Teacher Appreciation Day Deals & Freebies

teacher appreciation dayWe owe teachers so much thanks and gratitude for their daily encouragement and interaction teaching our children. Several Houston businesses are recognizing Teacher Appreciation Day with deals or freebies this week.

Chick-fil-A — Houston-area locations are spoiling teachers with a free Chick-fil-A Sandwich May 3, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. No coupon required. No purchase necessary. Valid ID required.

Chipotle — It’s a buy-one, get-one free deal at Chipotle May 3 for teachers, faculty and staff members. From 3 p.m. to close, educators can get a free burrito, bowl, taco or salad with purchase of another. Valid ID required. One per person.

Salata — On May 3, teachers can get half off any salad or wrap at Salata with a valid school ID.

PDQ — Teachers will be celebrated May 3 at PDQ with a free combo meal (3-piece tenders, salad or sandwich). Valid school ID required.

Houston Astros — Educators will be recognized at Houston Astros game May 3, 7:10 p.m., for Teacher Appreciation Night. Teachers will receive an Astros navy tote bag. Ticket packages are available for $25 in mezzanine and $30 in Field Box IV.

SeaWorld — Texas teachers can play at SeaWorld with free unlimited admission through December 31, 2016, thanks to the Teacher Appreciation Fun Card. This is for Pre-K through 12th grade active and certified teachers. New this year: a third-party company (ID.me) will provide online verification of Pre-K – 12th grade Texas school teachers. A Department of Education number is required. Sign up online at SeaWorld.

7 Free Things to Do in Houston May 2-6

There’s never a dull moment in Houston. Here are 7 options for free fun in Houston May 2-6 before planning your free and cheap weekend!

We Love Houston sign

Tuesday (5/3) — Tai Chi is a slow and gentle exercise perfect for all levels– beginner to advanced. Enjoy this free weekly class at Central Green Park in Katy at 9 a.m. This Chinese exercise system uses slow body movements to achieve a state of relaxation. Located at 23501 Cinco Ranch Blvd.

Tuesday (5/3) — Visit Houston Zoo free the first Tuesday afternoon each month beginning at noon. Last admission is 6 p.m. with Zoo closing at 7 p.m. Free tickets are now required to enter for free afternoon day. Get them in advance online or at the gate. The Houston Zoo is located at 6200 Hermann Park Drive. This is a great way to save since adult admission is $17 and kids 2-11 are $13.

Tuesday (5/3) — Toddler Tuesday returns with its weekly craft, story, and activities for toddler fun. This week features characters from Inside Out. The fun is 10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. at Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney.

Wednesday (5/4) — A Little Day Music returns for its free monthly noon concert presented by Da Camera. The music this Wednesday features music from Latin America with Da Camera Young Artists and a special guest. The audience is encouraged to bring a lunch. Located in Grand Foyer of Wortham Theater Center.

Thursday (5/5) — Seven museums are free each Thursday, while a number are free every day. Here is the free Thursday schedule:

  • Houston Museum of Natural Science — 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.
  • Children’s Museum of Houston — 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston — 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
  • The Health Museum — 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Houston Museum of African American Culture — 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Buffalo Soldiers National Museum — 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Holocaust Museum Houston — 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Thursday (5/5) — The Culinary Institute hosts free movies the first Thursday each month at both 1:15 p.m. and 6:15 p.m. in Crump Amphitheater. The May feature film is Waitress with free popcorn and drinks! Located at 7070 Allensby St.

Thursday (5/5) — Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a free outdoor screening of Three Amigos Thursday, 7 p.m. Bring your blanket and grab a spot on the lawn. This is located downtown at Market Square Park, 301 Milam.

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Free Weekend Fun in Houston April 29-May 1

Get ready for a weekend of free fun! What are your plans? Here is a snapshot of 11 Free Things to Do in Houston April 29-May 1:

Discovery Green in Houstonphoto: Katya Horner

FRIDAY

Learn improvTake a free Improv class, thanks to Station Theater’s Intro to Improv every Friday, 7:30 pm. All Intro students are then invited to stay to watch Supernova Armando show for free ($6 value) at 8:30 pm, a fast-paced comedy show with a guest monologist. Register for a free ticket online. Located at 1230 Houston Ave.

