Want to get out of the house and do something new? These cheap or free tours will teach you more about the history surrounding North Canton, OH, while also giving you free chocolate or a cruise in a canal boat.

1. Fannie May/Harry London Chocolate Tour


Image via Flickr by EverJean

This free tour takes school groups and families on a forty-five minute journey through the factory, starting with the story of how the cocoa bean is transformed into delicious chocolate with the help of a little sugar and cream.

People who take the tour can watch row after row of sweets pass under a curtain of chocolate and can watch how artisan chefs create masterful gourmet designs using airbrushing techniques and chocolate molds. You can enjoy some free samples, too, and peruse the old-timey candy store to pick up some candies to take home.

2. Hoover Historical Center


Image via Flickr by maccath

Located on the original Hoover farm, the center takes viewers through a history of the Hoover company. Visitors will see the types of cleaning devices that came and went from the turn of the century until World War II.

Set in the Hoovers’ beautiful Victorian home, the tour includes original Hoover home furnishings, the original 1908 Hoover vacuum, and various ladies’ fashions in addition to original ads, items from World War II, and other interactive displays. The tour is free, as is the festive Christmas Open House and Summer Storytelling events. There is also a Summer Garden Tea and Unique Boutique fundraiser where volunteers will take you on a tour through the beautiful gardens that fill up the surrounding land.

3. MAPS Air Museum


Image via Flickr by 5chw4r7z

The MAPS Air Museum received TripAdvisor’s certificate of excellence reward in 2013 and the 2012 Beacon’s Best award for its high-quality attractions and exhibits. Younger visitors will love how they can touch many of the exhibited planes, and adults will enjoy the rich history of the planes and military uniforms that the MAPS volunteers have displayed.

And you aren’t just looking at the refurbished planes. Tours also take visitors to view planes that are in the middle of being deconstructed and restored. Many people recommend that you give yourself a whole afternoon to take in everything this museum has to offer. One of the best parts of the museum? The friendly and knowledgeable staff and guides.

4. St Helena III Canal Boat Ride


Image via Flickr by MrTin.DC

Enjoy the unique experience of a one-hour boat ride on the Ohio and Erie Canals. While the historian on board can delve into the important history of the canals and surrounding area, nothing can beat the experience of cruising down the canal via a replica of a historical canal boat.

The Canal Fulton Canal Center is a great place to learn more about things to do in the area and to view the free video presentation on the important heritage of the canal. You can also reserve the boat for a themed cruise or a private group charter.

What are some of your favorite, frugal family outings in North Canton? Share your thoughts in the comments below.