Pensacola, Florida
Thursday September 18th 2014

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Budgeting 101

Back To School = Back To Budgeting

The dog days of summer are over.

For college students, that means no more lazy days by the pool, bar hopping on the beach, summer travel and basically–freedom.
To help make your transition back to the classroom bearable, we’ve created our Cheap Thrills issue, because IN (and many of our readers) knows what it’s like to live on a budget.

Many have jumped on the couponing bandwagon to save. They’re hitting the papers and coupon websites and digging up additional resources to help them save, whether on groceries, toothpaste or cocktails. IN reporter Sarah McCartan immersed herself in the local world of couponing and the people who do it, and–those profiled on TLC’s “Extreme Couponing” excluded–they’re not that crazy! In the current economic climate, it seems almost crazy NOT to coupon.

We also put together some of our favorite ways to save–free music, cheap drinks and other fun stuff –that will get you through this school year with your pocketbook intact.
Because we know you have better things to spend your hard-earned scholarship money on – like your Chemistry 101 textbook.

Old School Savings, Move Over for New School Craze
By Sarah McCartan

Hard times in the land of plenty, a deal-driven virtual world and basic cable have joined forces over the past few years to transform couponing from an old school thing of the past to a new school craze.

What once had a negative stigma attached now has become a bargain outlet many are turning to as a way to be resourceful. It is proving to be a movement that is offering mega savings and even becoming a fun hobby for some. As summer screeches to a halt, what better time to save, whether going back to school, trying to make ends meet or simply hoping for that extra leftover cash to splurge on a night out on the town or a mini-vacation.

The Hype
From the starving artist to blue-collared and white-collared workers, to the neighbor who boasts a Ph.D., all can stand to learn a thing or two from those who have immersed themselves in this coupon kingdom and are raking in the savings. A CNN Money poll indicated that 87 percent of respondents are currently taking advantage of coupons or other discount offers to some extent. Also, just in case you are having doubts on how socially accepted this craze is, surprisingly enough, just under half of all of these deal seekers come from households earning more than $70,000 annually. With all the deals out there and the state of the economy, businesses are practically begging you to partake in savings, so why resist?

The Game
Although coupons still exist in their traditional form within newspapers, making up close to half of those redeemed, the majority of those who are onboard with this flourishing trend are finding their deals in a more refined way, through various targeted coupon websites, including blogs run by professional “couponers”, Facebook groups and more. Sites such as coupons.com allow you to type in specifics such as zip code to find out what coupons are redeemable locally and then print (most allow two per computer). Local coupon go-to Coupon-chix even does the match ups for you to eliminate some of this leg work, as well as offers a series of classes, webinars and house parties to help get you started.

The Players
So who is playing this game? We have all seen what extreme couponing can look like thanks to cable television; however, it does not have to mirror the extremists to be successful. Although many of us are currently taking part in deals on a regular basis, any seasoned couponer will tell you couponing is a commitment. It takes organization, motivation and strategic planning. It is not for those who just can’t be bothered, but if you can be bothered, these locals ladies gave IN a firsthand glance at their experiences and are proof that it is worth the while. Both of the following women are shining examples of how a little dedication and just a few hours a week can take you far.

For some, like Ayla Freeman, couponing has been a lifelong endeavor. “Growing up, my mother used coupons, so I was introduced to it at an early age. I started couponing on my own when I moved out of my parents’ house.” Throughout the past year of her couponing Freeman dedicated a blog to show friends how to live frugally and enjoy life more, clearing up the misnomer that this lifestyle is limiting. The blog boasts some of her best finds, her biggest savings to date being 98 percent off of groceries at Publix.

Although a much newer undertaking for others like Felicia Terhaar, couponing has quickly become a way of life, integrated in her daily routine. Terhaar has gotten her family on board as well, which is something she claims is the key to making it work. The Terhaars were doing just fine, but now after just a few months of diligent couponing, they have more things than they have ever had and are saving money. “It is all about figuring out what system works for you. It is just trial and error,” she admits. Terhaar’s grocery shopping trips, the majority of which are done at Publix, are already yielding 80 percent savings. Her words of wisdom? “If you see something that’s a really good price, you aren’t the only one in town who sees that is a really good price. It is about waiting, and figuring out what the best price is going to be.”

Free bucks?
Speaking of free bucks, you think we are joking, but there are extra bucks involved. You are not just saving. While stores are not giving out cold cash, they do give out overages in the form of store bucks that you can use on something you want to splurge on or something you do not have a coupon for. You can also end up with free gift cards or often, thanks to peel-off coupons, free chips when you purchase a six back of beer, or fruits and veggies when you buy a box of cereal.

Also, you never know when your voice can yield even more savings than you anticipated. “Some nontraditional deals I take part in are emailing companies to tell them about my experience, whether it is good or bad. Three out of five times they mail me a coupon for free products. I get $100-$200 worth of free product coupons a week for things I use,” Freeman shared.

The Reservations
To those who confuse stocking up with hoarding, Terhaar explains, “You are not hoarding because sales cycles rotate.” Stocking up lets you avoid running to the store at the last minute for a function. Currently, Terhaar’s summer stash of barbecue sauce has her ready at a moment’s notice for the next neighborhood cookout.
Coupons aren’t only for food that is not appealing. In surveying one of her coupon books, a must for couponers who want to stay highly organized, I spotted coupons for a variety of attractive items, including my own favorite vegan food and beverage staples, soy milk and peanut butter. Forget the notion that none of it is healthy or there are not coupons that are diet specific. In fact, as Terhaar pointed out, “When is the last time you saw store brand cow’s milk on sale?”

The Rewards
Not only can you help friends and family save, but you can help the less fortunate on a larger scale. So what if you end up with leftover canned food. Take it to a local food bank or help your child’s food drive. Send it overseas to the troops. If this still seems like work, remember there are deals waiting for you in town every day courtesy of local businesses that have jumped on the Groupon train. Social media outlets have jumped on board as businesses are constantly tweeting deals or running Facebook promotions.

Whether a way of life or a creative hobby, push to challenge yourself to save more than you did the week before. Form a couponing group. Trade coupons with members. Diapers for beer, you get the picture. But remember, nothing should take over your life. Freeman sums it up best, stating, “Don’t become so deal-centric that you don’t enjoy life. It doesn’t matter how many items I have in my refrigerator that I got for free, I always make it a point to enjoy a cheeseburger and a Sham-wow at the Elbow Room at least once a week.”

The Hookup
From coupon match ups, local offers, online discounts to a hodgepodge of daily deals, the following links are a few resources to get you going in the right direction for instant savings.

coupon-chix.com
coupons.com
groupon.com
iheartpublix.com
livingsocial.com
retailmenot.com

Drink Specials

Work hard. Play hard. Here are a few of our favorite local drink specials to take the edge off without spending a fortune.

Emerald City 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Sundays and Wednesdays. Drink and Drown. $10 gets you free well drinks and draft beer, plus reduced call and premium drink prices. 406 E. Wright St. 433-9491 or emeraldcitypensacola.com.

The Fish House 4-6 p.m. The Big Mix. All day, every day. All drinks buy one get one free. 600 S. Barracks St. 470-0003 or goodgrits.com.

Hopjacks Pizza Kitchen & Taproom 11 a.m-2:30 a.m. Sucker-Free Sundays. All draft beers half price. Hopjacks Pizza Kitchen & Taproom, 10 Palafox Place. 497-6073 or hopjacks.com.

Hub Stacey’s Downtown All day, every day. Ladies drink half off (everything). 312 E. Government St. 469-1001 or hubstaceys.com.

The Leisure Club All day. 2-for-Tuesdays. All glasses of house wine half price on Tuesdays. 126 S. Palafox. 912-4229 or tlcdowntown.com.

Pensacola Bay Brewery All day, every day. $5 will you buy you a souvenir pint glass—and unlimited tastings…225 E. Zaragoza St. 434-3353 or pbbrew.com.

The Wine Bar 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Get a carafe of wine (choose from their entire wine list) for the price of a glass. 16 S. Palafox, Suite 100. 607-2089 or chanswine.com.

Of course, the best drinks are free drinks:

Free Wine Tastings

Thursday:
Aragon Wine Market 5-7 p.m. 27 S. Ninth Ave., 433-9463 or aragonwinemarket.com

Friday: 
City Grocery 5:15-7:30 p.m. weekly. 2050 N. 12th Ave. 469-8100.
Distinctive Kitchens 4:30-7 p.m. Includes beer tastings. 29 S. Palafox Place. 438-4688 or dk4u.com.

*World Market in Pensacola hosts a free wine tasting about once a quarter. Call for details. 5420 N. Ninth Ave. 475-0655 or worldmarket.com.

Culture Vulture
You don’t have to spend a ton for cultural enlightenment and entertainment. You can find free and discounted admission to a variety of performances, exhibitions and other stuff that’s good for your brain.

GULF BREEZE CINEMA 4
If you want to escape the crowds of the area’s major movie theatres, sneak away to Gulf Breeze’s Cinema 4. You can check out unique movies not shown locally anywhere else, for a price that’s hard to beat.
Coming Soon: “The Guard”, “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan”, “The Help”, “Beginners”, “A Better Life”, “Don’t be Afraid of the Dark” and “The Beaver”.
The theatre offers matinee shows at 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. and evening shows at 7 p.m.
Adults: $8
Seniors: $6
Children: $6
Matinee: $6
On Wednesdays all seats are $5.

PENSACOLA MUSEUM OF ART
The Pensacola Museum of Art, in conjunction with Pensacola Young Professionals, present Culture Club, a monthly social event for mixing and mingling amid the atmosphere of the visual and performing arts. Culture Club includes wine, beer and hors d’oeuvres along with live music and art work by featured artists each month. Held the first Thursday of each month at the Pensacola Museum of Art, attendance is free but RVSP is requested. Events are 5-7:30 p.m.
In addition, entrance to the museum is next to nothing:

Members: Free
Children Under 5: Free
Adults: $5
Students with ID: $2
Military with ID: $2

Visit pensacolamuseumofart.org for events, exhibition schedules and more.

PENSACOLA STATE COLLEGE
Classically trained musician and visionary John T. Venettozzi created Pensacola State College’s Lyceum Series in 1958. His goal was to draw programs of cultural and educational value to the greater Pensacola community as well as the college.
A Lyceum season includes a mélange of renowned poets, vocalists, musicians, Broadway plays and musicals, concerts, visual arts, dance and student recitals.
And you can experience all of it for a nominal fee, and PSC students can enjoy for free:
General public: $11
Seniors 60+, children and non-Pensacola State College students: $9
Pensacola State College staff/faculty/retirees and Senior Club members: $7
Pensacola State College students with current ID: One free admission ticket for each Lyceum event
Summer shows: $15 for all tickets

Visit pensacolastate.edu/lyceum for a schedule of upcoming events.

In addition, The Anna Lamar Switzer Center for Visual Arts has a national reputation for quality exhibitions, a strong contemporary collection, plus noteworthy publications and events such asworkshops and visiting artists. The exhibition schedule is also part of the college’s Lyceum Series. All exhibitions are open to the public and free of charge.
For further information, call the gallery at 484-2563.

SILVER SCREEN THEATRE

See first-run movies at a fraction of the cost while taking advantage of their full bar and food menu. (Even their evening shows are cheap.) Silver Screen has plenty of specials to keep you entertained on a budget.

Here are some of our favorites:

Shows starting before 6 p.m.: $4.50
Shows starting after 6 p.m.: $6.50
Tuesdays: All shows 2-for-1
Special Late Nite Classics: $3
Dinner and a movie: $12

For additional specials check out silverscreentheatre.com.

Mark your calendar with these other free cultural events:

Art in the Park
Each spring, artintheparkpensacola.com

Art Night on the Bayfront
Last Wednesday of each month, 4:30-sunset, artnightonthebayfront.com

Gallery Nights
Friday, Sept. 16
Friday, Oct. 21
Friday, Nov. 18
downtownpensacola.com

Gulf Breeze Arts Festival
March 10-11, 2012, gulfbreezearts.org

Greater Gulf Coast Arts Festival
Nov. 4-6, ggaf.org

Music

Find free live entertainment at the following venues whatever your taste in music or scene—no cover charge required.

Pensacola

Big Easy Tavern, 710 N. Palafox, 429-0045 or bigeasytavern.com.
Bimini Beach Bar, Portofino Boardwalk, 400 Quietwater Beach Road, 934-4747.
End of the Line Café, 610 E. Wright St., 429-0336 or eotlcafe.com.
The Fish House Deck Bar, 600 S. Barracks St. 470-0003 or goodgrits.com.
Five Sisters Blues Café, 421 W. Belmont St. 912-4856 or fivesistersbluescafe.com.
Hopjacks Pizza Kitchen & Taproom, 10 S. Palafox. 497-6073 or hopjacks.com.
Hub Stacey’s at The Point, 5851 Galvez Road, 497-0071 or hubstaceys.com.
Hub Stacey’s Downtown, 312 E. Government St., 469-1001 or hubstaceys.com.
Intermission, 214 S. Palafox. 433-6208.
The Leisure Club, 126 S. Palafox, 912-4229 or tlcdowntown.com.
Mellow Mushroom, 5175 Bayou Blvd., 475-7575 or mellowmushroom.net/pensacola.
The Oar House, 1000 S. Pace Blvd. 549-4444 or the-oar-house.com.
Ragtyme Grille, 201 S. Jefferson St. 429-9655 or ragtyme.net.

Pensacola Beach

Bamboo Willie’s, Portofino Boardwalk, 400 Quietwater Beach Road. 916-9888 or bamboowillies.com.
Break Beach Bar, 65 Via de Luna Drive, 932-0864, breakbeachbar.com.
Crab’s We Got’Em, 6 Casino Beach Blvd., 932-0700, crabswegotem.com.
Flounder’s Chowder House, 800 Quietwater Beach Road, 932-2003 or flounderschowderhouse.com.
The Grand Marlin, 400 Pensacola Beach Blvd. 677-9153 or thegrandmarlin.com.
Islander, 43 Via de Luna Drive, 932-9011.
Laguna’s, Portofino Boardwalk, 400 Quietwater Beach Road, 934-5999.
Landshark Landing at Margaritaville Beach Hotel, 165 Fort Pickens Road. 916-9755 or margaritavillehotel.com.
Paddy O’ Leary’s Irish Pub, 49 Via de Luna Drive. 916-9808 or paddyolearysirishpub.com.
Paradise Bar & Grill, 21 Via de Luna Drive. 916-5087 or paradisebar-grill.com.
Peg Leg Pete’s, 1010 Fort Pickens Road. 932-4139 or peglegpetes.com.
Sabine Sandbar, 715 Pensacola Beach Blvd. 934-3141 or dalesbigdeck.com.
Sandshaker Lounge, 731 Pensacola Beach Blvd. 932-2211 or sandshaker.com.
Tiki Stage at the Pool, Margaritaville Beach Hotel, 165 Fort Pickens Road. 916-9755 or margaritavillehotel.com.

Get Fit for Free

There’s no need to pack on the pounds now that you’re back at school. Check out some of these free local workouts that will keep you trim without breaking the bank.

8.27
FREE WORKOUT WITH FIXED ON FITNESS PERDIDO 7 a.m. Get your fix for free with Fixed on Fitness. All fitness levels are invited to join FOF for a workout on Saturday, Aug. 27. Bring a full-size towel and a water bottle with you to the workout. All participants should arrive at least 10 minutes before the workout begins. Please contact FOF Perdido Trainer Troy Ulshoeffer at (319) 759-4560 or troy@fixedonfitness.com for more information. Liberty Church Field, 2221 S. Blue Angel Parkway.

10.8-11.12
FREE POWER YOGA FOR RUNNERS 12:30-1:15 p.m. Fridays from Oct. 8 to Nov. 12. Class will help with breathing technique, increase strength, increase flexibility and complement endurance training. Free, just bring a mat. Running Wild, 3012 E. Cervantes St. 435-9222 or werunwild.com.

SAME TIME SAME PLACE

AT RUNNING WILD
Check out Running Wild’s free trigger point class on Thursdays from 12:30-1:15 p.m. Bring your Trigger Point Total Kit or borrow theirs for a 45-minute deep tissue therapy class. Running Wild, 3012 E. Cervantes St. 435-9222 or werunwild.com.

ON TV
Get a workout without even leaving the house. Barbara Bruni, owner of Pilates Core Training in Pensacola, has a local TV show, “Pilates Core Training”, which airs on UWF-TV, Cox Cable Channel 4, Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 8:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.

FREE LOCAL RUNNING CLUBS
Make it easier to stick to your exercise regimen by running with a group. They’ll keep you on track, whether you’re a novice or marathon runner—and you won’t have to spend a penny.

Monday:
Seville Quarter Milers 5:30 p.m.130 E. Government St. 434-6211 or sevillequarter.com.
Marlin Milers 6 p.m. The Grand Marlin, 400 Pensacola Beach Blvd. 677-9153.

Tuesday:
Running Wild 6 a.m. Six at Six. Six mile-route for various abilities from a 10 minute per mile pace and faster. 3012 E. Cervantes St.  435-9222 or werunwild.com.
McGuire’s Runners 6 p.m. McGuire’s Irish Pub, 600 E. Gregory St. mcguiresrunners.com.

Wednesday:
Capt’N Fun Runners 6 p.m. Distance from 3 to 10 miles. Pace varies. Quietwater Boardwalk, Pensacola Beach. captnfun.net.

Thursday:
Running Wild 6 a.m. Six at Six. Six mile-route for various abilities from a 10 minute per mile pace and faster. 3012 E. Cervantes St. 435-9222 or werunwild.com.

Friday:
Running Wild 9:30 a.m. Beginning Aug. 26. Phat Girlz. Women only, all abilities running group. 3012 E. Cervantes St. 435-9222 or werunwild.com.

Saturday:
Running Wild 6 a.m. Long run. 8-20 miles, supported hydration stops, marked courses, and pace leaders. 3012 E. Cervantes St. 435-9222 or werunwild.com.