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Friday deals: Free museums, parks and plays

World's Largest Ice Cream Social will dish up free ice cream. And don't forget Bud's free beer.

By Teresa Mears Sep 24, 2010 11:46AM

This weekend, there is no excuse for not going out and enjoying some free fun.

Depending on the weather, you might choose a free visit to a national park or a free visit to a museum.


Entry to all 392 U.S. national parks is free on Public Lands Day, Saturday, Sept. 25. (Admission to some national parks is always free.) The next free day at national parks that charge admission will be Nov. 11, Veterans Day.


Smithsonian Magazine is sponsoring free admission to hundreds of museums nationwide Sept. 25, its sixth Museum Day. You need a ticket, which you can get via e-mail by providing your information to the Smithsonian. Each ticket admits two people, and there is a limit of one per household.


Coming soon is the 2010 Free Night of Theater, in which thousands of tickets will be given away at theaters nationwide. Performances take place throughout October, but you'll want to claim your ticket before they're all gone.

We aren't leaving you entirely without free food this week.


This year's installment of the World's Largest Ice Cream Social will be 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 30, at participating Cold Stone Creamery locations. Visitors can get a free serving of Kate's Creation: caramel apple ice cream mixed with chocolate shavings, graham cracker pie crust and apple pie filling. The flavor was created by 11-year-old Kate. The event is a fundraiser for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, so donations are encouraged.


Budweiser will be giving out free beer Sept. 29 as part of its Budweiser National Happy Hour. Check the ads of local establishments that cater to young people, the target of Bud's marketing. You may find free beer some other days, too, as part of the marketing push.


Some of last week's deals and coupons are still good.


Here are the latest food deals and freebies:

  • October is National Cookie Month (I plan to celebrate). Great American Cookies is giving away original chocolate chip cookies, one per customer, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 1. If you can't make it that day, you can still get a free cookie any day in October if you donate a new or used book to the Reading is Sweet book drive. One free cookie per customer, per day.
  • CiCi's Pizza is celebrating its 25th anniversary by offering its all-you-can-eat buffet for $3.99 through Oct. 3.
  • You can buy one drink and get one free Sept 25-26 at Caribou Coffee with this Facebook coupon.
  • Regal Cinemas' weekly Facebook coupon is for a free soft drink with popcorn purchase, good Sept. 24-26.
  • You can use this coupon to get $1 off a grilled pastrami sandwich at Jack in the Box through Nov. 8. Check the fine print because it's not valid in some cities.
  • This coupon is good for a free single serving of Kobari beef at Panda Express Sept. 29. One coupon per person.

And, in deals you can't eat, L'Occitane stores are offering a free mini-facial through Sept. 26. You need to book an appointment in advance.


Remember that not all local establishments participate in all national deals, so it's always wise to call ahead.


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