Feb. 23, Tennessean’s Ms. Cheap, Mary Hance
Ms. Cheap: Movie savings get top billing for Oscars
It’s time for another one of my “C Lists” — my list of cheap things I like — inspired by Oprah’s “O” lists of her favorite things.
• First, I am really loving the Regal Crown Club Rewards card, especially this time of year with the Academy Awards on the horizon.
This month, we’ve been going to the movies every week in anticipation of Sunday’s Oscars, and although it has not been super cheap, it has surely been fun.
In the past few weeks, we have seen “Lincoln,” “Argo” and “Silver Linings Playbook,” and we hope to see “Zero Dark Thirty” tomorrow.
To stay within budget, we have timed our movie outings to get in on the discounted matinee show prices, and we are taking full advantage of my handy Regal rewards club card.
If you go to Regal theaters often, you simply must have this free card, which gives you special deals, such as $2 popcorn on Tuesdays, and earns you points toward free popcorn, drinks and even free movie tickets. Just show your card at the box office and the concession stand and get points for every dollar you spend.
We got a free Diet Coke last week, and I just know (hope, hope, hope) we are going to get a big bag of free popcorn on Sunday. Honestly, with concession prices as outrageous as they are, these freebies are BIG. Otherwise, I think I would have to just do without.
To get your own Regal card, fill out a form when you are at the theater or online at www.regmovies.com/Crown-Club.
• I love that stores such as Dollar General have good “comeback” coupons on their receipts. Just this week, I stopped into a Dollar General store to buy some basics, since I had a coupon for $5 off a $25 purchase, which I had clipped from Sunday’s paper.
Well, lo and behold, when I checked out with my $25 worth of stuff, my receipt offered me another coupon for $5 off a $25 purchase that is good for today, plus a $2 Whopper deal at Burger King. The receipt also invited me to take an online survey about my visit in hopes of being one of the three monthly winners of $1,000. I’ll let you know if I win! That would certainly make it to the top of my next “C” list.
I love the idea of a “Drop Everything and Read” day, and there is one Tuesday that our Nashville Public Library’s Limitless Library has cooked up as part of Read Across America Week this week.
The local Drop Everything and Read event, affectionately known as “DEAR,” is from 9:10 to 9:30 a.m. Tuesday. There will be reading events at schools and libraries across town, including Bellevue Middle School, where Tennessee first lady Crissy Haslam will do the honors, said Stephanie Ham, project coordinator for the Limitless Library.
Ham said this event, designed to promote reading, started with several schools and at last count will involve 80 schools and 40,000 students, plus many adults who may “drop everything and read” for 20 minutes Tuesday.
• I know a lot of working moms and dads would like to find affordable and fun options to occupy the kiddos during spring break.
The good news is that our Midstate YMCAs may be a good bet for members, as well as non-members.
There is a swim camp at the Northwest YMCA that is just $50 a week, including breakfast, lunch and a snack. “We keep the kids from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and are talking about providing early drop-off care as well,” said Leloni Hamilton, aquatics director at the Northwest Y.
The camp is March 18-22 and March 25-29 and is for children ages 5 and older. “They can come both weeks or just one week,” Hamilton said, noting that children from all over Middle Tennessee are welcome, and that participants can be beginners or more advanced swimmers.
The YMCA has spring break camps at other centers at various prices. Check them out at ymcamidtn.org/about/news. If you hear of other affordable, fun camps for spring break or for this summer, let me know and I will try to get the news out.
• Readers often ask me if I know of places where they can rent a booth and sell things in a yard-sale setting. Either they don’t have a good spot for their sale, they live in a place that doesn’t allow sales or they would prefer the economy and camaraderie of a community-like sale.
So, today I like being able to tell you about the Community Yard Sale and Flea Market from 7 a.m. to noon March 2 at Western Hills Church of Christ, where you can set up and/or shop.
Spaces in the church will be rented for $25 to $45, and you can sell pretty much whatever you want and keep all of the proceeds. All advertising and logistics are included. The flier says, “Why go to the trouble of having a yard sale when you can join with your friends and neighbors, enjoy increased traffic, and support a great cause” — the TORCH Mission Fund to build homes in the Honduras.”
Sounds like a great alternative. They even will have Goodwill on hand to take whatever is left. This is the fourth annual sale. Last year’s sale attracted more than 500 shoppers to check out the 22 booths, plus the church’s flea market of donated items.
Western Hills is at 7565 Charlotte Ave. For information or to reserve a spot, call Gail at 615-479-7712 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
• I also like the promotion The Tennessean is doing with Kroger where you can get your Sunday Tennessean for $1.49 with your Kroger Plus card through March 31.