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Free Things to do in Jacksonville

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Looking for something to do in Jacksonville, but need to keep expenses down? You'd be surprised at the number of things to do in Jacksonville for free. Most free events are announced monthly, so check our current events calendar to stay updated, but there are also a few seasonal or year round attractions in the city.

1. Visit Jacksonville's Parks

Jacksonville operates the largest outdoor urban park center in the United States, with over 80,000 acres of parks. The city has 262 parks, including the Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve in the Fort Caroline area. The city's first park, located downtown, is Hemming Plaza. The city of Jacksonville takes great pride in its parks, and each of them offer a relaxing environment with great scenery. Memorial Park in Riverside, for example, sits on the edge of the St. John's and has a great view of the river.

2. Visit the Beach

Image credit: Jon Dawson

Jacksonville's beaches are the most popular in the country, according to information compiled by The Daily Beast. The city of Jacksonville Beach offers free public parking and hosts free events, such as outdoor concerts and festivals throughout the year.

3. Downtown Art Walk

Photo credit: Edward R. Jenkins

Jacksonville's downtown art walk has quickly turned into one of the most popular Jacksonville events. Downtown Art Walk is held on the first Wednesday of each month from 5 to 9 p.m., rain or shine. It's centered around Hemming Plaza in downtown Jacksonville, but expands several blocks. The Jacksonville Landing usually features a special event or two for art walk.

4. Museums and More

Photo by Edward R. Jenkins

Jacksonville is home to a number of high-quality museums, including the historic Cummer Museum of Art and the Museum of Contemporary Art. MOSH, the Museum of Science and History, is a popular family destination. While most of Jacksonville's museums have a small entrance fee to help with operational costs, some, some offer special promotion. The Cummer, for example, provides free admission on Tuesdays.

5. Movies in the Park

Photo: Edward R. Jenkins

The city of Jacksonville hosts a seasonal event known as Movies in the Park. Held in Treaty Oak Park, the event features free outdoor movies. Classics such as Back to the Future have been shown in the past. Movies in the Park is a Spring event, held for four consecutive weeks. The city of Jacksonville Beach holds a similar event, known as Moonlight Movies on the SeaWalk Pavilion.

6. Free Concerts

Image credit: City of Jacksonville

There are a number of free concerts and festivals throughout Jacksonville year round. The best example is the Jacksonville Jazz Festival, held each May, featuring a number of high-profile Jazz performers. The Jacksonville Landing often has free outdoor concerts as well. Although the musical guests are often local or regional acts, bigger names come through from time to time, such as The Flobots (known for their hit "Handlebars").

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