Summer vacation will be upon us soon and kids will be glad to be out of school, but within a week many parents will hear those famous words,”I’m bored”. What are some activities that kids can do over the summer months that will keep them entertained and out of trouble? Well, here are just a few ideas that I have used or plan to use this year.
Many summer camps are offered through the YMCA and local Boys and Girls Clubs. These can be low cost and will offer many different activities that the kids can participate in. I have never used one of these programs, but I have thought of it many times. This could be perfect for working parents if the child could be at the club during work hours. Try checking out the YMCA website and type in your city and state and see what programs are offered for the summer in your area. You could also just do a Google search for summer camps in your area and see what is available. I did that and came up with two near Trafalgar, IN. One was located at Camp Allendale and one at the Indiana FFA Center.
Another place that many kids would enjoy would be the local swimming pool. If your child can swim and you feel that they are old enough to spend some days there, it might be worth checking into a season pass for your local public pool. Some hotels will offer a pass that will allow children and/or families a pass into their indoor pool for a preset price. I know that near Trafalgar, Indiana The Seasons Lodge sells a pool pass that is good for a year.
Another activity that I just recently learned about is a program that many local bowling alleys have called Kids Bowl For Free. This program allows children to bowl 2 free games each day during the time frame that the individual facility has determined. There is also a family plan available at a cost that will allow the family to bowl 2 games each day. In most facilities, standard shoe rental rates apply. However, it is a great activity for the kids and a way to give them something to do each day.As parents we know how important it is that the kids get some physical activity each day and this is a good way to encourage them to not be couch potatoes.
Ask at your local theater if they will offer a free movie day during the summer. I know that in previous years we have taken advantage of such programs at Canary Creek Cinemas in Franklin, Indiana. These are usually previously shown movies geared towards kids that are shown one day each week at no admission cost. Snacks are sometimes discounted as well. It can be a fun day for kids and parents.
Check the local library. The library near us offers many activities for kids of all ages throughout the summer. They might have a story time, a craft day, free movies, a day to learn about other countries, or a number of other programs. Our local library offers many programs and activities such a game night and many educational programs both through the school year and during the summer.
Spend the day at the local city park, state park, or even a national park if you are fortunate to live near one. I have always thought of how nice it would be to live near The Grand Canyon, Yellowwood, or any of the National Parks. I know when we lived in Tennessee, we visit the Smoky Mountains many times. It provided a fun day for the kids as well as a great learning experience. However, your local city park can provide them with the opportunity to run and play as well as to possibly learn something new while they are there.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure that it is something that the child will be at least partially interested in or they will not enjoy it at all and summer will be a long two and a half months with a whining kid that doesn’t want to participate in the activities that you have planned for them.