Top 5 Spots for Free Fun


Maybe there’s no such thing as a free lunch, but there are plenty of free good times to be had around the city.

1. Contemporary Arts Center
Thanks to our generous (and apparently art-loving) friends at Macy’s, admission to the CAC is free on Monday nights from 5–9 pm. Think of it as an arty alternative to your usually boozy happy hour (and nobody said you can’t have a drink after). 44 E. 6th St., downtown, (513) 345-8400,   

2. Dance_MF
On the first Saturday of each month, The Projectmill hosts a free dance party at Northside Tavern. If you’ve never been adrift in a hipster dance haze, you should probably try it at least once. 4163 Hamilton Ave., Northside, (513) 542-3603,

3. Cincinnati Art Museum
A series of grants and endowments makes the CAM free every day of the week—and it’s not just the permanent collection, either. Special exhibitions have been free since 2009 (though there is a $4 per car parking fee). 953 Eden Park Dr., Eden Park, (513) 721-2787,

4. Krohn Conservatory
Down the road from the CAM is one of Cincinnati’s most recognizable landmarks, the Krohn Conservatory (otherwise known as this blogger’s favorite local example of Art Deco architecture). All year long you can see a rainforest, a desert (cacti!), and a whole house full of orchids, plus trees, caves, and waterfalls. Heads up: While the Krohn is free to all visitors during most of the year, the annual holiday show (now thru Jan. 1) does have an admission price: $6 for adults, $5 for seniors; $4 for children 5-12; children 5 and under are free. 1501 Eden Park Dr., Eden Park, (513) 421-4086, 

5. Shows at MOTR PUB
It may be just a modest OTR pub, but Top 5 Blog veteran MOTR knows how to put on a good show. Count on free live music there nearly every night from indie bands both big and small. Stop in for a pint and you just might hear the next big thing. 1345 Main St., Over-the-Rhine, (513) 381-6687,

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