5 Ways to Enjoy the Season – Without Leaving Town
Ah, summer. Dinner al fresco, a dip in a cool pool – these are the things that winter dreams are made of. But what can you do on the cheap? Plenty.
1.Find out what's happening in town – search online for community events, including festivals and street fairs. Some towns host small weekly fairs with vendor stalls, live music and children's activities. Another great summer opportunity are ethnic festivals, where you can grab a bite to eat and enjoy live entertainment.
2.Search for free music – Music festivals, parades and even bars and restaurants are great venues to see live bands – for free. Search music listings in your city's weekly alternative paper, if you have one. Online, go to www.festivalfinder.com for music festivals all over the country.
3.Go to the big parks – When was the last time you took your family to a state or national park? These are wonderful resources for exploring nature trails, spending time with loved ones (picnic, anyone?), and getting a little exercise. It's also a healthy escape from suburban or urban living.
4.Get to know your bookstores and libraries – Local book shops often have free readings for kids and adults. Libraries host events such as children's summer reading programs, free classes and other activities.
5.Explore the arts – Have you been to all the museums in your area? Many have donation-only ticket policies and are not only educational but a wonderful way to beat the heat. You can also spend an afternoon viewing pottery, painting and other handmade goods at a regional art fair. Face painting and other children's activities will keep the kids occupied and food vendors offer inexpensive options for lunch or snacks so you can make a day of it.