Lunch and dinner
2810 East Battlefield Road
Every now and then you’ve just got to munch down at a pizza buffet. Breadeaux Pizza offers pizza, pasta, soup, salad, and several desserts for less than $6.
2002 South Campbell Avenue
This is some of the best BBQ in town, but it is not known for being cheap unless you go through the drive-through and get the special. The drive-through special is always changing but it is usually a really good deal. A sandwich, drink, and side will be somewhere around $5. To get to the closest Buckingham’s in Springfield take Grand west to Campbell and turn left on Campbell. It will be about a mile down Campbell on the left across from Bass Pro.
Buffalo Wild Wings
Most of the time this place is not a very cheap place to eat, but on some days they have specials. Tuesday is 50 cent traditional wing day. Wednesday and Thursday are 60-cent boneless wings days. Wednesday is 75 cent legs.
601 West Walnut Street
Casper’s is Springfield’s legend for great chili. The decor cannot be beat and must be seen to be appreciated, including the hand-painted menus on the wall. You can get the Frito Pie with tons of cheese with a drink for about $5. Go easy on the Arizona Gunslinger hot sauce your first time there! Arrive BEFORE noon or be prepared to wait in line a long time. (Open Labor Day-Memorial Day.) Cash only!
1950 East Primrose Street
You will find this restaurant several times in this guide. It is a great place to get dessert but it is also good for a meal. The food would be comparable to Applebee’s but about 25 percent less. Take Glenstone south. It’s at the corner of Glenstone and Primrose, a few blocks south of the Battlefield Mall.
319 East Walnut Street
It’s a hole-in the wall, with only a few chairs and a counter where you can eat standing up, but Chicago Cheesesteak offers student discounts. Just show your student ID. Their cheesesteaks are some of the best in town!
Chicago Gyros & Deli
2027 North Glenstone Avenue
This is a great place to get a really good Gyro, but that is not why they are in the cheap and free guide. The best deal that they have is a one topping medium pizza for $5.99 after 5:00 p.m.
All-you-can-eat pretty-decent pizza, salad bar, and dessert for $4.99 In the Food-for-Less shopping center near Battlefield and Campbell.
1715 N. Boonville
Cook’s Kettle is a restaurant that is run by Springfield Victory Mission and helps train students to work in restaurants. Cook’s Kettle is open from 6 am until 1 pm Monday thru Friday. Breakfast buffet $3.50. Lunch Buffet $5.00.
314 West Walnut Street
What?! Isn’t that one of Springfield’s priciest steak houses? Yes it is. But between 4 and 6 each day in their lounge, Flame offers burgers made of freshly ground steak for $3.50, along with a variety of other specials.
431 S Jefferson Ave
Lili’s Diner actually is a good place to eat any meal, but they have some great lunch specials. On “Fifties Fridays”, you get a burger, chips and drink for $2.99. Their homemade pie is outstanding, but not cheap.
1540 South Glenstone Avenue
Pizza! Pizza! You can’t eat it there, but you can carry out $5 pizzas from Little Caesars.
2415 West Division
If you want a real local drive-in experience, take National north to Division, then turn left and keep driving until you’ve passed Kansas Expressway, then start looking for Louie’s Drive-in on the right. There are tables inside for about ten people. Classic drive-in food with daily specials.
603 S. Kimbrough
This is one of the closest pizza places to campus and the pizza is good. You can get a large thin crust for $3.99 or hand-tossed crust for $5.99.
Not to be confused with Papa Johns, Papa Murphy’s is some of the cheapest, highest quality pizza in Springfield. The only catch is that you bake it yourself. Just call in your order, pick up your pizza, bake and then enjoy. With coupons, you can get a large pizza for as little as $5.
943 N. Main
Pappy will sell you BBQ sandwiches that are so big many people are not able to finish them. Pappy’s is a little hole-in-the -wall so when you go there you have to take a close look to find it. The daily special (usually brisket or pulled pork) is around $6. Take National north to Chestnut, left on Chestnut until N. Main and then right to 943 N. Main.
1721 East Seminole Street
A great local place to get a sandwich, chips, and a drink for around $5. If you want to try it make sure you bring cash in your wallet because they do not take plastic or checks.
When you think of Wal-Mart you probably do not think about lunch, but you should. The deli counter at Wal-Mart has chicken strips, potato wedges, fried chicken, fried okra and much more. Usually you can get a lot of food for around $4. There are five Wal-Mart stores in Springfield: north on Glenstone, south on Campbell, north on Kansas, one on Independence at Glenstone, and one west on Sunshine at West Bypass.
Wheat State Pizza
3821 S Campbell Ave
Some of the best pizza in town can be enjoyed inexpensively at the lunch buffet at Wheat State Pizza. Pizza, salad, and drink is only $5.99.
208 W McDaniel Street
You’ve got to get ‘em to go, but Whisler’s Burgers are cheap and tasty (5 burgers for $6!).
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Gas station food
Some people see gas station food as inherently disgusting; others enjoy it as fine cuisine. Here are some local suggestions:
Kum & Go
Kum & Go has a wide selection of food, now including “roller cheese burgers”, which like everything else on the roller grill is “2 for $2".
Casey's General Stores
949 South Grant Avenue
Casey’s has the best gas station pizza around, especially their breakfast pizza. And how about those raspberry/cream cheese flips? Outstanding.