Dance the night away — Head to Sugar Land Town Square Friday for Dancing Under the Stars, 7:30 pm. Instructors from Fred Astaire Dance Studio will be on hand to offer instruction.

SATURDAY

Play outdoorsPostponed to June 25 due to weather. Don’t miss the FUNomenal Family Festival Saturday, 1 pm – 6 pm, at Discovery Green. The free event includes Baby Olympics, dance performances and DJ music. Located at Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney.

Explore museums in Zone 2 — The cultural block party in the Museum District returns Saturday with Museum Experience, held the last Saturday of January, April, July and September. Three museums in Zone 2 are offering free admission: Asia Society Texas Center, Houston Center for Contemporary Craft, and DiverseWorks. The day features special programming and food trucks. Check out the Zone 2 schedule of events online. Four other museums charge an admission.

Enjoy nature — It’s the 9th annual Nature Fest featuring amazing shows (Wild World of Animals, Birds of Prey, Crocodile Encounter) plus crafts, train ride, petting zoo, inflatables, rock wall, food trucks and more. Money raised benefits Habitat for Humanity. Located at Bridgeland’s Oak Meadow Park.

Enjoy a family brain dayPostponed to later date due to expected weather. Head to Buffalo Bayou Park Saturday for Stomp Out Stroke Festival 10 am – 5 pm, presented by UTHealth. The family day features all kinds of fun including health screenings, live performances by local dance and music groups, pic with Rocket’s Clutch, reptile booth, Children’s Zone and more. Register online for this free event. Located at The Water Works at Buffalo Bayou Park, 105 Sabine.

Play at the YMCAHealthy Kids Day is a free community event at all YMCA Houston locations Saturday. This free event features games, sports, health screenings, demonstrations, and more. Activities begin at 10 am and vary by location. New members will pay no joining fee on Healthy Kids Day, a $125 value. Search for the Y location online near you for specific hours and activities.

Watch hot dog eating — Memorial City is a sanctioned hot dog-eating contest location Saturday April 30 with Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest, 1 pm. The top male and top female finishers from this qualifier will compete in the 2016 Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog-Eating Contest at the original Nathan’s Famous in Coney Island on July 4th, 2016. Located at Memorial City Mall fireplace at the West Entrance.

Celebrate kidsCancelled due to weather. Don’t miss Conroe Kidzfest Saturday, 10 am – 5 pm, with tons of free family fun. The day includes water activities, game booths, live entertainment, climbing walls, inflatables, Zip Line, and activity villages. New this year are Snow Hills! Located at downtown Conroe.

Dance, dance, dance — Enjoy the latest choreography from China at East Meets West XIV Saturday, 8:15 p.m. Several dance companies plus the Houston Ballet II will present an evening of mesmerizing dance moves including contemporary and modern dance. East Meets West will be held at Miller Outdoor Theatre in Hermann Park. Free reserved covered seats are available on performance day at the Miller Box Office, 10:30 am – 1 pm.

SUNDAY

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo — Enjoy an evening with Mexico’s “Los Folkloristas,” who celebrate their 50th anniversary this year. Carrying more than 100 instruments in their collection, a performance with this seven-member ensemble is like taking a musical journey through Latin America. Performance is 7:30 pm at Miller Outdoor Theatre.

Free Prom Makeovers at Remington College

Remington College free prom servicesSenior girls preparing for prom should take note of this annual freebie! Students from Remington College’s School of Cosmetology will provide free services for girls attending senior prom: haircut, updos, make-up, manicures and pedicures. And a free haircut for guys! One location will be providing this free service in Houston this year:

Remington Greenspoint campus
11310 Greens Crossing
May 13, 14, 19, 20 (9:30 am – 1:30 pm)
Call 281-885-4490 for an appointment.

This will be Remington’s 7th year for complimentary prom services serving more than 3,000 students since its debut. Any high school student is eligible for the complimentary makeover, including hairstyling, make-up, pedicures, and manicures. Appointments are recommended.

