The Good Life

20 Awesome Ideas for Family Summer Fun

Jul 15th, 2019

by Mahika Kawale

Turn your lazy weekend into a weekend full of family fun with these 20 ideas for easy and inexpensive family activities.

20 Awesome Ideas for Family Summer Fun

Turn your lazy weekend into a weekend full of family fun with these 20 ideas for easy and inexpensive family activities.

by Alec Lower

Are your kids already bored this summer? Are you looking for a fun and easy to plan activity that your family can do together? Well, it’s a good thing you clicked on this link because there are twenty awesome ideas that your whole family can enjoy starting right after this sentence.

Strawberry picking

Strawberry picking is an excellent way to spend part of a day with the family and tire your kids out in the process. They’ve got a huge field to run around and hunt for the best-looking berries, and at the end of the day, you get to take home the fruits of your labor (get it? Because they’re literally fruits? Sorry).

Make pudding pops

Pudding pops are a refreshing summer treat that will taste great, and the kids will love making them. It’s easy too. All you need are popsicle sticks and pudding. You can make the pudding yourself with chocolate Jell-O mix, or you can just use prepackaged pudding cups, which is a little less fun but a lot easier. If you opt for the prepackaged route, simply cut a slit in the lid and insert a popsicle stick. Then stick them in the freezer and wait until frozen. If you want to make the pudding yourself, just follow the directions on the box and then pour the pudding into a cup. Insert your popsicle stick and freeze the same way.

Lemonade stand

Who among us did not run a lemonade stand as a kid? Well, you should have. Set one up with your kids this weekend and let them take the lead. They’ll love the responsibility of handling the money and talking to their customers, and at the end of it, they’ll have some money to show for their hard work. Think a lemonade stand is too generic? Try a snow cone stand or bake some cookies for a bake sale. Let your kids get creative with what to sell and the options and fun will be endless.

person holding s'more

Make s'mores

S’mores are cheap, easy to make, and your kids will love chowing down on gooey melted marshmallow and chocolate over a nighttime campfire. Don’t have a firepit or place for a campfire? No worries. Pick up an electric s’mores maker from the store for around twenty dollars. You can also make them in the oven, although that is a little less fun. Get creative by adding other things you and your kids will love to your s’mores setup, such as peanut butter, caramel, or even pretzels.

Water balloons

Need a way to cool off during a scorching summer day? Grab some balloons from the dollar store and start a water balloon fight. Your kids will always enjoy the experience of throwing things at each other, and nobody will come back upset, only cooled off and soaking wet. It’s a win-win.

Make kinetic sand

Kinetic sand, sometimes referred to by the product name Moon Sand, is an excellent activity for the crafty one in your family. If you’ve never seen it before, this stuff is basically sand that easily holds together so that you can build all sorts of cool things with it. You can make your own too, so no need to go to the store. All you need is some play sand, corn starch, and water. Mix 3 cups of play sand with 1 cup of corn starch and 1 cup of water (adjust the ingredient amounts to meet the desired amount of moon sand) and get crafty.

Make homemade ice cream

Ice cream is another fun summer treat that you and your kids can make quickly and easily right in your home. If you already own an ice cream maker, you’re one step ahead, but if you don’t, you can still make some ice cream. Start with a gallon-sized plastic bag and a smaller plastic bag. Fill the small one with 1 cup of heavy cream, 1 cup of half and half, ½ a cup of sugar, and a teaspoon of vanilla extract. Partially fill the gallon bag with ice cubes and salt. Make sure the ingredients in the smaller bag are well mixed and place the small bag in the gallon bag. Shake the whole thing for about five minutes. Now you should be ready to enjoy homemade ice cream.

Trampoline park

A trampoline park is a great option for a hot summer weekend when you really don’t want to be outside. The kids will love it, and it will wear them out quicker than they think. You’ll be surprised at how much energy these things take. It will wear a person out, even one with the seemingly endless energy of a kid.

Go fishing

Everybody remembers the first fish they ever caught, so if your kids have never had the opportunity to reel one in, this summer is a great time to share that experience with them. Dig up some worms from your yard (if your kids are really little, this might end up being their favorite part) and then grab some fishing rods and head to a local pond (make sure the pond is public, or you might get yelled at). It’s best to go later in the evening because it’s a lot cooler and the fish will bite better, so your kids will have a much better chance of catching one.

