Plenty to do for free in St Augustine and St Johns County

For Historic City News readers, from music, to history, tours and attractions, there’s plenty to do for free in St Augustine to make your visit in August and September super easy.

  • Fort Matanzas National Monument. The Spanish built Fort Matanzas, a small fortified watchtower, to guard the southern entrance to St. Augustine. 8635 A1A Hwy. S., St Augustine 904-471-0116 www.nps.gov/foma
  • Fort Mose Historic State Park is the first free African settlement in North America. Though nothing remains of the fort, the site and visitor center memorialize the slaves who fled the American colonies. Admission to the park grounds is free. The grounds are open daily from 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., 365 days a year. 15 Fort Mose Trail, St. Augustine 904-823-2232 www.FloridaStateParks.org/fortmose
  • The Governor’s House Cultural Center and Museum gallery hosts rotating exhibits that are free and open during regular business hours. A lobby exhibit explains the rich history of Government House and its prominent location in the St. Augustine historic district. Open to the public daily from 10 a.m. -5 p.m. 48 King St., St. Augustine 904-823-2240 www.staugustine.ufl.edu
  • Historic church tours including Flagler Memorial Presbyterian Church, Mission Nombre de Dios and Cathedra Basilica. Check church schedules for tour days and times.
  • San Sebastian Winery free tours and tastings daily from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays. 157 King St., St. Augustine 904-826-1594 www.sansebastianwinery.com
  • The TPC Clubhouse is a Mediterranean-style clubhouse at TPC Sawgrass, the majestic centerpiece for the club, providing PGA Tour standard hospitality to its members and visitors alike. Free daily tours are open to visitors. 110 Championship Way, Ponte Vedra Beach 904-273-3235 www.tpc.com
  • Each Wednesday through Labor Day Music by the Sea Concert
    Celebrating its 17th season, this free weekly concert series at the St. Johns County Pier Park features a wide variety of musical genres from 7-9 p.m. Bring a beach chair or blanket. Starting at 6 p.m., dinner is offered as an option for concert goers. All dinners are priced at $10 or less. Concert goers are encouraged to car pool or ride the shuttle from St. Augustine Beach City Hall. 350 A1A Beach Blvd., St. Augustine Beach 904-347-8007 www.freebeachconcerts.com
  • Each Thursday through August 31 Concert in the Plaza
    From 7-9 p.m. every Thursday night through August 31, enjoy a live free concert under the oak trees in St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitución. Bring a chair or blanket for seating. Visit the website for the entertainment schedule. Corner of Cathedral Pl. and King St., St. Augustine 904-825-1004 www.citystaug.com/concerts
  • First Friday – Art Walk
    From 5-9 p.m. on the first Friday of every month, the Art Galleries of St. Augustine feature new exhibits, refreshments and live music at more than 20 galleries. The event is held rain or shine inside the member galleries and is a free, self-guided walking tour (tour maps available at participating galleries). 832-779-2781 www.artgalleriesofstaugustine.org
  • First Saturday – Militia Muster and Training at Fort Mose
    Visit Fort Mose on the first Saturday of each month from 9-11:30 a.m. to be transported back to the 18th century. Learn from the members of the Fort Mose Militia as they practice firing drills and demonstrate how to use historic weapons. The park is open from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Admission into the park is free. Admission into the Visitor Center is $2 per person. 15 Fort Mose Trail, St. Augustine 904-823-2232 www.floridastateparks.org/park/fort-mose
  • Second Saturday – Free St. Augustine Pet Walk Pup Crawl
    Explore the timeless streets of St. Augustine with your beloved pets. This free, one-hour guided walking tour covers several square blocks of the downtown plaza area. All pets must be leashed and all city pet ordinances followed. Tour departs at 10 a.m. from Tour Saint Augustine office. Reservations required. 4 Granada St., St. Augustine 904-825-0087 www.staugcitywalks.com
  • Third Saturday – Tolomato Cemetery Guided Tour
