Fun & Frugal Family Events 10/7 – 10/13

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Here is this week’s list of family-friendly free or frugal events for around the Northwest, as well as some events going on around the country. Thanks to Sia from Centsible in Seattle for providing this extensive list of activities for us.

Make sure to check out our huge roundup of Fall festivals in the Northwest as well to see if there’s a fun event going on around you this weekend. Sounds Fun Mom always has a great list of events  local to the South Sound area of WA as well, so make sure to check out her extensive list.

There are also a number of Fall Consignment sales going on this weekend so make sure to check those out.

If you see a fun, frugal event that’s not listed, feel free to leave a comment so we can add that event to our list.


Friday October 7th:

*Free Entrance To Hands On Childrens Museum  Olympia; 10/7; 5:00pm to 9:00pm; Free entrance for the evening on the first Friday of each month.

*Free Childrens Museum Of Tacoma Entrance – Tacoma; 10/7; 10:00am to 7:00pm; First Friday of the month The Children’s Museum of Tacoma offers free admission.

* Free Admission To KidsQuest Children’s Musuem – Factoria; 10/7; 5:00pm to 8:00pm; First Friday evening of the month offers free admission.

*Free Entrance To Bellevue Art Museum – Bellevue; 10/7; 11:00am to 8:00pm. First Friday of the month Bellevue Art Museum offers free admission.

Oktoberfest – Puyallup; 10/7- 10/9; 11:00am to Midnight (Fri & Sat), 11:00am to 6:00pm (Sun); Authentic German entertainment, food and crafts, beer garden, wiener dog races, kids’ activities (with rootbeer garden) and more.  Family friendly event until 7pm (family friendly all day Sunday with special family activities). $10, free ages 12 and younger, free 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 7, half-price Oct. 9. You can get $3 off coupons at Safeway. Free parking available.

*FreeTête-à-têter At Frye Museum – Seattle; 10/7; 11:15 to 11:45 a.m (museum hours 11:00am to 5:00pm); Children’s stories are brought to life with movement and play in the Frye Art Museum galleries by Frye educators or librarians from The Seattle Public Library. Visit the galleries after story time. Ages 3 to 5 with adult. Both museum entrance and story time are free.

* Everett Sausage Festival – Everett; 10/7 – 10/9; Noon to midnight (Fri & Sat), noon to 7:00pm (Sun). Free entrance to event. Traditional Bavarian dinner, arts and crafts, food booths, carnival rides, kids’ activities, entertainment and more.

* Fall Artwalk – Olympia; 10/7 – 10/8;   5:00pm to 10:00pm (Fri), 11:00am to 5:00pm (Sat). Free event with visual and performing arts in over 100 businesses, hands-on family activities, demonstrations and impromptu street performances.

*Free Entrance to Seattle Symphony’s “Soundbridge”– Seattle, Beneroya Hall; 10/7; 9 at 10:00 am; Soundbridge is a music discovery center and is free each Friday after 12 pm; Ages 2-5, 30 minute interactive storytelling with song & rhythm, dance & musical instruments.

Saturday October 8th:

Cider Squeeze at the Meeker Mansion– Puyallup; 10/8; 10:00am to 4:00pm; The annual squeezing of apples is here. Get a pumpkin and some fresh squeezed cider. Fun for the whole family.  Come to the Squeeze and meet Miss Washington, Brittney Henry! Adults ($4) Students and Seniors ($3) Children ($2). Thanks Sounds Fun Mom!

*Great Seattle Fire Day – Seattle; 10/8; 10:00am to 1:00pm;   Free event at the Museum of History and Industry Museum.  They have partnered with the Seattle fire department to host this event. Learn what the Great Seattle Fire of 1899 can teach us about modern fire safety. Family-friendly activitie include demonstrations with Henny the Arson Dog and Captain Baer, antique fire engines from Last Resort, a ladder truck, family fire safety activities with local firefighters, hands-on-history games and crafts, give-aways and more.

* Family Days Harvest Celebration – Issaquah; 10/8; 10:00am to 12:00pm; Free family days where the whole family is can discover the joy of gardening, indulge in garden snacks and let loose in our organic learning garden. Families can use all of their senses to explore the garden, seek out garden critters and plant a vegetable or flower to take home.

* Donkey Creek Chum Festival – Gig Harbor; 10/8; 10:00am to 5:00pm; Celebrate the annual return of salmon to Donkey Creek with vendor booths including “chum burgers,” kayak races, kids’ games and projects and more.

* Fall Free For All – Tacoma; 10/8 – 10/9; 10:00am to 11:00pm (Sat), noon to 6:00pm (Sun); Community arts festival offers free events for all ages, including plays, films, a kids’ concert, dance, kids’ activities, magicians and more. Order a FREE wristband pass online.