7 Free Things to Do in Houston April 25-29

Don’t miss 7 options for free fun in Houston April 25-29 before planning your free and cheap weekend!

We Love Houston sign

Monday (4/25) — Enjoy a free TUTS’ screening of the classic film Kind Hearts and Coronets (the inspiration for Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder at TUTS) starring Alec Guiness at Sundance Cinemas. Seating is first come, first serve. Movie begins at 7 pm. Parking is free in the Theatre District Parking Garage via validation or reimbursement. Located at 510 Texas Ave.

Tuesday (4/26) — Celebrate Free Pretzel Day at Preztelmaker’s nine Houston-area locations. Simply share a “warm message of kindness” on social media with #WarmThoughts in exchange for your warm, sweet treat! {Or share a nice compliment, if you’re not on social media!} Available at Willowbrook Mall, Houston Premium Outlets, Deerbrook Mall, Brazos Mall, The Shops at Houston Center, Memorial City Mall, Pasadena Town Square, Pearland Mall and The Woodlands Mall.

Tuesday (4/26) — Snag free froyo at Orangeleaf Tuesday for “You Be You Day!” Simply share what makes you original (have a hidden talent, talk in a secret language) to the server and receive a 5oz. cup of yogurt and toppings free.

Wednesday (4/27) — POSTPONED due to weather. Watch for new date.
Kids can enjoy a book reading and craft at the Firethorne Little Free Library event Wednesday morning, 10 am. Children’s book author Cathey Graham Nickell will read her new book, “Arthur Zarr’s Amazing Art Car.” Children also can make a mixed-media art car. Refreshments will be served. This is located at the new Firethorne Little Free Library, next to the playground by the Firethorne Community Center, 28128 N. Firethorne Road.

Wednesday (4/27) — Houston Tomorrow and Houston-Galveston Area Council are hosting a lunch-time discussion around traffic safety in Houston this week. These Liveable Houston meetings are held the 4th Wednesday each month from noon – 1:30 pm, and open to the public. This month will discuss the state of safety in the region and activities the Regional Safety Council will be addressing in the next year. Bring your own lunch! RSVP online. Located at 3555 Timmons Lane.

Thursday (4/28) — Enjoy seven museums for free each Thursday in Houston’s Museum District.

  • Houston Museum of Natural Science — free Thursday 3 pm – 6 pm
  • Children’s Museum of Houston — free Thursday 5 pm – 8 pm
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Houston — free Thursday 10 am – 9 pm
  • The Health Museum — free Thursday 2 pm – 7 pm
  • Houston Museum of African American Culture — 6 pm – 8 pm
  • Buffalo Soldiers National Museum — 1 pm – 5 pm
  • Holocaust Museum Houston — 2 pm – 5 pm

{Don’t forget Houston’s 10 museums that are free every day.}

Thursday (4/28) — Bayou City Brass Band shares their talent at Discovery Green Thursday, 6:30 pm – 9 pm, as part of DaCamera JAM at Discovery Green. Blankets, lawn chairs and picnics are welcome. Located at 1500 McKinney.

Friday (4/29) — Kids will love to get creative at Abrakadoodle Home School Art Class. There are two age groups Friday at 10 am: children ages 2-5 will do tempura featuring Lisa Kowalski, and children 1st – 5th grade will draw an Egyptian Mummy. This is held the last Friday each month. Located at Central Green Park, 23501 Cinco Ranch. Blvd., in Katy.

Ways to Help Houston Flood Victims + Free Services

houston has heart2Houstonians are experiencing a tough week, whether your own home is flooded or you’re trying to get to work on flooded streets. But Houston has a big heart for others. Here are a few resources helping those affected by the flood — or ways you can serve if you want to volunteer.

How to Help Other Houstonians + Organizations Giving Back

The City of Houston created the April 2016 Storm Recovery site. Head there for info from various agencies plus news and information.

Mayor Turner created the Greater Houston Storm Relief Fund to accept flood relief donations. The Greater Houston Community Foundation, a 501 (c)(3)nonprofit public charity, will administer the fund. To donate, go to www.houstonrecovers.org and follow the instructions.