    Tour the oldest extant planned cemetery in Florida with burials starting during the First Spanish Period (1565-1763). Admission is free; donations encouraged. Tours are from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. 14 Cordova St., St. Augustine 904-257-3273 www.tolomatocemetery.com
  • Third Saturday – Black Heritage & Civil Rights Free Walking Tour
    You are invited to join St. Augustine Black Heritage Tours for a free walking tour of historical sites in St. Augustine where more than 400 years of African American history live. You will also visit Lincolnville, established by freedmen following the American Civil War, which is now on the National Register of Historic Places. This 1.5-hour tour departs from Tour Saint Augustine at 4 p.m. Advance reservations required; individual bookings only. 4 Granada St., St. Augustine 904-825-0087 www.staugustineblackheritagetours.com
  • Last Saturday – Uptown Saturday
    Uptown Saturday is the perfect event for fashionistas, art lovers and antique shoppers from 11 a.m.-8 p.m. on the last Saturday of each month. Uptown Saturday combines a festive party atmosphere with special deals in the unique shops on St. Augustine’s San Marco Avenue. Many participating shops also serve refreshments. The Mission Nombre de Dios provides free parking most months. 904-829-6831 www.facebook.com/uptownstaugustine
  • Fourth Saturday – Free Historic Walking Tour
    History comes alive as you saunter through the narrow brick streets for an up close and personal view of the city. Our licensed, professional guide will relate more than 400 years of St. Augustine’s past during this all-encompassing 1.5-hour history lesson. The tour departs from Tour Saint Augustine at 4 p.m. Advance reservations required. 4 Granada St., St. Augustine 904-825-0087 www.staugcitywalks.com
  • August 17
    Concert in the Plaza
    From 7-9 p.m. every Thursday night through August 31, enjoy a live free concert under the oak trees in St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitución. This week’s band is Ancient City Slickers. Bring a chair or blanket for seating. Visit the website for the entertainment schedule. Corner of Cathedral Pl. and King St., St. Augustine 904-825-1004 www.citystaug.com/concerts
  • August 24
    Concert in the Plaza
    From 7-9 p.m. every Thursday night through August 31, enjoy a live free concert under the oak trees in St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitución. This week’s band is The Gatorbone Band. Bring a chair or blanket for seating. Visit the website for the entertainment schedule. Corner of Cathedral Pl. and King St., St. Augustine 904-825-1004 www.citystaug.com/concerts
  • August 25
    Happy Birthday National Park Service
    It’s the National Park Service’s birthday! Help us celebrate with a visit to the Castillo de San Marcos. Admission is free to the Castillo and all national parks throughout the country. 1 S. Castillo Dr., St. Augustine 904-829-6506 www.nps.gov/casa
  • August 25-September 29
    David Nackashi and Jim Benedict Exhibition
    Experience this exhibition at The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach, which showcases works of David Nackashi and Jim Benedict. Admission is free. The gallery is open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m.- 4 p.m., 50 Executive Way, Ponte Vedra Beach 904-280-0614 www.ccpvb.org
  • August 25-September 29
    Society of Mixed Media Artists Exhibition
    The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach hosts this exhibition, which showcases works of the Society of Mixed Media Artists. Admission is free. The gallery is open Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 50 Executive Way, Ponte Vedra Beach 904-280-0614 www.ccpvb.org
  • August 31
    Concert in the Plaza
    From 7-9 p.m. every Thursday night through August 31, enjoy a live free concert under the oak trees in St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitución. This week’s band is Lonesome Burt and The Skinny Lizards. Bring a chair or blanket for seating. Visit the website for the entertainment schedule. Corner of Cathedral Pl. and King St., St. Augustine 904-825-1004 www.citystaug.com/concerts
  • September 1-October 21
