School’s out for the summer

It is time for summer fun for everyone! All it takes to have fun with your family is knowing when and where to look for those great activities. From the first official kick-off of summer—typically Memorial Day—to the final summer holiday—Labor Day—there are many fun and adventurous activities for children and families. Now is a great time to access all that free fun in your community.

During my years as a parent advocate, one of the tasks I enjoyed most was putting together information about spring and summer events. It was called the Summer Activities Catalog. The catalog listed fun (and free) things that were taking place in the city and county. The minimal cost, if any, were included in the listing along with the date of the function giving families plenty of time to prepare for events if they wished to attend. The families I worked with really looked forward to the catalog each year, so I thought I would share some How To tips to create your own local summer activities listing.

Tip 1: As we know, we are in the social media generation. Our children know how to access the web and retrieve info, which is a wonderful opportunity to gather summer fun activities. Try creating a family-friendly Facebook page and link monthly activities. There, group members can easily access the information as well posted by others. This project allows the whole family to engage and children will feel they are an important part of decision making.


Tip 2: Parenting magazines, neighborhood newspapers and local event happenings can be found in the community information areas at most libraries. The events listed are free and contain many family fun happenings at low or no cost. Here you can view an example of Central Ohio’s events.


Tip 3: Stay safe. Health and safety ensure both family and friends make wonderful memories. Here are a few great summer safety tips to remember.


Tip 4: The best things in life are free. If it is a picnic, bar-be-que in the backyard, or a walk through one of Ohio’s beautiful parks or wildlife sanctuaries, it doesn’t cost a thing and you can create great memories with your family. Metro park walks also promote health and wellbeing!

I’ve included just a few ideas to develop a local summer resource for families. Stay safe and enjoy your summer!