Are you looking for unique ways to celebrate Memorial Day on a budget? Look no further.
In this article, I’ll share some simple ways you can enjoy this holiday on a budget.
Memorial Day is typically a 3 day weekend. With all the festivities that are involved in this holiday, it’s easy to overspend when planning for it.
Before I continue, I just want to remind you that Memorial Day isn’t just about enjoying a long weekend with a backyard barbecue. It’s also a day when we remember our fallen soldiers who fought to protect our country.
Now let’s take a look at some ways we can save money this Memorial Day.
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Budget-Friendly Memorial Day Ideas
1. Attend a Memorial Day parade
One cheap way to celebrate Memorial Day on a budget is to attend a parade.
Your city may have a Memorial Day parade in your area. It’s usually free to attend most parades. Even if it’s a paid event, it won’t be something that breaks the bank.
A parade is a fun event for everyone in the family.
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2. Bring flowers to the grave of a fallen soldier
You may have a national cemetery where you live. If that’s the case, gather up the family and go for a visit.
While you’re there, place flowers on the graves of a few soldiers. This is a great time to have a discussion about the different branches of the military with your kids.
You can also talk about the roles of the soldiers were whom you delivered flowers. Were the soldiers part of the infantry? Talk about what that means.
Kids will learn a lot from this discussion and gain a new appreciation for our military.
Don’t have a national cemetery in your area?
Do a little digging about your neighbors who fought and died in a war. Deliver flowers to their family members.
I’m sure they’ll appreciate it.
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3. Visit a monument dedicated to war veterans
Where I live there are several monuments dedicated to war veterans. I’m sure you will find a few around your area too if you go looking.
Visiting these monuments is a great budget-friendly Memorial Day activity for the whole family.
During your visit, make sure you have a meaningful conversation with your kids about the symbolism behind each monument.
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4. Visit a war memorial park
If you don’t have any monuments in your area, you can visit a war memorial park near you.
Where I live there are multiple war memorial parks. Some are dedicated to Vietnam vets, vets of the Korean War, Vets of WW2, etc.
While you’re at the park, you can have a picnic with the family, play some sports and enjoy the sun. As always, don’t forget to have a little discussion about the war memorial.
Visiting a park is a great way to celebrate Memorial Day on a budget.
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5. Go to the beach
Most beaches are free or inexpensive to visit. It’s a place the whole family can go for the day.
Bring a ball and play in the sand. You can even barbecue if your beach allows it.
The beach is a great place to enjoy Memorial Day on a budget.
6. Have a picnic
A picnic is a cheap and simple way to celebrate Memorial Day. You can Bring easy meals like sandwiches and snacks to enjoy at your local park.
Memorial Day doesn’t need to be complicated.
7. Attend A free show at a local performing arts center
If you’re a fan of the performing arts, then find a free or low-cost show to attend on Memorial Day.
Most colleges/universities have a performing arts center and they often put on shows for a low price.
It’s a great budget-friendly Memorial Day activity for the whole family. If you’re lucky you may find shows such as ballet, Jazz music, and even chamber music for free.
8. Visit the tomb of the unknown soldier at Arlington National Cemetery
Although I’ve never been to Arlington Virginia, I’ve always wanted to go see the Tomb of The Unknown Soldier and the Changing of The Guard Ceremony.
This could be something you do with your family every Memorial Day if you live in or close to Arlington Virginia.
I’ve seen so many videos of the event on YouTube. It’s so inspirational and a great way to honor our fallen heroes.
If you can’t afford to go, take a page from my book and watch some of the YouTube videos. Then have a discussion about what you saw with the kids.
This is free to do, which makes it a cheap Memorial Day idea.
9. Have a backyard barbecue
If you’re not one for planning long weekends, then a simple barbecue will do.
I love having backyard barbecues with my family. It’s one thing I look forward to each holiday.
Everyone gets in the fun. The kids learn to cook on the grill, the adults drink around the fire or dance to music.
Nothing says budget-friendly Memorial Day like a barbecue.
10. Visit with family and friends
Another simple Memorial Day activity is visiting with family.
It’s always good to get a change of scenery every now and then. You don’t need to do anything special to visit family besides getting in your car and driving.
Those whom you visit will feel special for having the company and you will feel refreshed after a lovely 3-day weekend.
11. Take advantage of Memorial Day sales
I’m sure by now, you’re being bombarded by ads about Memorial Day sales.
If there’s something you’ve wanted to buy, this is the weekend to get it. Treat yourself to a day of shopping either alone or with the whole family.
Spend the day at the mall. There’s always something to do there for entertainment.
12. Write a thank you letter to a soldier
This is one of my favorite budget Memorial Day activities.
Soldiers who are currently deployed long for a connection to the people at home. You can give them hope and let them know of your support by writing them a letter.
Knowing that their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed would mean so much to them.
A quick google search of “website to write a letter to a soldier” will bring up many results. Here’s a website that I’ve used before where you can send a letter to a soldier
13. Watch a war movie
If you love movies about the military then Memorial Day is a great day to watch one.
Watching movies is a cheap Memorial Day activity. You can do it right in your living room with the whole family. No need to go to the theater.
Some of my favorite war movies are We Were Soldiers, Pearl Harbor, and Full Metal Jacket.
14. Send a care package to a soldier
Following along the lines of my patriotic Memorial Day ideas, you can send a care package to a soldier.
I’ve done this many times over the years.
In college, I had a soldier pen pal whom I was connected with on a soldier pen pal site. I used to send him themed care packages using the USPS flat-rate boxes.
I remember how excited my soldier pen pal got when he received the packages. He always wrote me back saying how he looked forward to these tastes of home.
This Memorial Day activity can be budget friendly if you get items cheap from the dollar store.
15. Play a sports game
Here’s my final way to celebrate Memorial Day on a budget. Play some sports.
Get the whole family together and go outside to play. Any sports game will do as long as it gets everyone up and moving.
Final Thoughts On Celebrating Memorial Day On A Budget
Memorial Day is such a special day our federal government gives us to honor those veterans who have died.
Let’s use this day to connect with our family, have some fun, and honor our soldiers.
You can celebrate this Memorial Day on a budget by following all the ideas I’ve listed in this blog post.
Comment below to let me know which idea you’ll use.