American Red Cross Disaster Relief is looking for help with volunteers and donations. Five volunteers per shelter are needed each eight-hour shift. Contact [email protected] To make a donation, visit www.redcross.org, call 1-800-RED-CROSS, or text the word REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. The American Red Cross set up shelters throughout Harris and Montgomery County to help flood victims. Find the shelters listed online.

Whataburger is giving uniformed first responders a free meal at all Houston area locations until midnight, April 23.

Gringo’s and Jimmy Changas are hosting a Flood Relief Fundraiser April 26. 50% of restaurant sales will go to Greater Houston Storm Relief. Their goal is $100,000.

Big Tex Storage is offering free rentals until May 31 for those affected by the flood at 24922 Kuykendahl Rd., Tomball. The company also is serving as a drop-off location for donations. This is a partnership with Spring Happenings and Spring Klein Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call Big Tex at (281) 377-3655 or the Spring Klein Chamber of Commerce at (281) 257-4431.

CubeSmart Self-Storage locations in Houston are offering one month free rental to those affected by the flood.

Houston Food Bank | 535 Portwall
Houston Food Bank is calling for volunteers to help sort, process and box food and other necessities for Disaster Boxes for those impacted by the floods. Shifts are at the Food Bank’s main warehouse facility, 535 Portwall. Register to volunteer online or call Van Tran at 713-547-8604. Individual and groups are welcome and needed. Children as young as six are welcome for kid-friendly projects. Cash donations can be made online at houstonfoodbank.org. Volunteers are encouraged to bring non-perishable food donations when they volunteer. Here are the shifts:

  • Morning: Monday – Saturday, 8 am to noon
  • Afternoon: Monday – Saturday, 1 pm – 4 pm
  • Evening: Monday – Friday, 6 pm – 9 pm

The Word Church Disaster Relief Site | 15403 Vantage Pkwy East, Houston
The Word Church is providing free groceries, clothes, toiletries and more to Houston flood victims Tuesday – Saturday 10 am – 2 pm. Volunteers are welcome, too. The Word Church is located at 15403 Vantage Pkwy East.

Community of Faith | 16124 Becker Rd., Hockley
Community of Faith is serving the Cypress community and helping families do whatever is needed to get back on track. Folks who need assistance in the area can complete a COF Disaster Work Order. Volunteer April 22, 11 am, at Community of Faith Lobby Entrance A (front). Folks will be tearing up carpet, removing debris, packing up household items, and distributing cleaning supplies. Volunteers must be at least 16 years old. Minors need a parent/guardian signed waiver. Wear gloves, closed-toed shoes and COF shirt, if you have one. RSVP to Hunter at [email protected]

Harvest Time Church | 17770 Imperial Valley Dr.
The church is accepting donations for diapers, wipes, personal hygiene products, snack foods for children, water, clothing. Hot meals for displaced residents are also needed if any caterers want to help.

Church of Champions | 12922 Cutten Road, Houston
The church is partnering with World Vision April 21, 9 am, distributing items to folks who stop by (blankets, emergency food kits, bottled water, hygiene kits, flood clean up kits, water filtration kits, and more). They also are going into communities in the area. Call 281-580-8674 for information.

Champion Forest Baptist Church | 15555 Stuebner Airline, Spring
The church is hosting Serve Saturday Flood Relief for those in the area. Volunteers will gather at 8:30 am at the Family Life Center. Teams will transition to Mud-Out/Flood Relief/Yard Crews, Homeless Ministry, Laundromat Teams, and Prayer Teams.

Free Weekend Fun in Houston April 22-24

Get ready for a weekend of free fun! What are your plans? Here is a snapshot of 10 Free Things to Do in Houston April 22-24:

san jacinto battle

FRIDAY

Enjoy movies under the stars — Don’t miss these free outdoor movies Friday night! 1) GreenStreet: Catch a screening of The Breakfast Club at GreenStreet downtown. Movie begins at 8 pm. 2) Hobby Center: Enjoy a free outdoor movie of Heathers, thanks to Alamo Drafthouse Rolling Roadshow and Theater Under the Stars. Movie will be shown outdoors in the breezeway of Hobby Center beginning at 7 pm. Located at 800 Bagby.

