A family outing in Boca Raton: making the most out of a tight budget (includes audio story)

When my mother, Jessica Pecker, is asked what her ideal Saturday night of fun looks like, money is out of the question. 

She and her three kids have mastered the art of people-watching in an expense-free (besides the gas) weekly outing to Mizner Park, a hub for the arts, culture, food, shopping, and nightlife in Boca Raton.

She says her average Saturday night involves cruising through the promenade of this special place. Lively bars, the local art museum, and various bustling shops line this jovial spot.

Pecker rarely follows the crowd, however. Instead, she watches from the sidelines in her Hyundai SUV with the bass kicked up, blasting oldies like the music of Barry White, the Bee Gees, or Marvin Gaye as she shouts the words along with her kids.

“Driving around with my kids, we look for a good radio station with usually oldies music.” she gushes. “We drive around and put the windows all down and watch people walking by.”

When money is tight, sometimes simply observing the hubbub of the expensive nightlife has an incomparable feeling. Jessica Pecker and her family have made a tradition of it.

Hear it in her words below.

Correction: an earlier version of this story incorrectly spelled Jessica Pecker’s name.

Jacqueline Pecker is an Honors College student at FIU majoring in Digital Communication and Media. She employs her skills in TV production, video editing, writing, public speaking, and the arts in her current position as a social media coordinator and writing tutor for Palm Beach State College. Pecker aspires to work as a multimedia specialist at a media and entertainment company and is making the most of her college experience by seeking various hands-on, media-related opportunities.