L.L. Bean in South Windsor offers a variety of no and low-cost outdoor activity clinics, including stand-up paddle-boarding, GPS navigating, camping essentials, basic kayaking and more. (Most fees range from free to $20.) Pre-registration is required and there are age restrictions for some of the classes. Information: www.llbean.com or 860-643-3840
Spend $65 or more from Monday, April 21 through Saturday, April 26 and you’ll get a free, limited-edition Earth Day tote bag. While you’re there, you can also get a free mini-facial. Information: www.origins.com.
Bring five empty plastic bags into any Disney Store on Tuesday and you’ll get a free “Bears” reusable tote bag. One per customer, while supplies last.
Return any six empty MAC containers to a MAC counter, store or www.maccosmetics.com for a free lipstick of your choice. This promotion is ongoing. (For details, visit www.maccosmetics.com and type “recycle” into the search field.)
In honor of National Parks Week and just in time for Earth Day, the National Park Service will waive entrance fees to all national parks on Saturday and Sunday, April 19 and 20. Information: www.nps.gov.
Send free green love and save trees with Earth Day e-cards at 123Greetings.com.
Don’t forget — Easter Sunday means marked-down candy and gifts on Monday, April 21. CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens, Target and Wal-Mart will be slashing prices on candy, bunnies and other seasonal items.
Guys can double up on a new spring wardrobe without paying double the price. Most merchandise, including suits and jackets, is buy one, get one free at Men’s Wearhouse stores. Sale ends Saturday. Some exclusions. Visit www.menswearhouse.com for details.
Spring and summer clothing for the entire family is 50 percent off at The Second Chance Shop of Simsbury, at 12 Station Street. Store hours are Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Dance Village, 171 Spencer St. in Manchester celebrates 40 years in business with discounts on Capezio and Bloch merchandise on Friday and Saturday, April 18 and 19. Information: 860-645-6606 or www.dance-village-ct.com.
Select curtains, pillows, bedding, fabric, trim and accessories are up to 50 percent off at RLF HOME, 30 Bartholomew Avenue, Hartford. Hours are Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Information: 860-951-8110.
Spend $50 or more at L.L. Bean and you’ll get a free $10 gift card. Offer good through Sunday, April 20 in stores and at www.llbean.com.
It’s spring sale time at Antiques on Main, 165-167 Main St. in Wethersfield. Sale ends Saturday, April 19. Store hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 10:30 am. to 5:30 p.m.
The Eliza B / Leather Man Ltd Outlet store celebrates the end of winter with a Burn Your Socks opening sale on Saturday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Bring in a sock for the fire and you’ll get $10 off a pair of sandals. (One discount per person.) The store, at 55 Plains Road in Essex, features trendy sandals for women, leather goods and accessories, including headbands, watchbands and totes, along with men’s leather goods, fashionable pet leashes and collars, fabrics, ribbons and trims. The store is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. Information: www.elizab.com.
Artist Karen Rossi will hold an open house and sale from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 12, at her studio, 60 Estey Road, Norfolk — and she’s offering a special spring deal. Spend $20 and get your choice of tabletop chimes free, value $20. Information: 860-305-6579 or www.karenrossi.com.
Amelie Michel, an Essex company specializing in high-end French linens, holds a warehouse sale 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday through Sunday, April 11 through 13. Merchandise will include table linens, pillows and soaps. Discounts are as much as 50 percent off. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The sale is at 192 Westbrook Road. Information: 860-767-0336, www.ameliemichel.com.
Gledhill Nursery, 600 Mountain Road, West Hartford, will hold a spring open house Saturday and Sunday, April 12 and 13, with free refreshments and special deals. Information: www.gledhillnursery.com.
Spend $50 or more at L.L. Bean and you’ll get a free $10 gift card. Offer good through April 20 in stores and at www.llbean.com.
Friends of the Manchester Public Library, 586 Main St. in Manchester, holds their spring book sale on Saturday, April 12, from 9 a.m. to 1 pm.
The Perfect Toy, 290 West Main St./Route 44 in Avon, holds a spring sale with savings of 20 percent on all toys. The sale begins Thursday, April 10 and ends Sunday, April 12. Store hours are Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Information: 860-678-7015.
It’s spring sale time at Antiques on Main, 165-167 Main St. in Wethersfield. Sale ends April 19. Hours are Wednesday through Saturday, 10:30 am. to 5:30 p.m.
Classic soft serve sundaes are buy-one-get-one free at Carvel stores every Wednesday. Information: www.carvel.com.
The Friends of Ellington Library, 93 Main St. in Ellington, are holding a bag of books sale on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, April 11, 12 and 13. On Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., bags of books are $9; on Sunday from 1 to 4:45 p.m., bags are $5.
Head to the L.L. Bean store at Evergreen Walk in South Windsor this Friday, Saturday and Sunday for the annual Spring Fishing Weekend. The event features free fly-casting clinics and fly-tying seminars, equipment and products demonstrations and kids’ activities. Information: www.llbean.com.
It’s a new trend in summer sports, and if you visit L.L. Bean in South Windsor any Saturday this summer, you can take a course in stand-up paddle-boarding for $20. Shuttles take participants to a nearby location, where L.L. Bean guides provide all gear and equipment and teach basic techniques and safety skills. (Pre-registration required. Ages 8 years old and up. Kids under 14 must be accompanied by a participating adult.) Information: www.llbean.com. Registration: 860-643-3840.
