Inexpensive Family Activities for Memorial Day

Posted by Sha'Kreshia Terrell in BudgetingMay 23, 2022(Last Updated July 29, 2022)4 min read
Key Takeaways
  • Millions of Americans are set to travel this year for Memorial Day weekend.
  • Gas prices are set to increase during the holiday weekend, with the current price being $4.47 per gallon.
  • There are many inexpensive ways to celebrate memorial day weekend while saving money in the bank and bearing pain at the pump.
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The Civil War fought between the years 1861-1865, claimed more lives in the history of the United States than any other conflict the nation has ever been a part of. The Civil War claimed so many lives that it became a requirement for the country to establish its first national cemeteries dedicated to the soldiers who lost their lives. 


Americans soon began celebrating and paying tribute to our fallen soldiers all over the globe every year thereafter the war. They would plant flowers at gravesites and hold moments of silence for the fallen soldiers. In the coming years, Americans put their own spin on celebrating the national holiday which is also a day of remembrance.


Due to Memorial Day being a federal holiday, many workers get time off during this day. This allows families to spend time with loved ones and travel during the Memorial day weekend.


More Americans plan to travel for Memorial Day this year than years prior. In fact, 60% of Americans plan to travel for the upcoming holiday. The aftermath of the recent pandemic has left many wanting to live life to the fullest.


According to AAA, average gas prices are currently sitting at $4.47 per gallon. With gas prices set to increase during Memorial Day weekend, Americans are stuck wondering how to celebrate the day with family while also bearing the pain at the pump. 


Here are seven inexpensive ways to celebrate the upcoming holiday: 

  • Go Camping (Indoor and Outdoor)
  • Family Game Night
  • Family BBQ
  • Family Beach Day
  • Celebration At The Park
  • Visit Local Veterans
  • See A Veteran, Stop A Veteran


Go Camping (Indoor and Outdoor)


Indoor camping can be just as fun as outdoor camping. Spend time making smores with the family to enjoy around your imaginary campfire. For younger children, place stuffed animals around the house and let them explore finding each outdoor creature. Let their wild imagination roam while you play along.



For some outdoor fun, set up a tent in the front yard and enjoy a night outdoors. Build an outdoor fire, make smores, and enjoy the sounds of the many animals and creatures that surround you.


From the front yard to the living room, the idea of camping is a rather inexpensive family outing. It is a memory of a lifetime and an experience that your children will never forget.


Recommended Read: Cost of Plane Tickets Becoming More Expensive


Family Game Night


Host a family game night and provide a variety of games and snacks. Make it even more enjoyable by providing prizes for the winners. Playing games together helps to connect and build stronger relationships with one another. It opens up the door to making family members feel more at ease of having difficult conversations that may arise.


Remember that family game night is not about being perfect but rather about making memories to last a lifetime. Celebrating holidays doesn’t have to be expensive, plus you can’t put a price on time spent with loved ones.


Recommended Read: Money Conversations as a Couple | Culture Meets Money with Julien & Kiersten Saunders


Family BBQ


From chicken to steak to grilled veggies, spending time in your backyard for a family bbq is a great way to save money while enjoying family time. When preparing side dishes, elect each child to hold responsibility in helping prepare aside. Working as a team creates lifelong skills for little ones to use in the outside world.


Family Beach Day


Gather your loved ones and head outside for some fun in the sun. Travel to your local beach, lake, or pond to enjoy the wonderful sounds of nature. It is nothing better than soaking up some sun with your favorite people being around you. This is another inexpensive idea as you can have a picnic at the beach and save money by making your food at home. 


Celebration At The Park 


Visit your local park for a day of celebration. Live music, vendors, kid activities, food, and a firework show will be given by your city. There are many businesses near you celebrating Memorial Day. You can find more information about live events by visiting your local park website.


Recommended Read: How to Plan a Cheap Family Vacation


Visit Local Veterans


Visit your local nursing home or go to the nearest coffee shop to pay respect to a veteran. Thank them for their service and for being selfless when it comes to putting their lives on the line. If you should see a veteran making a purchase and it is within your budget, pay it forward in an effort to show a token of appreciation. Without them, who knows where our country would be.


See A Veteran, Stop A Veteran 


See a veteran, stop a veteran to simply say thank you. No amount of money can bring back the loved ones we have lost. However, a token of appreciation can go very far. Often times our veterans feel forgotten about and may feel like their sacrifices go unnoticed.



Our veterans carry the weight of the world on their shoulders, and though they should be celebrated every day, what better day than Memorial Day to celebrate and simply say thank you for your service.


Money Takeaway


Having a budget should include a holiday category. This helps to decrease the amount of overspending that is done when a holiday arrives. It also brings you peace of mind knowing that you are still on track towards reaching your financial goals. Paying at the pump doesn’t have to be painful as long as you continue to budget and research inexpensive ways to spend quality time with your loved ones.


Rising gas prices don’t have to suck the fun out of life this Memorial Day. Implementing the various ideas above will be sure to save you money. In addition, you should never have to break the bank to celebrate a holiday. After all, you can’t put a price on spending time with family.


How will you be celebrating Memorial Day this year? Please share with us in the comment section below.

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