It’s January. The holidays are over and there’s a general air of restrained spending, resolution-inspired fitness, and more kale than chocolate. We’re on our best behaviour, but we all still need to have a little fun. And the less we have to spend to find it, the better.
Here are five January events and activities that are free!
5 Free Things to Do This January
1) Ice Skating at Robson Square Ice Rink, through February 28
Location-wise, it doesn’t get much better. The Robson Square Ice Rink is in the heart of downtown Vancouver – ideal for visiting a temporary food cart pod or the Vancouver Art Gallery before taking a few slick laps with friends and family. Bring your own skates and it’s free to use. Or pay a mere $4 to rent.
2) Street Food City II, January 23-27
Before or after free ice skating at Robson Square, head over to the North Plaza of the Vancouver Art Gallery to visit a temporary, Portland-style food cart pod – one of the top events of Dine Out Vancouver Festival 2013. Entry is free! Yes, there will be heated, tented seating and live music. Of course you will have to compensate the clever chef-entrepreneurs for their goods – think wood-fired personal pizzas, Japanese-fusion pulled pork sandwiches, perogies, fish tacos, grilled cheese and more.
3) Vanier Park Winter Wander, January 26
Urban history, outer space, pirate lore and live music in one go! Plan ahead and bring the family to this Kitsilano-based collaboration between the Museum of Vancouver, H.R. MacMillan Space Centre, the Maritime Museum, the Vancouver Archives, and Vancouver Academy of Music. Adults pay $5 to visit all the super cool attractions. But kids 16 & under are free. It’s usually $8 to $12 per attraction. The promo runs 10am to 5pm.
4) Snowshoeing, ongoing
Snowshoeing is a glorious, rigorous winter workout. If you have your own gear, there are plenty of free B.C. Parks trails to try with stunning scenery. Read more about your options here. If you need to rent snowshoes, this can be done at minimal cost at our nearby resorts Grouse, Seymour and Cypress. MEC also offers deals on snowshoe rentals, where the rental fee may be refunded from the purchase of the same equipment.
5) Winter Farmers Market, every Saturday through April 27
In January, kale replaces Christmas cookies. But that doesn’t mean cooking has to be boring. Make an event out of grocery shopping by heading over to the East Parking Lot of Nat Bailey Stadium (30th & Ontario Street)10am – 2pm every Saturday for inspiration at the Winter Farmers Market. You’ll find good stuff – the best local produce and artisan treats. Entry is free. Grocery purchases are on you.
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