* Fraser Cabin Heritage Program – Bellevue; 11:00am to 3:00pm; Hands-on activities that relate to 1880s settler life including agriculture, dairy, household tasks, games and more. Free.

* Salmon Seezon Issaquah – Issaquah; 10/8; 11:00am to 1:00pm; Watch wild salmon migrate up Issaquah Creek. Trained guides from Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery will be on hand 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays through Nov. 5.

*Harvest Festival – Bothell; 10/8 – 10/9; 11:00am to 5:00pm; Craft fair, music, pony rides, train rides, pumpkin painting contest and more. Free entrance with nominal fee for some activities. Stroll the grounds decorated with corn stalks, scarecrows and pumpkin while you enjoy live music and dance performances on the stage.  Paint a pumpkin in the Pumpkin Painting room.

*Oxbow Farm and Pumpkin Patch Open To Public– Carnation; 10/8- 10/9; 10:00am to 3:00pm; Huge U-pick pumpkin patch, magical Living Playground with the Caterpillar Tunnel, Creepy Tepee, sorghum spiral, climbing tractor, fun projects always happening at Oxbow’s Kid’s Farm. Free entrance.

*Gig Harbor Scarecrow Festival – Gig Harbor; 10/8; 11:00am to 5:00pm; Festival events include: Scarecrow Contest & Displays, KidsZone/Carnival Games, Hay Rides/Pony Rides/Farm Animals, Food & Fair Treats, Live Music/Entertainment and more.

*Bellevue Art Museums Get Crafty Saturday – Bellevue; 10/8; 1:00pm to 3:00pm; Free craft time for kids each Saturday. $2 material fee or free with admission.

*Browns Point Lighthouse Cottage Museum & Tours – Browns Point; Each Saturday through November; 1:00pm to 4:00pm;  You get to see the keeper’s quarters, the bell, and the museum, and it’s free and very kid friendly (they can touch everything).  Thanks Sounds Fun Mom!

* Science & Technology Center (MaST) – Saturdays 10am – 2pm; kids can explore sea life with touch tanks & more. Thanks Sounds Fun Mom!

Wednesday October 12th:

* Family Days Harvest Celebration – Issaquah; 10/12; 3:30pm to 5:00pm; Free family days where the whole family is can discover the joy of gardening, indulge in garden snacks and let loose in our organic learning garden. Families can use all of their senses to explore the garden, seek out garden critters and plant a vegetable or flower to take home.

Thursday October 13th:

*Free Admission To NAAM – Seattle; 10/13; 11:00am to 7:00pm; The Northwest African American Museum is free on the second Thursday of each month.

*Half Priced Admission Imagine Childrens Museum – Everett; 10/13; Thursday 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. is half priced ( $3.88)


Here’s our list of weekly events for the Portland area. For more Portland happenings, check out the PDX Kids Calendar, a comprehensive events-based website for families in the Portland area.

Friday October 7th:

*Free Admission To The Children’s Museum Portland; 10/7; 4:00pm to 8:00pm; The first Friday of the month you Target sponsors free admission to the Childrens Museum. This month you can make a book.

Penny the Puppeteer – Portland; 10/7; 10:00am; Penny the Puppeteer is performing one of her new shows this Friday at the Off Broadway Central Lutheran Church at 10 – Basil the Bookworm and her Trip around the World.  $5 each or 4 for $17.  Thanks PDX Kids Calendar!

*Lady Bug Nature Walk – Portland; 10/7; 10:00am; Walk through parks, gardens and natural areas. Touch slimy slugs, smell tree bark, feel crinkly and soft leaves, hear musical bird songs etc. Cost is $3 per toddler, adults are free!

*Creative Play At Isobels ClubhousePortland;  10/7; 9:30am to 11:30am; As part of creative play, kids can dress up in costumes, play with toys, read stories, play games or create in the art space.

*Sing a Long With Tyleena – Portland; 10/7 & 10/8; 10am; Join us for a musical sing a-long and story time with the fantastic Tyleena! Sing along to your favorite songs and books. Pick up a tambourine, drum or shaker and jam with us while learning some basic rhythm skills. Fun for the whole family! $3 donation.

Saturday October 8th:

Kiyokawa’s Honeycrisp Harvest & Fiesta Days – Parkdale; 10/8 – 10/9 &  10/15 – 10/16; Indulge in Honeycrisp caramel apples, sample Honeycrisp applesauce and other baked delights made with this superb variety. Come up for the day – have a picnic, tour the orchard, and take a hay wagon ride. The kids will love the play area.

