It's like watching your favorite cooking show on the Food Network, but getting to magically reach inside the TV to grab a taste.
Johnny Funcheap runs FunCheapSF.com, a free San Francisco-based service that uncovers and shares a hand-picked recommendation list of upwards of 50 cheap, fun, unique Bay Area events each week.
FIVE FREE THINGS TO DISCOVER IN SF
Urban adventures don't have to cost money
By Broke-Ass Stuart
Although wasting a day in Dolores Park or purposefully misdirecting tourists might be great way to have some free fun, anything can get redundant after a while. That's why I put together this list of amazing free things to discover in San Francisco. Whether you've been here your whole life or just landed today, you're bound to find something entertaining on this list.
The Wave Organ at the end of the jetty extending past the Golden Gate Yacht club in the Marina. It's not bellowing quite like it used to, but the Wave Organ is a perfect particle of San Francisco's quirkiness. Built by the Exploratorium, the Wave Organ consists of 25 PVC pipes of various lengths jutting through concrete into the bay below. The sounds it makes depend on the height of the tide.
The Seward Street Slides at Seward and Douglass streets in the Castro District. Cardboard: free. Concrete slides: free. Getting bloody scrapes from combo of cardboard and concrete slides: priceless. The two concrete chutes are constructed so that when you get to the top and sit on a piece of cardboard, you slide down. Bring wax paper for even greater velocity.
The Xanadu Gallery at 140 Maiden Lane. If you're excited about free stuff, chances are you can't afford anything in this gallery. But looking around is free and awesome! Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright at the same time that he was doodling the Guggenheim, Xanadu Gallery (built as the VC Morris Gift Shop), has a remarkably similar interior to its New York City cousin seemingly devoid of right angles and full of curving ramps. I'd pay so much money to see Tony Hawk go to town in here.
The Tiled Steps and Grand View Park, 16th Avenue at Moraga. Bring your sweetie and climb the lovely 163 tiled steps. Stop at the top and breathe a bunch. Then climb the next set of stairs to the right, and the ones after that. Now you're in Grand View Park. Breathe a bunch more while checking out the staggering view. Smooching at the top is optional (but excellent).
The Jejune Institute, 580 California, Suite 1607,. Imagine if Lost took place in San Francisco. But instead of wandering the jungle dodging weird smoke monsters and "the others," you could explore the city in ways you never imagined. The JeJune Institute is kinda like that, only better. I don't want to ruin anything for you, so all I'm gonna say is go there with a couple free hours, a cell phone, and $1.10 (not technically free but seriously the best $1.10 you'll ever spend). The Jejune Institute blew my mind so hard that the top of my skull still flaps in the wind.
If you like cheap stuff, check out BrokeAssStuart.com.
Let the students practice on your head
By Mayka Mei
Has anyone ever said you have a great face for hair modeling? Volunteering as a hair model gives salon trainees a chance to fulfill all their requirements for becoming full-time stylists. True, salons have become more guarded about their freebies, sometimes nixing the programs altogether. But a few freebies are still out there.
A few caveats: you'll need an open, available schedule. Some salons have casting calls or will screen you for certain characteristics online or over the phone.