purchases.

Browse more travel deals in Florida and around the world on these links

Dec 152014
 
g-skating_thumb.jpg

Groupon offers discounts for ice skating, trampoline fun and amusement arcades in Pompano Beach, Sunrise and other towns in Broward.

Information about the deals is featured on the links.

Dec 122014
 
lion king

For “Lion King” fans, Travelzoo is featuring discount prices for select performances of the show in Fort Lauderdale.

Information about the purchasing the discount tickets is on the link, $34.25 to $38.50 for balcony seating. The regular prices are $44.25 to $49.75.  The lower ticket prices are for some of the weeknight shows.

The discounts are offered for these shows at Broward Center. Book by December 22.

  • January 7  8 p.m.
  • January 8 at 8 p.m.
  • January 9 at 8 p.m.
  • January  11 at 6:30 p.m.
  • January 13 at 8 p.m.
  • January 14 at 8 p.m.
  • January  15 at 8 p.m.
  • January  16 at 8 p.m.
  • January 18 at 6:30 p.m.

 

More deals for activities and events in South Florida are featured on the Entertainment Page and the Daily Deals headquarters.