Fast and Friendly
The Fast and Friendly gas station at Chestnut and Main has a wide array of fried treats. Everyday they offer something at 2 for $1 (burritos, hot dogs, etc.). You can’t go wrong.
Route 66 Food Shop
700 N Benton Ave
And, at the corner of Benton and Chestnut, the Route 66 Food Shop not only has fresh kettle corn, but an amazing assortment of entrees. Ever had a deep-fried breakfast burrito? At the Route 66 Food Shop you can.
Places where kids eat free or cheap
Applebee’s – Monday Night (only at the south store - 1855 East Primrose Street)
Backyard Burger – Tuesday Night
Cedars - Tuesday Night
Lone Star – Monday Night
McAllister’s Deli – Tuesday Night
Rib Crib – Daily
Planet Sub – Sunday Night
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These two theaters offer student discounts. Call them for show times and prices.
4005 South Ave.
415 W. College Station
The Palace Theater
2220 West Chesterfield Boulevard
Second-run movies are only $3.00. On the first Monday of the month MSU students get into the late movies for free. Timewarp Tuesdays – All movies, all day are just $1.http://www.palacemovies.com/springfield.html
Moxie Cinema (Indie Films)
431 South Jefferson
You are not likely to see “Little Fockers” at the Moxie, but you are likely to see the films the big theaters ignore. $7 tickets with student ID. $6 for all shows before 5:00 pm and all day Monday. www.moxiecinema.com/
Landers, Vandivort and MSU Theaters
Most shows at all these venues offer discounted tickets to students. The only catch is you must show up a half-hour before the show with a student ID to purchase tickets. The Landers and Vandivort are downtown on Walnut between South and Jefferson.
The (cheap) Live Music scene
Some calendars of music events (including cheap and free concerts) can be found at:
On weekends, often Barnes and Noble and/or Borders bookstores feature live music.
The Front Porch downtown is a (cheap!) coffee house that has lots of free live music. You can access their calendar viawww.thecoredowntown.com/frontporch.html. North on Hammons to Walnut, then left (west) to South. Right (north) on South a half block and you’ll see the Front Porch on the right.
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ABC Used Books
2109 N Glenstone Ave
Any kind of books you might want, really cheap and well-organized. They buy used books, too.
1645 East Kearney Street or 421 East Battlefield Street
Not just a bargain-basement grocery, but one of Europe’s most admired corporations (REALLY!), Aldi’s gives you the best prices for stocking up your room or apartment food stash for very few dollars. Two locations.
3114 West Sunshine Street
This is a great place to get all kinds of cool stuff: camping gear, climbing gear, clothes, tools, pots and pans, canoes, honest-to-goodness military surplus from around the world, and tons of other cool stuff.
Bass Pro Outlet
2011 S Campbell Ave
Bass Pro is the most-visited site in all of Missouri because of all the cool stuff that they have. If you would like some of this cool stuff and do not want to pay full price for it check out the outlet store that is just south of the main store on Campbell.
303 East Battlefield St
You can never be sure exactly what they are going to have, but what they have, according to one student, is “Wal-Mart quality at Dollar Store prices.” Everything from shampoo to furniture.
If you need a short road trip idea, just head to Branson and drive around. It’s cool and it’s nearby. There are a ton of places to eat, shop (three outlet malls) and see shows. Just head south of Springfield on highway 65.
DAV Thrift Store
You can find all sorts of cheap books, clothing, videos, etc. Several locations in town.
Ebenezer Thrift Store
On Saturday, get all the stuff you can fit into a bag for $1. From MSU take Grand west to Kansas, then turn right (north) and head up past I-44 until you see signs pointing to Ebenezer, then follow them.
659 West Sunshine Street
Except for Valentine’s Day, you can get a dozen wrapped roses at Flowerama for less than $15. Even on Valentine’s they are cheaper than anywhere else and they are nice roses. Other flowers are available at inexpensive prices.
Food for Less
313 East Battlefield Street
It’s really true. Pretty amazing deals on food. Just east of Campbell on Battlefield.
Joe’s Tire Shop Inc.
1927 W Division St
At some point in your college career you will most likely need new tires. Joe’s is a good place to start because if they have what you need you will get a great price.
410 West University Street
If you are looking for tools or musical instruments this is a place where you might be able to find a good deal. The thing that you have to remember is the price written on the tag is not set; everything is negotiable in a pawn shop.
Ralph Foster Museum
This is located on the campus of the College of the Ozarks which is in Point Lookout, just south of Branson. It houses the original car from the Beverly Hillbillies and has a large gun collection among many other things. Admission is $4.50. Open Monday-Saturday, 9-4:30.
Redeemed Music and Books
4140 South National Avenue
Redeemed has a good range of inexpensive books, plus CDs and videos. If you get a valued customer card everything is always 15 percent off.
Smart Buy Tire
1045 South Campbell Avenue
If you own a car, eventually it will need some work. The guys at Smart Buy Tire are honest and reasonable. They will get you back on the road as inexpensively as anyone in town.
Yes, Springfield does have public transportation, but no, not many people use it. Too bad. It is safe, cheap and fairly easy to figure out. Check out their web site at http://www.cityutil.com/services/ser_transport.htm
Victory Vintage Thrift Store
824 West Commercial Street
Help the homeless by buying vintage clothing and other cool stuff.
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