Learn about saving lives in the pool — USA Swimming Foundation is hosting a free Town Hall Friday with Olympic gold medalists Cullen Jones and Rowdy Gaines. Jones will host an in-water instruction and USA Swimming Foundation will give an out-of-water presentation to spread the message of saving lives through swim lessons. Registration begins at 5 pm and Town Hall at 5:30 pm. Jones and Gaines will host a meet-n-greet and autograph session after the assembly. This is located at Tompkins High Schook, 4400 Falcon Landing Blvd., in Katy.

SATURDAY

Engage in Texas history — It’s the 180th year of Texas Independence! Go back in history Saturday at the San Jacinto Day Festival and Reenactment at San Jacinto Battleground State Park. From 10 am – 6 pm, folks can enjoy live music, visit Mexican and Texian camps of 1836, watch demos of 19th century craftsmen plus enjoy kid’s entertainment, camel rides, snakes, and more. Catch the Battle of San Jacinto Reenactment beginning at 3 pm as Texas wins its independence. It’s a day of fun set against living history. New parking this year: Event parking will be in the Shell Contractor parking lot at 4400 Block Hwy 225, Deer Park, located on the north side of the feeder road of Pasadena Freeway (HWY 225).  Free shuttles between the festival and this lot run from 9:30 am to 6:30 pm. Located at 3523 Independence Parkway in La Porte. photo: BFSMan

Celebrate musicHeights Kids’ Day of Music is a free day of live music and outdoor fun from 10 am – 2 pm featuring instrument petting zoo, educational demonstrations, live performances, a chance to meet opera singers at the Singing Station and more. 

Enjoy STEM Saturdays — Kids can enjoy a free STEM Saturday each week at Discovery Green, 12:30 pm. Girls Inc. hosts a Science, Technology, Education and Mathematics program for 60 kids. First come, first serve. Located at 1500 McKinney.

houston arboretumCelebrate the earthEarth Day is a free celebration at Houston Arboretum & Nature Center packed with fun activities for the whole family, 10 am – 2 pm, including earth-conscious activities, demonstrations, crafts, face painting, guided nature hikes, and live Texas reptiles.Located at 4501 Woodway.

Party at the festival — Don’t miss Willow Waterhole Music Fest, a free two-day music festival Saturday and Sunday. The variety of music includes blues, Latin, zydeco, big band, R & B, rock, Cuban and more plus performances by area high schools. The Rock & Craft Fair is open till 6 pm each day. Located at Willow Waterhole, 5304 Gasmer, 11 am – 10 pm.

SUNDAY

Enjoy free yogaBreakfast Yoga Club returns Sunday at Rienzi, 9 am – 11 am. Enjoy a free morning of yoga. Guests are invited to stay for refreshments and a tour of Rienzi’s house and gardens. Located at 1406 Kirby.

Party at the festival — Don’t miss Willow Waterhole Music Fest, a free two-day music festival Saturday and Sunday 11 am – 7 pm. The variety of music includes blues, Latin, zydeco, big band, R & B, rock, Cuban and more plus performances by area high schools. The Rock & Craft Fair is open till 6 pm each day. Located at Willow Waterhole, 5304 Gasmer, 11 am 7 pm.

Love classical music — Classic masterworks by Rossini, Puccini, Delibes and Vaughan Williams will fill Nora’s Home to serve as a celebration for National Donate Life Month. More than 30 musicians from the non-profit organization Houston’s Orchestra on Call will assemble to present a free classical concert to Nora’s Home patients, families and caregivers. Free and open to the public. Complimentary food and beverages will be provided. For more information or to RSVP, email Natalie at natalie.lencion[email protected] or call 832-831-3721.

7 Free Things to Do in Houston April 18-22

Don’t miss 7 options for free fun in Houston April 18-22 before planning your free and cheap weekend!

We Love Houston sign

Monday (4/18) — Stay home today to be safe and dry! Crazy Houston weather!