    Gamaliel Rodriguez Exhibition
    This exhibition at the Crisp-Ellert Art Museum features works by Gamaliel Rodriguez. Admission is free. The museum’s hours are Monday-Friday 10 a.m-4 p.m. and Saturday noon-4 p.m. 48 Sevilla St., St. Augustine 904-826-8530 www.flagler.edu/crispellert
  • September 2
    Music in the Park: Summer Concert Series
    Anastasia State Park hosts Music in the Park on select Saturdays each month from May through September. This month, Matt Fowler performs at 6 p.m. at the Island Beach Grill located at the end of the park. Food and beverages are available for purchase. Admission into the park ranges from $8-$2. 300 Anastasia Park Rd., St. Augustine 904-461-2033 www.floridastateparks.org/park/anastasia
  • September 7
    Concert in the Plaza
    From 7-9 p.m. every Thursday night through August 31, enjoy a live free concert under the oak trees in St. Augustine’s Plaza de la Constitución. This week’s band is The Driftwoods. Bring a chair or blanket for seating. Visit the website for the entertainment schedule. Corner of Cathedral Pl. and King St., St. Augustine 904-825-1004 www.citystaug.com/concerts
  • September 8-10, 15 – 17 and 22-24
    Sing Out Loud Music Festival
    The Sing Out Loud Music Festival, the largest free music festival ever held in St. Johns County, returns for three weekends this September. Hundreds of performances will take place at multiple music venues throughout St. Augustine. In a convergence of musical genres as wide ranging as Texas Outlaw Country, New Orleans Brass and Funk, Alternative Indie Rock, Americana, Bluegrass, Neo-Soul, Folk, Punk and more, this year’s Sing Out Loud Music Festival features an eclectic mix of local, national and regional singers, songwriters and musicians. The initial artist lineup includes performances by Steve Earle, Lake Street Dive, Wolf Parade, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Los Lobos, Lucero, Deer Tick, The Infamous Stringdusters, Justin Townes Earle, Langhorne Slim, John Moreland, Lydia Loveless, Matthew Logan Vasquez, Dave Simonett, Joe Pug, Blackfoot Gypsies, Mariee Sioux, Wax Wings, Shelley Short, This Frontier Needs Heroes, Darren Hanlon and more. Visit the website to see a full schedule of performances and events. 904-209-0367 www.singoutloudfestival.com
  • September 15
    First Muster
    The Florida National Guard and Florida Department of Military Affairs in partnership with Florida Living History’s volunteer historical re-enactors commemorate the 452nd anniversary of the first militia mustering of America’s original citizen soldiers in 1565 and the birthday of the U.S. National Guard. The event begins at 4 p.m. at the Florida National Guard’s headquarters in the St. Francis Barracks. Admission is free. 82 Marine St., St. Augustine 877-352-4478 www.floridalivinghistory.org
  • September 15-17 and 22-24
    Sing Out Loud Music Festival
    The Sing Out Loud Music Festival, the largest free music festival ever held in St. Johns County, returns for three weekends this September. Hundreds of performances will take place at multiple music venues throughout St. Augustine. In a convergence of musical genres as wide ranging as Texas Outlaw Country, New Orleans Brass and Funk, Alternative Indie Rock, Americana, Bluegrass, Neo-Soul, Folk, Punk and more, this year’s Sing Out Loud Music Festival features an eclectic mix of local, national and regional singers, songwriters and musicians. The initial artist lineup includes performances by Steve Earle, Lake Street Dive, Wolf Parade, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Los Lobos, Lucero, Deer Tick, The Infamous Stringdusters, Justin Townes Earle, Langhorne Slim, John Moreland, Lydia Loveless, Matthew Logan Vasquez, Dave Simonett, Joe Pug, Blackfoot Gypsies, Mariee Sioux, Wax Wings, Shelley Short, This Frontier Needs Heroes, Darren Hanlon and more. Visit the website to see a full schedule of performances and events. 904-209-0367 www.singoutloudfestival.com
  • September 16
    International Coastal Cleanup
    Join the Ocean Conservancy, Friends of A1A Scenic and Historic Coastal Byway on this international initiative to help clean up the beaches from Flagler Beach to St. Augustine Beach. The event is from 8 a.m.-noon. Everyone is invited and encouraged to participate to make a positive impact on the beaches everywhere. 904-425-8055 www.scenica1a.org