*Wordstock FestivalConvention Center; 10/8 – 10/9; Starts at 9:00am.  Sample kid-friendly activities and events include readings by children’s authors and illustrators, books in the Story Corner, opportunities to write their own stories, and arts & crafts activities like bookmaking.  (Lots of adult-friendly events too.)  Free for kids under 13, $7 adults. Thanks PDX Kids Calendar!

*Free Admission To The History Museum  (For Oregon Day Of Culture) – 10/8; 11:00am to 3:00pm; To celebrate the 2011 Day of Culture, the Oregon Historical Society is opening its doors for free all day on October 8! At 12:30, take a guided behind the scenes tour of the research library, where many of the Society’s photographs, maps, and records are housed. At 2 PM, enjoy a historic improv performance by the popular comedy group Sideburns in the OHS Pavilion.  Learn about the history of rock and roll in the Oregon History Museum’s original exhibit “Oregon Rocks,” and take a tour of the exhibit with the curator at 3 PM.

*Family Day at the Washington County Museum – Portland; 10/8; 10:00am to 2:00pm; Free admission to the museum for family day, make scarecrow marionette masks and enjoy a mobile museum presentation.

Wonderful World of BugsLeach Botanical Gardens; 10/8; 2:00pm to 3:30pm.   Learn more about creepy crawlies from two entomologists, meet some, and go on a bug hunt.  Please register to attend.  $5/person or $20/family. Thanks PDX Kids Calendar!

Free Family Swim At Marshall Community Center – Vancouver; 10/8; 4:45pm to 6:30pm; Bauman Chiropractic is sponsoring free family swims at Marshall Pool Saturday evenings.

*Free Guided Nature Walk –  Portland; 10/8; 10:00am to 11:30am; Join park rangers for a free guided nature hike.

*Lady Bug Nature Walk – Portland; 10/8; 10:00am; Walk through parks, gardens and natural areas. Touch slimy slugs, smell tree bark, feel crinkly and soft leaves, hear musical bird songs etc. Cost is $3 per toddler, adults are free!

* Kids Saturday Morning Skate Session At Oaks Park Portland ;10/8; 10:30am to 12:00pm; For $5.50 children 10 and under can skate (skates included). Parents free with paid child admission.

Monday October 10th:

*Washington County Museum Free Admission – Portland; 10/10; 10:00am to 4:30pm; Admission is free to this museum every Monday.

*Mondays On The Mall – Portland – Downtown Central Transit Mall; 10/10; Various Times; Free events all day including Wii play, caricatures, the original photo booth and entertainment.

Tuesday October 11th:

*$4 Admission To Oregon Zoo – Portland; 10/11; 9am to 6pm; Oregon Zoo offers $4 admission on the second Tuesday of each month.

Wednesday October 12th:

*Honeybee Happenings Portland – Leach Botanical Society; 10/12; 10:00am to 11:00am; Weekly nature-related story time and craft activities for young children (Ages 1-6)and their parents with short outdoor explorations if weather permits. $2 per child. No pre-registration required.

Thursday October 13th:

Kennedy School’s – Portland; 10/13; 6:00pm; Free event. This month’s family frolic features music by Uncle B & Auntie E & J Dog.  Thursday at 6.  Free! Thanks PDX Kids Calendar!



*Halloween Costume SwapVarious locations around the country. 10/8; Bring a costume and get a costume for free. Organized costume swaps provide an affordable and green alternative to new halloween costumes.

*Disneys Roaring Storytime – 10/8; Come dressed as your favorite Lion King character for Disney Store’s mane event featuring The Lion King storytime, sing-along, parade and fun! Saturday, October 8 Session 1 – 10:30 am, Session 2 – 12:00 pm, Session 3 – 1:30 pm, *Minimum age for participation is 3 years. Event limited per session based on store capacity. No lineups prior to 30 minutes before event begins. Event subject to change or cancellation without notice. Call store for more information.

*Lowes Build And Grow Clinic – Saturday 10/8; 10:00am; Come join Lowes Build and Grow Clinic to make a monster machine. Register here.

*Free Craft Activities at Lakeshore Learning Stores– Sat. 10/8; 11am to 3pm; Kids can come to this free craft time and make a “my art portfolio’ project.

*Barnes and Noble Free Storytime Sat. 10/8;  Times and events vary by location. Check your location for specific story’s available this weekend.

* Michaels Make It Take It Event 10/8; 1:00pm to 3:00pm; Make-It Take-It: The Crazy Pumpkin Event with purchase of pumpkin: design an extreme craft pumpkin ( 50% off coupon available through 10/10).

* Michaels Make It Take It Event 10/9; 1:00pm to 3:00pm; FREE Make-It Take-It Paper Bat Event.