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Summertime Fun Blowout

Summertime Fun BlowoutBy Jennifer Norris

The idea behind summer vacation is to rest … and be outside as much as possible. But as those warm days start to dwindle away, it’s time to squeeze all the fun you can in before the hustle and bustle of the school year begins. Enjoy the weather, new experiences, and each other. Here are some ideas.

Catch a movie, outside. Those late summer nights offer the perfect opportunity to see a double-header at the drive-in or set up a movie in your own backyard. Sprawl out blankets and pillows and remember the popcorn and candy.

Rent a bounce house for the day. Nothing starts a neighborhood kid block party like setting up a bounce house on the front lawn. Local, affordable dealers allow all-day rental, set up, and take-away for the price of a nice family meal.

Buy a membership. Theme parks. Water parks. Zoos. Pools. Popular local attractions offer discounted admission through memberships. Go for a couple hours every day or all day on the weekends.

Set out on a road trip. This country is crisscrossed with iconic day-trips. Find a spot that your family has never seen and load up the car. Research attractions, restaurants, and events to visit during your stay, whether it’s overnight or over the weekend.

Start a garden. Plant now to sow fall produce like squash, greens, and beets. Find out what grows best in your area and be sure to research tried and true gardening tips from the experts.

Plan a unique progressive dinner. Include a favorite spot from everyone in the family. Appetizer’s at mom’s favorite bistro, include dad’s favorite steakhouse, and don’t forget the dessert.

Take in a full series. A summertime baseball game can be a hot experience, but chances are, your favorite MLB team has a nighttime series happening at home during the last month of summer. Take in every game and don’t forget your mitt.

Go on a tour. Tour your own city’s landmarks, local museum’s notable works, or downtown’s architecture. Whatever your child’s interest is, take an interest, too, and show her what her town has to offer.

Pitch a tent. More than likely, a national park is located a short drive from where you live. Visit the National Park Service website to find one near you as well as information and camping tips. Pack up the supplies and head out to discover national history and to explore nature.

Take a class. What might seem to go against the idea of summer vacation is actually a great opportunity. Ask your kid to name one thing they wish they knew how to do, and then book the class. Guitar lessons, cooking, sewing, tennis, horseback riding, individual courses, or summer-long lessons; the time off from school gives your child the ability to focus on one interest.

Host an end-of-the-summer barbecue. All good things come to an end; send the summer off with a summertime bash. Grill some food, put some drinks on ice, and gather your favorite friends, family, and neighbors. And take a deep breath … school’s about to start.