Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Summer Fun - Favorite Things to Do

Today's topic: Favorite Things to do in the Summer

My favorite things to do in the summer always involve my children. While I have three active Scouts, we typically have a summer filled with camping, hiking, fishing, swimming and all sorts of outdoor activities. The school where my kids attend also offers summer programs. There are trips to the local vocational school where they attend workshops and learn new skills. And every year, I enroll my kids in swimming lessons. I love watching them glow with pride at the new abilities they learn as they advance through the levels. I call them my little fish, although my daughter argues that she's a mermaid.

Our amusement park of choice is Knoebels Grove. With free admission and free parking, you can't really go wrong here. Pay only for the rides you want to go on or buy an all day pass. Set in a beautiful shady grove, it provides a much needed respite from the summer sun and heat. There's rides for all ages. I've been going here since I was a kid. My favorite is still the Haunted House!

I've become an expert at searching the local community websites for free or low cost activities. With four kids, prices always add up. Lucky for us, there are many fun things to do.

There's a movie theater that offers $1 days. There are low cost craft activities at some of the local stores. With enough searching, I found free tours at nearby museums. There are also some battlefields that are close, such as Gettysburg, where the kids and I can walk and learn about history. I'm also quite knowledgeable about the local ghost activity which is fun to talk about with the kids. When they're older, I'd love to take them on some ghost tours!

I also love attending Native American Pow-wows. There are always a few scheduled nearby. Some are free, some are a low admission. Then we spend the day watching the dancers, listening to the music, talking to the people and admiring their crafts and other items. There's usually some games. Throwing a tomahawk is fun! I'm a natural. And then there's the dancing. My kids and I often dance within the circle with the other dancers. My favorite part of the event!

Do you know what my kid's favorite activity is in the summer? The one thing they ask for again and again?

A picnic.

That's it.

I took them on a picnic a couple of years ago in a park near a covered bridge not far from my home. It was an impromptu event. We were in the area doing some shopping and we were hungry. Instead of sitting in a crowded restaurant, we grabbed some food through the drive-thru and settled on a picnic bench in a peaceful park with huge trees and a river flowing beneath the old covered bridge. It was a tranquil, lovely summer day.

And my kids continue to mention it every summer.

So, a simple picnic is a must. We've done this lots of times now. Usually, it's at a park with a walking path of sorts, so we'll eat our food on a bench or a table if there's one or we'll grab a blanket from the car and settle on the grass. After we're done eating, we talk a walk and enjoy nature.

I always look forward to summer because the kids are home from school. We don't have all the homework or tests to study for. Everyone can relax and just enjoy life.

Happy Reading!

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  1. We have a lot in common! I prefer free/low-cost events, too, and hiking and picnics are definitely my idea of a good time.

    It's cool that you have an amusement part in your area that doesn't charge admission for visiting it. How much does the average ride there cost?

    My post.

    1. If I remember from last year, depending on the ride, between one to two dollars. Usually I'll buy a book of tickets, anywhere between fifty to a hundred dollars and then the kids split them. When we run out of tickets, we go home. Every year, we end up bringing a few tickets home and we'll save them to use for next year.

  2. Finding low-cost activities for the summer is a big thing for us, too - especially as Beautiful Wife and I both work full time. I'm kicking myself for not having signed the boys up for more summer camps, because most of them are full now...

  3. I used to love amusement parks, bu they've got more and more expensive. Picnics, on the other hand, I can go with.

  4. The Native American Pow-wows would be a neat experience to witness.