Tuesday (4/19) — Kids will love the catchy, Latin-inspired music of Hot Peas ‘N Butter Tuesday, 11 am, at Miller Outdoor Theatre. The NYC-based multi-cultural family band has been featured on Nick Jr.

Tuesday (4/19) — Circus Arts is a new way to get fit featuring ground arts and acrobatics Tuesdays downtown 6 pm – 8 pm. Some of the fun activities include contortion/flexibility, juggling, low tight wire, partner acrobatics, juggling and hand balancing. Located at Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney.

Wednesday (4/20) — View a special screening of Racing Extinction to celebrate Earth Day at Rice Media Center, 6:30 pm – 9 pm. Air Alliance Houston will host a Q&A panel after the movie with an actor from the movie, NASA astronaut, and Stewardship Coordinator from Armand Bayou Nature Center. This is free and open to the public. {A $5 donation is suggested for dinner and facility use.} Located at 2030 University Blvd.

Wednesday (4/20) — Central Library offers a weekly LEGO Mania activity for kids age 5-12. Kids can get creative and explore their engineering skills! Located at 500 McKinney downtown.

Wednesday (4/20) — {Not free, but cheap!} It’s April $3 Family Rewind at Studio Movie Grill! This month’s feature is The Sandlot, 7 pm. Located at Copperfield and CityCentre locations.

Thursday (4/21) — Enjoy seven museums for free each Thursday in Houston’s Museum District.

  • Houston Museum of Natural Science — free Thursday 3 pm – 6 pm
  • Children’s Museum of Houston — free Thursday 5 pm – 8 pm
  • Museum of Fine Arts, Houston — free Thursday 10 am – 9 pm
  • The Health Museum — free Thursday 2 pm – 7 pm
  • Houston Museum of African American Culture — 6 pm – 8 pm
  • Buffalo Soldiers National Museum — 1 pm – 5 pm
  • Holocaust Museum Houston — 2 pm – 5 pm

{Don’t forget Houston’s 10 museums that are free every day.}

Tax Day Freebies & Deals in Houston 2016 {Updated}

Tax Day Freebies in HoustonUPDATE: Call ahead regarding these deals for April 18. Many businesses are not open today due to the flooding and threatening weather. Be safe!

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Businesses are gearing up for Tax Day freebies and deals. It’s always a favorite list here at Houston on the Cheap!

NEW UPDATES

Pei Wei — Enjoy $5 off $20 purchase at Pei Wei April 15-18 only to help ease the tax burden. Show or print this link to get the deal.

Chuck E. Cheese — Order a large thin & crispy pizza and get a second large cheese pizza for free! Available April 18 only.

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Great American Cookies — Folks can get a free chocolate chip cookie at Great American Cookies April 18, thanks to its Tax Day promotion. No purchase is necessary — or proof of taxes filed! Fourteen locations in Houston.

Hard Rock Cafe — Houstonians can earn a free Legendary Burger from Hard Rock Cafe just by “singing for their supper.” Folks simply select their favorite song and perform it live on the restaurant stage. The promotion is April 18, 7 pm – 9 pm.

HydroMassage — Get a free massage at participating HydroMassage locations across the United States April 18-22, 2016. More than 10 Houston area locations are participating this year. No call ahead is needed at Planet Fitness locations. Just print this coupon for this free deal.

Kona Ice Houston — Enjoy a cup of free tropical shaved ice from Kona Ice Houston April 18 for its National Chill Out Day promotion. One confirmed location is Mytiburger (2211 W. 43rd) from 12 pm – 2 pm. Tweet your zip code April 18 to @konaice to find one near you!

Mascalzone — This Italian eatery is helping folks save on Tax Day with its $10.99 lasagna special ($16 reg.). This offer is available 11 am – 11 pm at both Houston locations.

Office Depot Office Max — The office supply retailer is helping you April 18 with 5lbs. free shredding. Print the coupon.

Schlotzsky’s — On April 18 only, get a free small The Original sandwich with purchase of a 32 oz. drink and chips. No coupon required.

Sonic —Sonic Drive-In is offering half-price cheeseburgers all day April 18.

Staples — Folks can get 5lbs. of free document shredding April 18 at all Staples locations nationwide. This is available all day.