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Winter & Valentine’s Fun on a Budget

Feb 02, 2024



Affordable Winter Fun

There are many ways to get outside throughout the rest of the winter without spending much money! lists upcoming events, and things to do in the greater Portland area. Using their event calendar, you can filter events to fit your interests, and find things to do that you will enjoy. Another resource that lists upcoming events is If you are looking to join a sports league,  reach out to your local Parks and Recreation department. Parks & Rec departments are also a great source for fun family friendly winter events. Also, Pineland Farms in New Gloucester has a variety of family friendly activities, such as snowshoeing, farmyard story time, skating and  more!


L.L.Bean has also compiled a list of free and discounted lift tickets as well as other winter activities including snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and skating. Learn more.


Also, from February 9-11th, Biddeford is hosting a cabin-fever busting weekend called WinterFest! It starts with an adults-only sledding party followed by a pub crawl with local restaurants highlighting food and drink specials. Saturday is filled with family-friendly free activities including pony rides, crafts, Touch a Truck, yummy snacks, and different performances and giveaways! Check out their website for more information and a full list of events. 


Cozy Low-Cost Activities 

If the cold outdoors isn’t for you, and you have run out of episodes to watch of your favorite show, try out some of these indoor activities that you can do right at home!


During a warm summer night, you may not want to turn your oven on. But the cold winter is the perfect time to try out a new dish or bake a new treat! Go outside your comfort zone and find a recipe of something you have never made before. There are plenty of free recipes online. They will provide shopping lists and instructions. Find a few that you think you would enjoy and try them out; you may find a new favorite!


Another option for staying warm and saving money during the winter months is hosting a game night. A game night is a great way to spend time with friends and family, have fun, and break up the day-to-day routine.  Winter is a great time to get a game night going, so gather the family, invite some friends, and have everyone bring their favorite table game. Feel like getting out of the house? Many community centers or game stores have game nights you can join for free or a small fee!


If you need to get out of the house, head to the Portland Museum of Art! They offer several free days throughout the month to enjoy their amazing collection! Free Fridays require no ticket and run from 4-8pm. They also offer Access for All on the third Thursday of the month (the next one is Feb 15th). The museum is free throughout the entire day and into the night (10am-8pm) which includes a party with musicians, food trucks, and artists.  


Fun & Inexpensive Valentine’s Day Activities 

There are many ways you can celebrate Valentine’s Day with your special someone, friends, and/or family on a budget!


Cooking together can be a fun and affordable way to spend the holiday. Restaurants are very expensive and on a holiday it can be hard to get reservations and childcare. Whip up one of your favorite dinners, light some candles, and pick a movie from a streaming service you already subscribe to! You can also make this a group activity with family and/or friends.


Another idea is doing a thrift store challenge with your SO or friend! Head to your local thrift store and spend time together picking out a gift ($10 or under) for each other. You’ll learn about each other and each end up with a unique, personal gift that will not break the bank.


The free museum dates at PMA can also be a fun (and affordable!) way to spend time with the people you love in your life around Valentine’s Day.


There’s a good chance many parts of Maine will still have snow on February 14th, so head outside for a snowball fight, snowman building, or sledding. If you want to spend the holiday outside, check out the winter activities mentioned above; skating or snowshoeing could also be a fun way to spend Valentine’s! Maine also has many beautiful beaches that are just as picturesque during the winter months. Enjoy a stroll on the sand while getting outside with your loved ones!