School vacation, just ahead — which means more time for family fun. But movies, museum admissions and other fun stuff can drain the budget. We’ve got plenty of low and no-cost options.
Bow Tie Cinema, including the Palace 17 & Odyssey Theater in Hartford, screens free kids’ films 10 a.m. Tuesday and Wednesday from June 25 and 26 though through Aug. 20 and 21. Titles include “Kung Fu Panda 2,” “Madagascar 3,” and “How To Train Your Dragon.” Information: BowTiecinemas.com.
The Museum Pass Program, available at area libraries, offers free passes (usually for two adults and two children) to state museums, parks and attractions. Passes are good for one-day admissions to such destinations as the New England Air Museum, the Connecticut Trolley Museum, Mystic Aquarium, Lutz Children’s Museum in Manchester and loads of others. Check with your local library for details.
Lowe’s stores hold Build and Grow classes on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the summer. Kids create a project and also receive free aprons, goggles and project patches. (Recommended for children in grades 1 through 5.) Find locations and times and register at www.LowesBuildandGrow.com.
Home Depot stores hold free hands-on workshops for children ages 5 through 12, on the first Saturday of each month from 9 a.m. to noon. Kids build and take home craft projects and get a apron, commemorative pin and certificate of achievement. To find Information, at www.homedepot.com, then scroll to bottom of home page and click on workshops under the “Project How-To” heading.
Dive! Dive! Dive! The Submarine Force Museum in Groton is offering a free Summer of Fun children’s science program, which takes place each Friday, from June 28 through Aug. 31. Information: www.ussnautilus.org.
On July 22, the Kidsville Kuckoo Revue holds a free singalong concert at 7 p.m. at the Manchester Bandshell, 60 Bidwell St. Information: www.manchesterbandshell.com.
At GymboreeClasses.com, you can print out a free class pass for a free play-and-learn class in North Haven or Danbury.
Some Apple stores offer summer Apple camps for kids ages 8 through 12. Participants make movies, create music and present their creations at an Apple camp in-store film festival. Contact your local Apple store for details and dates or check www.apple.com/retail/learn/youth. To sign up to be notified when registration opens, go to www.apple.com/retail/camp/notify.html.
Some Microsoft Stores, including the Danbury location, offer free YouthSpark Summer Camps for ages 8–13 and free morning “Tot” programs. Check http://content.microsoftstore.com/events for details.
The Kids Bowl Free program, at eight Connecticut bowling alleys, lets children bowl two free games every day, all summer long, by printing out coupons online. Each center has its own age restrictions, as well as any times coupons are not valid. Find lanes and sign up at www.kidsbowlfree.com.
Children 15 and under bowl free as part of AMF Bowling Centers’ Summer Unplugged promotion. Register the kids online, print out a certificate and take it to a participating center. You’ll get a membership card that’s good for two free games per child per day through Sept. 2. Register at FreeBowling.amf.com. At Brunswick Zone locations, (there’s one in Wallingford), students 18 and younger get to bowl one free game a day in June, July and August. To participate, you’ll need to choose your location and sign up for the Brunswick Bonus Zone online at www.bowlbrunswick.com.
The Pottery Barn Summer Reading Challenge encourages kids to create a summer reading list. Those who complete a list, and stop by a Pottery Barn Kids store by Aug. 26, get a free book. Information: www.potterybarnkids.com.
The summer reading program at Barnes & Noble lets kids in grades 1 through 6 earn a free book when they read eight books during summer vacation. Here’s how it works: Kids read any eight books and use a special reading journal to record their impressions. Students who bring their completed journals to any Barnes & Noble store by Sept. 3 get a free book from the summer-reading-program list. Information: www.barnesandnoble.com.
TD Bank pays kids $10 to get reading this summer. Kids read any 10 books during summer vacation, write the titles on the summer reading log and take the form to the nearest TD Bank location by Sept 30. The bank will deposit $10 into any existing or new Young Savers account. Information: www.tdbank.com/summerreading.
L.L. Bean stores, including the South Windsor location, offer a series of free and low cost workshops, such as kayaking, birding, fly casting and others. Most are designed for ages 8 and up, (kids under 14 must be accompanied by a participating adult). Information: www.llbean.com or 860-643-3840.
It’s spring fishing weekend at L.L. Bean stores. At the South Windsor location (Evergreen Walk), experts will be offering free workshops, clinics and demonstrations on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. During the event, shoppers get discounts on select fishing gear and apparel. Information: www.llbean.com.
Visit L.L. Bean in South Windsor this summer to sign up for a 1-1/2 hour Kayaking Discovery Course for $20. Shuttles pick up participants at the store and take them to a nearby kayaking location, where guides provide gear, instruction, solo kayaks for each student and an introduction to the area’s ecosystem and area. (Minimum age is 8 years old and anyone 17 or under must be accompanied by a parent or guardian) Courses are offered on weekends through September. Information: http://www.www.llbean.com.
Visit L.L. Bean in South Windsor any weekend this summer and you can sign up for a 2 1/2 hour Kayaking Discovery Course for $20. Shuttles pick up participants at the store and take them to a nearby kayaking location, where L.L. Bean guides provide all gear, instruction and equipment. Discovery Courses are offered several times a day on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through September. Information: www.llbean.com.