Surviving the Summer Doldrums: Ban Boredom with Some End-of-Summer Fun

You have gone on your vacation, had your fourth of July party, sent the kids to camp... now what? Here is a short guide to keeping busy for the last few weeks of summer.

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Summer can be fun at first, but the high temperatures and humidity often gets the best of us by August. As a family, you may have already exhausted all of your fun vacations, and is has become a matter of time before the kids go back to school.  For the doldrums of summer, ward off the August boredom with the great attractions, events, and resources that Long Island has to offer.  If you don’t have the money to go on a mini-vacation at home, try some of our fun and free activities, such as volunteering or picking up a good book at the library.  Savor the last days of summer break, and carpe diem!

Volunteer a Helping Hand:   There is a high demand for volunteers on Long Island for a variety of services, ranging from serving food at local pantries to collecting materials for those in need.  Pick a local not-for-profit to help, such as a pantry, religious organization, or animal shelter, and find out what their needs are.  You can donate old clothes, or your skills, such as reading over people’s resumes or building shelves for a local organization.

Crack Open a Good Book for Some Summer Reading:  No, not the mandatory kind.  Jump into an intriguing beach read this summer to give your mind a bit of exercise, and to help your kids get back on track for school.  We have the best in new reads for children and for adults, and you can also check out your local library and get your children involved in the library programs, which are often filled with incentives to urge kids to dive into a good book.

Go for a Dip in a Public Pool: Don’t have your own pool?  Take a quick drive to a local public pool to get your swim in without having to worry about sunburns.  You also have the added benefit of lifeguards on duty so that you can bring your kids and know that they will be kept safe.

Plan a Final Staycation:  You don’t have to spend a lot to hype up the idea of a vacation to your kids while keeping them just a short drive from home.  Check out our guide to staycations and pick one for your last hurrah this summer, such as Fire Island or a trip to the city.

Get Cultured at a Local Museum:  Long Island is home of dozens of museums, ranging from the large renowned museums on Museum Row in Nassau County to smaller niche museums scattered across Long Island, such as the Maritime Explorium in Port Jefferson or the Railroad Museum in Greenport.

Eat Well at Farmers Markets:  Instead of shopping at the supermarket, stop by a local farmers market and learn about what fruits and vegetables are in season.  Best of all, you get the freshest foods that support your local economy.  You can even bring your kids with you and give them an informal lesson on different kinds of fruits and vegetables, as well as what it means for these plants to be in season.

Go Stargazing:  Nothing relaxes quite like an evening of looking up at the stars.  Lucky for amateur astronomers, the Perseids meteor shower will be visible August 11-13, though it will be much trickier to spot due to the lightness of the sky caused by the concurrent supermoon, which will be the brightest moon in the last three full moons.

Climb Up a Lighthouse:  Kids and adults alike love lighthouses – the height, the history, and the ambiance of being at sea and safely leading boats to port.  Many lighthouses on Long Island have also been turned into museums where you can get a feel for the local history, such as the Montauk Lighthouse, which has pictures of Albert Einstein in Montauk relaxing and writing notes on the beach.