Low-Cost, Healthy Summer Activities for the Family

The days are longer and our moods seem brighter. For many of us, that’s reason enough to gather our families and do something fun. Here are some low-cost, healthy activities to try this summer.

scenic campground sign with a hiking path
  1. Have a picnic at a local park or in your backyard
    Pack a healthy lunch for the family, some cold water, and take a stroll to your local park or to your backyard. Lay a blanket out and enjoy. Bring a Frisbee or ball along for a little extra activity.
  2. Go for a scenic walk or hike
    Maine is packed with hidden treasures! Do a quick “Google” search or use http://www.mainetrailfinder.com to find trails for walks or hikes near you, or even take a stroll downtown. Maine is scattered with adorable downtowns with local business and street art. Take the family for a walk and see what hidden treasures you can find. There are many free options, you just have to explore.
  3. Have a smoothie making contest
    Break into family teams or work individually. Make a smoothie using what’s around the house. The one rule: it must include at least 1 fruit and 1 vegetable. Have everyone sample and vote on their favorite when time is up.
  4. Go to the farmers market
    Just because you go does not mean you have to buy anything. Bring the family to the market to meet the farmers, listen to live music, have a picnic, check out what’s being sold, and maybe even taste-test a few new things.outdoor festival with people playing large xylophones
  5. Find a festival or fair
    Look for events happening in your area and plan to go as a family. Summer is the prime time for many music, food, and art festivals. The Maine Public Community Calendar (http://mainepublic.org/community-calendar) is a good resource for finding local events.
  6. Have a sports tournament
    Family whiffle ball tournament? Group up with some other families and make a day of it.
    Grab a basketball and use an outdoor court at a local school or park. Need to cool down? Pick up some water balloons and make it a game of water-balloon tag. Just be sure to pick up all the plastic balloons when you’re done (you can make that a game, too… who can get the most?).
  7. Try a new recipe
    Get the family’s input and plan a meal for dinner. Go grocery shopping and cook the meal as a family. At the dinner table, talk about what you like and what you would change in the recipe next time.
    Check out the Maine SNAP-Ed recipes: https://www.mainesnap-ed.org/recipe/
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