Make a summer scrapbook

This is a great way to get your craft on and make memories that will last forever. All you need is a scrapbook, fun patterned paper, photos, scissors, and a glue stick. This is a great way for kids to show their creativity, and for even younger children to practice their writing skills. One scrapbook page per day will give your whole family a daily dose of craftiness.

GINORMOUS BUBBLES

This one will definitely win you cool points with the kids. I mean, what’s cooler than an enormous bubble? Absolutely nothing. All you have to do is mix together 1 cup of distilled water, 2 tablespoons of dish soap, 1 tablespoon of glycerin, and 1 tablespoon of white corn syrup in a container, then refrigerate for 24 hours, and voila, your magic bubble mixture is ready. Now all you have to do is supply your kids with straws and sit back as bubbles take over your backyard.

Create your very own backyard water park

Okay, this is basically just turning on a sprinkler, but backyard water park sounds way more fun. Letting your kids run around while being sprayed with water is not only peak entertainment, it’s a great way to cool off in the summer heat. Throw in a bucket of those water balloons we mentioned earlier, and your kids will never want to go back inside. Make sure to keep towels on hand so that you don’t end up creating an indoor waterpark as well.

Sidewalk art

Arm your children with chalk and head on outside for this one. Sidewalk art has two advantages. First, you can encourage your kids to exercise their creativity on the sidewalk instead of your newly repainted walls. Secondly, you can discover whether or not you’ve got a mini Picasso on your hands. Clean up is also extremely simple: just wait for it to rain. If you want to go even simpler than chalk, you can let your kids use paintbrushes dampened with water to create their masterpieces.

mini-golf

Mini golf

Get those competitive juices flowing with a family-friendly round of mini golf. The kids will love it because they get to compete against each other and try and beat one another and you’ll love it because you get to work on your short game.

Start a garden

We all know kids love playing in the dirt, and starting a garden is one way for your kids to get dirty while doing something useful! Spinach, broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower are perfect for growing during the hot summer months. Who knows, having a part in the growing process may even make your kids excited to eat their vegetables. If you don’t want to commit to dedicating part of your yard to a garden, tomatoes and lettuce grow well in pots.

Smoothie bar

Healthy and tasty snacks? That’s what we’re here for. Smoothies are the perfect summer beverage, no arguments there. Lay out all the fruits and veggies you can think of and let your kids build their own smoothie. Then distract your kid with your phone, and throw in a handful of spinach. They’ll never know what hit ‘em. Now all that’s left is to blend and enjoy! If your kid is especially anti-green, serve the smoothie in a non-transparent cup. Sometimes, ignorance is bliss. Here’s one of our favorite recipes to get you started: mango, pineapple, overripe banana, and spinach.

Host a backyard carnival

What’s more fun than classic carnival games? We can’t think of anything, especially when playing these games is free since they’re all DIY and happening in your backyard. Set up a ring toss with empty plastic soda bottles or even a bean bag race with pillowcases. Stack some cans and have a “who can knock them all down” competition. If you want to up the stakes a notch, give out some prizes to the game-winners. You know what they say, competition makes the heart grow fonder.

Play dress up/pretend to be Disney characters for a day

Halloween in July without all the candy? Talk about a great idea. Have your kids dress up as their favorite Disney character and then step back and let their imaginations take the wheel. Reenact the entirety of Frozen, take a trip to the grocery store dressed as Toy Story characters, the options are limitless. If you’re not stocked up in the costume department, let your kids raid your closet. There’s definitely a 90s varsity jacket somewhere in there that would look adorable on little Johnny.

Have a picnic

This is definitely an old school summer activity right here. Picnics are a great way to spend some quality time outdoors with your kids. Just head over to your local park with some sandwiches, watermelon slices, and lemonade. Your kids will be more than happy to run around and work up an appetite before having lunch outside.

DIY bird feeders

The first step to this is having your kids go on a scavenger hunt for pinecones. As soon as you’ve got a good supply going, it’s time to bring out the peanut butter. Have your kids use a butter knife (supervised, of course) to spread peanut butter in an even coat around the surface of the pinecone, and then roll the cone in birdseed. Now, you’ve got yourself your very own DIY birdfeeder. Lastly, use string to hang the pinecones on nearby trees. Congratulations, your yard is now THE SPOT for all the neighborhood birds.

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Mahika Kawale
Mahika Kawale
Communications and Content Marketing Intern
I am currently a student at UNC-Chapel Hill and joined Second Nature as an intern in May 2019. I love to write and am majoring in journalism with a double minor in creative writing and writing for the screen and stage. Outside of school and work, I enjoy going to concerts and spending time with friends!