Now, Morgan Hill might seem podunk to some, a bit old-fashioned maybe, or even worse, a haven for the stucco mansion-loving elite, but for those with an eye for bargains, Morgan Hill has some serious potential--with bargains that mean no money down or no money ever. So, if you've got no change rattling around because there's a hole in your pocket and feel like heading into the wide-open spaces south of the valley, there will always be free entertainment at Morgan Hill. You can even mingle with the locals for free.
1. Meet Real Farmers
It'll only cost you money if you want to buy something. But enjoy the experience free of charge by strolling through fresh selections of fruits, vegetables, flowers and eats in historic downtown Morgan Hill. It takes places Saturday mornings through October on Depot and Third Street. The market lasts from 9am to 1pm.
2. Get Out on a Friday Night
Park yourself in downtown Morgan Hill any Friday night until Sept. 26 and keep your summer nights grooving with free live music. The series boast a different band every Friday, and it's an event you can bring your family to. The series is presented by Vision Morgan Hill, a not-for-profit organization. Music starts at 7pm and ends at 9pm.
3. Watch 'Em Go Up, Up and Away
Now, it'll cost you a few pennies if you want to take a ride up through the big, blue sky in a balloon, but you can do the next best thing absolutely free. If you have the self-determination to be at Golden Oak Restaurant in Morgan Hill (or South County Airport in San Martin) at sunrise--about 6am these days--you can watch Aerostation's balloons lift off and up. It's become quite an event in Morgan Hill. Call 408.778.9722 for more information.
4. Listen to the Woodwinds
Are you musically inclined? But cheap? If you answered yes to both these questions, check out the Morgan Hill Wind Symphony, self-described as "a symphonic organization open to local musicians who might be looking for an outlet for their musical talents, or a place to dust off old skills." Or you can just watch. Rehearsals are held at the Morgan Hill Presbyterian Church, 16970 DeWitt Ave. on Wednesdays at 7:30pm. All are welcome.
5. Save the Kitties
This one is for the do-gooders out there. Town Cats of Morgan Hill is a no-kill feline adoption center/shelter and a feral cat advocacy organization. Its mission is to save the lives of homeless cats and kittens that are awaiting adoption by giving them loving care and a place to stay. Anyone wishing to visit the center can do so, free of charge, seven days a week, by appointment. If you go so far as wanting to adopt a cat, you can get even more free stuff--including free pet insurance for two months and perhaps free spay and neuter programs. Contact them at 408.779.5761.
6. Free Your Mind
Twice a month, the Morgan Hill Library holds a book discussion group for the intellectually acute. The discussion group convenes the last Monday and the last Friday of each month in the library. Read at least some of the selected book before you come. The discussion usually lasts around an hour. Copies of the book for the month are provided to check out, and anyone can attend. For more information, call 408.779.3196.
7. Pick a Park
Edmundson Avenue and Gavivan Park, on Crest Avenue, Morgan Hill
8. Toro, Toro, Toro
This is, of course, the landmark Morgan Hill was built around. Its silhouette has been incorporated into the city's logo. El Toro, besides being Morgan Hill's logo, also has hiking trails winding up it. For free, hikers can climb to the peak and enjoy a view of the sun setting from above.
9. Who Was Morgan, Anyway?
Next to the library on West Main Ave.; 408.779.5755
Gilroy Garlic Festival
Marie Callendar's Morgan Hill