Although the official first day of Autumn is quickly approaching, we still have plenty of time before this year’s Autumn Equinox for unforgettable last-minute summer activities with our friends and family.  Whether your child is just starting school or still enjoying their pre-school years, be sure to invest in the last few weeks of warm sunshine.

Kelleys Island 

Aptly nicknamed “The Island of All Seasons,” this beautiful Lake Erie island is the perfect all-day getaway whether on the first day of summer or the last. Although only about 4 square miles big, this island is packed with activities and attractions for the whole family. Bicycling, hiking, and kayak rides around the island are all popular activities.  For a quick history lesson, take a break at the historic Kelleys Mansion for a family tour.  This island also has plenty of warm, sandy beaches for swimming and fishing. Come for the just the day or plan to stay the weakened at one of the islands cozy bed and breakfasts or rentals.  Because this island is open year-round, don’t be afraid to come back later this year for some fall and winter fun.

Family Drive-In Movie Night

Family movie nights should be a regular family tradition. Regardless of what you watch, these homey evenings are the perfect way to bond and build memories.  For a more economical, family-friendly evening, skip pricey movie theaters and enjoy a drive-in movie instead. Although many of these vintage theaters have vanished, there are still great options scattered throughout Ohio such as the Midway Drive-In, Springmill Drive-In, and Skyview Cruise-In.  Bring plenty of snacks and treats, blankets, and pillows for a cozy evening together.  For an extra memorable twist, bring your family along in their PJs for an impromptu pajama party together.

Cedar Point Amusement Park

This 364-acre amusement park is one of Ohio’s best family-friendly establishments.  Since its opening in 1870, millions of families have enjoying exciting days on the rides and cooling off at its adjoining beach attractions.  Although this park is best-known for its thrilling roller coasters, the park’s “Little Thrills” section is perfect for younger children. In addition to its rides and attractions, Cedar Point also offers fun family nights with BBQ, live music, fireworks, and light shows.  As Autumn approaches, plan to come for the park’s spooky Halloween nights September 15-October 29th. Exciting mazes, live shows, and “scare zones” are great for some family-friendly scares and laughs.

Catch a Baseball Game

With the MLB world series coming up in October, August is the perfect time to catch a baseball game with your family.  Regardless of how closely you follow baseball, nearly anyone can appreciate a fun day at the ball field.  Check for family days at Ohio State University’s baseball stadium or invest in a Cincinnati Red’s game.  Although you might not stay the entire day, be sure to enjoy a stadium hotdog or popcorn together.

Cleveland’s Garlic Festival

Garlic may be an acquired taste for some, but everyone can enjoy the quirky, fun atmosphere of Cleveland’s annual Garlic Festival. This family-friendly event is quickly approaching on August 26th.  Make a day out of this celebration and enjoy live music, food, and craft vendors.  This is the perfect place to give your children a taste of garlic as you enjoy the festival’s famous garlic fries together.  The “Mighty Locavores” section of the festival is perfect for children of all ages. This festival easily becomes a yearly family favorite.

Building a Teacher Treat Bag

If your child is adjusting to their first year at school, be sure to include a “teacher treat bag” as one of your end-of-summer activities.  Whether entering pre-school or kindergarten, help your child start off on the right foot with a thoughtful goodie bag for their new teacher.  Include thoughtful treats such as homemade cookies, candy, lotion, tissue packets, office supplies, or a colorful card.  This sweet gift is a great ice-breaker for your child and their new teacher.  It also allows you to help get your child excited about school and eliminate new student jitters.

This year’s Autumn Equinox is quickly approaching on September 22nd. However, this doesn’t mean we’re running out of time for unforgettable family fun and memories.  As you and your child prepare for a brand new season, make sure you get the most out of summer’s final weeks.


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