Ruth Spivak: Kiducation


Best Summer Activities For Urban Families: Last Chance!

Tired Of Pools And Playgrounds?

Summer in the city with kids doesn't have to be limited to outdoor pools and playgrounds. Personally, I've had my fill. With only a few weeks left to go before school, I plan to make the most out of what the city has to offer. Here is my "last chance" summer activity list for the next few weeks. Most cities offer similar activities, and the best part? No towels required!

MUSIC: Outdoor concerts or more informal street performances are a fun way for the family to experience music. Walking along a pedestrian mall downtown, we caught Jazz, Folk, and Country. I just bought tickets to an outdoor opera show in Calgary, Opera In the Village. They're putting on The Pirates of Penzance. 

THEATRE: From Fringe Festivals to Shakespeare in the Park, summer is the perfect time to catch an indoor or outdoor show. Some kids' theatre groups do performances in playgrounds.

MUSEUMS: We don't often have time to visit the museum. During the summer months (and beyond) many museums offer special activities for younger children. Whether your interests are art, history, or science, you're sure to find designated times for families to engage the kids. 

FARMERS' MARKETS: Not just about the food, although there is plenty of beautiful summer produce to experience. Kids enjoy chatting with the local merchants and artisans, listening to the buskers, and sampling international flavours. 

GEOCACHING AND LETTERBOXING: Geocaching is described as "real-world treasure hunt" using navigational tools. Treasures are can be found in cities all over the world, and summer seems like the perfect time to try out this popular pastime. Letterboxing combines navigational skills with rubber stamping and journals. It's sort of an artistic version of geocaching. I haven't yet tried geocaching or letterboxing, but hope to try them out in the next few weeks. 

I like to think of exposing kids to arts and culture as a different kind of summer adventure. You never know what your family might enjoy, and what new appreciation may be implanted at a young age. Plus, it beats listening to screaming kids at the water park every day!