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

Sep 302014

Entertainment and adorable adoptable dogs are highlights  at Flamingo Gardens free food truck event in south Broward.

The events are 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. most first Fridays of the month, with music by DJ Mikes in the parking lot, and performance by a bluegrass band.

During the First Friday Late Nights at Flamingo Gardens events, the  garden and wildlife attraction stays open until 7:30 with discount $5 entry fees  4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

The event October 3 includes adoptable pooches rescued by the group 100+ Abandoned Dogs of the Everglades.

Flamingo Gardens is at 3750 S. Flamingo Road, Davie, 954-473-2955

Sep 292014

bru kidsVarious restaurants in South Florida offer  family-friendly deals, including free food for kids.

Many free kid’s meal deals require purchase of at least one adult entrée.

With these deals, participation at individual restaurants may vary.

  • Free kid’s meal with adult entree purchase at participating Bru’s Room restaurants in South Florida 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesdays, many restaurants feature  kid-friendly entertainment
  • Duffy’s restaurants in South Florida offer a kids-eat-free deal Wednesdays, with purchase of an adult entrée. Duffy’s restaurants in South Florida include Fort Lauderdale, North Miami Beach, Plantation, Deerfield Beach, Jupiter, Boca Raton, Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, West Palm Beach, North Palm Beach and Coconut Creek.
  • Kids eat free deals are offered at participating Denny’s restaurants, usually 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesdays.
  • Kids eat free Wednesdays at Pizza Loft in Davie, with eligible purchase of an adult meal
  • Some Lime Fresh Mexican  restaurants offer a free kid’s meal with purchase of an adult entrée  5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesdays.  The offer is for kids age 10 and younger. Participating restaurants are 1535 N Federal Highway, Ft. Lauderdale, 754-200-6631, and 4425 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek, 954-586-2999
Sep 292014

hay ride


Hayrides and s’mores are featured at events at  Broward parks.

The fee is $3.50 for guests ages 3 and older, and most of the hayrides are from 7 to 9:30 p.m. The hours are different at TY Park in Hollywood.

The Hayride and Campfire events require guests pre-register and pre-pay.

The events include

Easterlin Park, 1000 NW 38th St., 954-357-5190, October 24 and November 21

 Quiet Waters Park, 401 S. Powerline Road, Deerfield Beach, 954-357-5100, October 10, November 7, December 12

T.Y. Park, 3300 N. Park Road, Hollywood,  954-357-8811, October 31, November 14, December 19, January 16, February 13
Tradewinds Park, 3600 W. Sample Road, 
Coconut Creek, 954-357-8870, January 9, February 6, February 20, March 6



Sep 292014

Various types of gadgets and design equipment are free to useo at Broward Library in Fort Lauderdale.

The equipment includes 3D printer and LEGO robotics.

The venue is Creation Station at Broward Library,  100 S. Andrews Ave., Fort Lauderdale, 954-356-7444

Hours vary, and include 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays, 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays

Sep 282014

Lots of  activities and attractions in Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Deerfield Beach and other towns in Broward are offering  two-for-one discounts.

The 2-for-1 Summer Savings deals, which are valid in September, include Museum of Art-Fort Lauderdale, Museum of Discovery and Science in Fort Lauderdale, Stranahan House and various other participating attractions, water sports activities and  other merchants.

The participating venues and a printable coupon for the 2-for-1  deals are featured on Greater Fort Lauderdale tourism website.


Sep 252014

For free entertainment and free fun, ArtsPark in Hollywood is a lovely outdoor venue that offers varied activities. Food trucks are at the park 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. most Mondays. Entry is free to the event, which includes vendors selling food items. The park features a glassblowing studio, with artisans presenting free demonstrations 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. most Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. For kids, Funtastic Fridays events, which are 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. most Fridays, include a bounce house and other activities. Free music performances by local artists are featured at ArtsPark Live, 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. most Saturdays ArtsPark is on Hollywood Boulevard at Federal Highway, 954-921-3500

Sep 242014

Savor the weekend without emptying your pockets. These are some of our favorite deals and free things to do during the weekend in South Florida, including events in Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood and Pompano Beach. 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

Dining deals

Also in South Florida


Sep 232014
broward 100 event

Entertainment, kids’ activities, art exhibits, graffiti painting  and food trucks are featured at a free Block Party event in Fort Lauderdale.

The party,  5 p.m. to 8 p.m. October 16 on Las Olas Boulevard between Andrews Avenue and Southeast Second Street, is part of Broward’s 100th anniversary festivities.

The organizers are  Broward College, Nova Southeastern University and Florida Atlantic Unviersity.

Sep 232014

pianobarGood idea for a frugal date night, or evening with friends and family.

The Seminole Hard Rock Piano Bar in south Broward is featured in a Travelzoo deal, offering a discount on drinks.

Information about the deal is on the link, four drinks for two guests for $25. The value of the deal is up to $48.

The deal also offers $75 for 12 drinks for six guests, a value of up to $144.

The vouchers are valid Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays 8 p.m. to 1 a.m.


Sep 232014

boat showPurchase tickets to the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show online for discounts of  $2.

The boat show website features  $2 discounts on various types of tickets.

General adult tickets are $22 online and $24 at the event.

The boat show events are October 31 to November 3 at various venues in Fort Lauderdale, including Bahia Mar Yachting Center, Hall of Fame Marina, Las Olas Marina, Fort Lauderdale Hilton Marina and The Sails Marina, 954-764-7642

Sep 222014

For free entertainment, Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach is offering outdoor performances featuring an assortment of bands.

The free music is presented most Saturdays 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.

The Village at Gulfstream Park, an open-air shopping, recreation and dining plaza, is at 501 S. Federal Highway, Hallandale Beach, 378-0900

The featured performers are on the Gulfstream Park website.


Sep 222014

produceShoppers who are picky about produce are treated to an assortment of outdoor and indoor set-ups in Broward. Some farmers markets are occasional events embellished with free music and other activities. Others are more like regular stores that are accessible every day. If you’re venturing out to a specific farmers market, it’s a good idea to phone first because dates, hours and locations sometimes are modified. Here are farmers markets in Broward. Saturdays, Sundays or other specific days

  • Hollywood, Josh’s Organic Garden, 101 N. Ocean Drive, Hollywood, year-round 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Sundays, 954-456-3276
  • Las Olas Sunday Market,  year-round at 333 E. Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale, Sundays 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Plantation Farmers Market, year-round, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m Saturdays, Volunteer Park,  12050 W. Sunrise Blvd., Plantation, 954-452-2558
  • The Yellow Green Farmers Market, year-round 1940 N. 30th Road, Hollywood, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, 954-513-3990

Most days

  • Brothers Farmers Market,year-round at 4191 N State Road 7, Hollywood, 954-962-9250 and 6807 Stirling Road, Davie, 954-585-2225, Davie
  • Flamingo Road Nursery and Farmers Market, year-round at  1655 S. Flamingo Road, Davie, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. . 954-235-9397
  • Marando Farms, 1401 SW First Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, year-round, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends, 954-294-2331
  • Stiles Farmers Market, 5920 W. Oakland Park Blvd., Lauderhill, year-round, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays to Saturdays and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays
  • SW Ranches Farmers Market, 5150 S Flamingo Road, Southwest Ranches, 754-423-3786, Fridays, Saturdays Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays