Free Winter Events and Activities in the St. Louis Area

You don't have to spend money in St. Louis, Missouri, to enjoy a lot of what the city has to offer. Many top attractions are free, and there are special free events and activities throughout the year. 

Learn about history and science at the museums, watch eagles and movies, too. And in winter, watch the ice carvers at work and go to the ice carnival. 

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Missouri History Museum

Missouri History Museum in St. Louis
Deborah O'Brien

The Missouri History Museum is ​free to explore and visit year-round. Every season, the museum curates a new exhibit. Continuing exhibits include the 1904 World's Fair, which was hosted in St. Louis, History Clubhouse, an exhibit for children, and "Seeking St. Louis," which tells of the story of St. Louis through photos.

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Star Party at the Science Center

James S. McDonnell Planetarium
Philip Leara / Flickr / Public Domain

Admission to the Saint Louis Science Center is free for everyone. The only exception is special exhibits. On the first Friday of each month, there is also a free "Star Party" at the planetarium. Members of the St. Louis Astronomical Society set up telescopes for public viewing of the night sky and are available to answer questions.

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Eagle Meet and Greets

Bald Eagles
© David O'Brien

You can drive along the Great River Road near Alton almost any time in the winter and see bald eagles, but there are also special free Eagle Meet and Greet events on selected weekends at the TreeHouse Wildlife Center in Dow.

Free admission. Coffee, hot chocolate, and cookies will be available. Donations are appreciated. 

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Free Family Sundays at the Art Museum

Saint Louis Art Museum
Courtesy of the Saint Louis Art Museum / Photo by Robert Pettus

The Saint Louis Art Museum welcomes families for free events each Sunday afternoon. Family Sundays run from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The event includes kid-friendly, hands-on art projects, and a lively, 30-minute tour of the exhibits at 2:30 p.m.

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Loop Ice Carnival

Delmar Loop Ice Festival
Delmar Loop

Residents and businesses in the Delmar Loop celebrate the best of winter each year at the Loop Ice Carnival. The carnival is a full day of free, family-friendly events including ice carving, an ice slide, putt-putt pub crawl, human sled dog races, and much more.​

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Eagle Watching

Eagle Watching
Trailnet / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Missouri's winter eagle watching is spectacular. The Missouri Department of Conservation hosts Eagle Days during the winter. If you can’t make it to one of the Eagle Days events, you can go to Old Chain of Rocks Bridge in St. Louis from late December through early February to watch for eagles perched in large trees along the water’s edge. Get out early in the morning to see the eagles flying and fishing.

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Free Movies at Ballpark Village

Ballpark Village St. Louis Movie Monday
Ballpark Village St. Louis

Once a month during the winter, Ballpark Village shows a free family-friendly movie on the indoor 40-foot screen at Fox Sports Midwest Live! TV. Saint Louis' Ballpark Village is a dining and entertainment district adjacent to Busch Stadium where the St. Louis Cardinals play in downtown St. Louis, occupying the site of the previous Busch Stadium.

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Free Family Nights at the Magic House

Magic House St Louis
Dtjrh2 / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0

St. Louis' top children's museum, The Magic House, has free admission for families on the third Friday of the month from 5-8 p.m. Since it opened in 1979, the museum gives children hands-on learning experiences that spark imagination, pique curiosity, enhance creativity, and develop problem-solving skills within a place of beauty, wonder, joy, and magic.

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Third Friday at Third Degree

Third Degree Glass Factory
Third Degree Glass Factory

Third Degree Glass Factory hosts a free open house on the third Friday of each month. There are glassblowing demonstrations, art exhibits, live music, and more. For a fee, you can sculpt glowing molten glass into a paperweight; melt glass rods through a torch to craft beautiful beads and add them to a bracelet, keychain, or necklace pendant; or cut and layer pieces of glass to create jewelry, wine charms, bug magnet, glass tile, or a nightlight. Food and drinks are also available for purchase. The event runs from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

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SLAM Underground

Saint Louis Art Museum
Saint Louis Art Museum

The Saint Louis Art Museum hosts a free event on the last Friday of each month. Head for the museum on the final Friday of the month for the latest installment of SLAM Underground. You can expect art, music, and cocktails. Tickets are required. You can pick up free tickets near the museum's information desk.

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Fete De Glace

Fete De Glace
Fete de Glace

Professional carvers turn blocks of ice into works of art during the Fete De Glace along Main Street in St. Charles usually held at the end of January. The crowd then picks the winners. There are also fire pits, coffee, and hot chocolate to warm you up.

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Make Maple Syrup

Maple Syrup
Missouri Department of Conservation

February is maple sugaring season in Missouri due to the weather conditions, which provide the right combination of below-freezing temperatures at night and above-freezing temperatures during the day.

Make your own maple syrup at the maple syrup classes at Rockwoods Reservation in Wildwood. Workers with the Missouri Department of Conservation show visitors how to find sugar maple trees, tap them, and boil the sap to make syrup.

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Not So Quiet! Concert Series

St. Louis Central Library
 Deborah O'Brien

The Central Library in downtown St. Louis hosts free monthly concerts. The Not So Quiet! concert series features popular local performers from all styles of music: blues, jazz, rap, swing, R&B, folk, to name a few. The concerts are held in the library's auditorium on the third Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. Seating is first come-first served, no reservations required. 

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