  • September 16-17
    Lincolnville Festival
    This free event celebrates the Lincolnville community, established in 1866, and features live music and dancing, food and drinks, local vendors and fun activities for youth. The event is from 11 a.m.-10 p.m. on Saturday and 1-6 p.m. on Sunday at Eddie Vickers Park. 399 Riberia St., St. Augustine 904-829-3918 www.mylincolnville.com
  • September 19
    Third Tuesday – GTM Research Reserve Marineland Lecture
    This free lecture series is held on the third Tuesday of the month from 10-11 a.m. at Marineland Dolphin Adventure. The series is designed to inform the public about their coastal natural world. The lectures are free. Tickets must be purchased online. Please bring ticket to the Marineland gift shop on the day of the scheduled presentation to gain entry. Please arrive by 9:45 a.m. at the gift shop to be escorted to the classroom. 9600 Oceanshore Blvd., Marineland 904-823-4500 www.gtmnerr.org
  • September 22-24
    Sing Out Loud Music Festival
    The Sing Out Loud Music Festival, the largest free music festival ever held in St. Johns County, returns for three weekends this September. Hundreds of performances will take place at multiple music venues throughout St. Augustine. In a convergence of musical genres as wide ranging as Texas Outlaw Country, New Orleans Brass and Funk, Alternative Indie Rock, Americana, Bluegrass, Neo-Soul, Folk, Punk and more, this year’s Sing Out Loud Music Festival features an eclectic mix of local, national and regional singers, songwriters and musicians. The initial artist lineup includes performances by Steve Earle, Lake Street Dive, Wolf Parade, Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Los Lobos, Lucero, Deer Tick, The Infamous Stringdusters, Justin Townes Earle, Langhorne Slim, John Moreland, Lydia Loveless, Matthew Logan Vasquez, Dave Simonett, Joe Pug, Blackfoot Gypsies, Mariee Sioux, Wax Wings, Shelley Short, This Frontier Needs Heroes, Darren Hanlon and more. Visit the website to see a full schedule of performances and events. 904-209-0367 www.singoutloudfestival.com
  • September 23
    Saturday – Old City Farmers Market
    The Old City Farmers Market features fresh produce, baked goods, seafood, handcrafted items and plants plus live entertainment. The Old City Farmers Market takes place every Saturday from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre. Admission is free. 1340 A1A South, St. Augustine 904-209-0367 www.staugustinefm.com
  • September 23
    Florida Heritage Book Festival
    The Florida Heritage Book Festival annual free day with approximately 20 authors of fiction, non-fiction and youth books will be held at the Ringhaver Student Center at Flagler College. The festival is open to the public 9 a.m.-4 p.m. One-hour presentations with authors, who write about Florida or who write about other topics and live in Florida, will include lively commentary on their books followed by question and answer periods with their audiences. Book signings will follow all presentations. A literary-centric marketplace is also open during the day. The Florida Heritage Book Festival is a non-profit corporation that promotes Florida’s literary heritage and a love of reading. 50 Sevilla St., St. Augustine bobboese@bellsouth.net (link sends e-mail) www.floridaheritagebookfestival.com
  • September 23
    Changing of the Guard
    At 6 p.m., see history come to life when 18th century Spanish soldiers march down St. George Street from the Colonial Quarter to the Governor’s House Cultural Center & Museum where they perform authentic military drills before firing an exciting volley of musketry. The event features the St. Augustine Garrison. 48 King St., St. Augustine 616-990-5456 www.hfm.club/garrison/cog
  • September 30
    National Public Lands Day
    To commemorate National Public Lands Day, a day that promotes enjoyment and volunteer conservation of public lands, admission into the Castillo de San Marcos is free. The park is open from 8:45 a.m.-5 p.m. 1 S. Castillo Dr., St. Augustine 904-829-6506 www.nps.gov/casa

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