I’ve taken the stress out of summer planning and compiled a list of 51 super fun summer activities for families. Whether you work full time and plan your activates with the kids for nights and weekends, work part time and stay at home with the kids the other days, stay at home full time, or are a caregiver, have one kid, two kids, or six kids, there is something on this list for you. These ideas are just as much fun for the adults as the kids too. Just don't try to do them all. Overbooking can lead to a stressful summer. Remember down time for kids to just explore and relax is important too. I've marked activities especially for families with babies with a *. Enjoy!
1. Zoo Trip*
2. Bike Riding-If some of your kids are too little to ride yet get a children's bike trailer for them. Shop Here.
3. Fruit Picking
4. Visit a local fair or festival*
5. Drive In Movie-My 2 year old will not sit for a movie but he loves to play in the car. This is a great way for us to watch a movie together. Some drive in movie places even have a playground.
6. Geocaching-There are millions of geocaches hidden around the world—there are probably some near you right now. Get the free Official Geocaching app and start finding some.
7. Tea Party-Have the kids host a tea party for their Grandmas, Aunts, or Moms friends. The kids can serve.
9. Play Group- Check online to see if your community has any kids play groups. A lot of times you can find a group that does art, music, or other crafts. If you don't find any start your own and invite other Mom's in your area to join.*
10. Nature Walk- Go for a walk on a local trail. Make a list of some things you might see on the walk (birds, leaves, pinecones...) and have the kids try to spot them along the way, like a little scavenger hunt.
11. Camp- If you have younger kids many communities will have a week or so long camp that you can attend with the kids.
12. Museum- Some towns have museums especially for little hands. If your kids are a little older and past the point of ruining a priceless artifact try a science or art museum.*
13. Roller Skating- outdoor or indoor (remember safety gear like helmets, elbow pads, and knee pads.
14. Storytime-check your local library or bookstore for their storytime schedule.*
15. Bowling- This can be fun for even the littlest of kids with the ball ramp and bumpers most bowling alleys now have.
16. Cooking class-see if your community offers a kids cooking class.
17. Have a Sports Tournament- Kickball, Volleyball, Badminton...
18. Bounce House Place or Trampoline Park- Some places with bouncy houses have inflatable water slides in the summer too.
19. Mini Golf- Some locations will also offer bumper boats and go karts too.
20. Make Your Own Ice cream- Get some healthier recipes HERE.
21. Camping At Home-Let's be honest camping is only fun when you're a kid and don't have to pack, cook, clean, or set up anything. Camping at home has all the best parts about camping like the fire and s'mores without as much work. Plus when everyone realizes that sleeping outside is not as fun as it seems they can all head inside to their own beds.
22. Amusement Park-Check the park website most times kids under a certain age are free and they might have special deals like BOGO or a day where kids of all ages ride free.
23. Petting Zoo-Visit a local farm that lets you pet and/or feed the animals.
24. Outdoor Movie-Some communities will have an outdoor movies night at a local park or beach. If not host your own with a bed sheet and projector.
25. Canoeing-Make sure you practice water safety and everyone wears a life jacket.
26. Make Your Own Backyard Water Park- Here are some cool ideas.*
27. Make a Lemonade Stand-This is a fun way for kids to earn a little extra money while brushing up on their math skills.
28. Put On A Show-Have the kids make sock puppets and put on a show. Or put on a dance or music show.
29. Go See a Show-No, No not Les Mis...Disney on Ice, Marvel Universe Live, or Sesame Street Live...
30. Have a Backyard Field Day-Here are some awesome game ideas.
31. Backyard Carnival- Take #30 a step further by renting a pony, hiring a face painter and balloon animal artist. Find one HERE.
32. Paint a Bird House-Hang it outside with some food and watch the birds come to feast.
33. Concert-Go to a kid friendly concert.
34. Gardening-Plant a garden. The kids will have fun watching their garden grow and may even be more excited about eating veggies they've grown themselves.
35. Go To a Baseball Game
36. Batting Cages
37. Take a Trip to the Circus
38. Beach Day (obvious but fun)*
39. Sidewalk Chalk-Here are some fun ideas.
42. Scavenger Hunt-Have the kids look for objects outdoors, signs on a car trip, or hide treasures in the backyard for them to find.
43. Let the Kids Make Dinner-Kick back and let the kids prepare dinner. Give them some simple directions and make sure to supervise if they're younger.
44. Volunteer/Donate-See if your local animal shelter needs help, visit some of the elderly ones at a local nursing home, or have the kids round up some gently used clothes, books, and toys to give to the less fortunate.
45. Decorate a T-Shirt-Check Pinterest for how to tye-dye, or use paint or sharpie to make cool t-shirts.
46. Make Your Own Instruments- When you're done have a parade around the house.
47. Star Gazing-Get a book about starts and try to spot the constellations with a telescope or just your eyes.
48. Whale Watching*
50. Park Obstacle Course-Time the kids on how fast they can do the monkey bars, go down the slide, and traverse the other obstacles at the park. See who has the fastest time.
51. Make Your Own Kite-Find out how HERE.
Have a wonderful and SAFE summer everyone! Remember to apply sunscreen, keep hydrated, practice water safety, and make a habit of always checking the backseat for little ones before you leave.
Original Article posted for What's In Your Mom Genes-June 1, 2015