Theme days

As nights warm, set up a tent outside and snuggle in for an evening of storytelling and special snacks.
As nights warm, set up a tent outside and snuggle in for an evening of storytelling and special snacks.
Summer is the perfect time to set up a tea party in the yard. Dressing up is fun but optional.
Summer is the perfect time to set up a tea party in the yard. Dressing up is fun but optional.

It seems as though we’re headed to a socially distant summer, and while some places are beginning to open up, people will likely be spending more time at home compared to past years.

Here’s a brainstorm of ways you can have fun this summer at home or in your neighborhood.

Do you have any other suggestions? Send us an email at

Field Day

Divide your family and/or close neighbors into teams, maybe with color-coordinated T-shirts.

Compete in classic activities like tug of war, three-legged races, relay races, corn hole and sack races.

Have an egg or water balloon toss.

Set up homemade bowling with plastic soda bottles and whatever kind of ball you have.

Or go all out and design a multi-challenge obstacle course with challenges like an Army crawl, tire run, balance beam and zig-zag cones.


Set up a tent in the yard or living room complete with sleeping bags and flashlights.

Make s’mores or Jiffy Pop.

Tell ghost stories or star gaze.

See if you can hear night creatures like owls or bats, and hopefully avoid those like skunks.

Search for fireflies.

Spa Day

Who couldn’t use some more relaxation in their lives these days?

Turn on some white noise, calming music or a recorded guided meditation.

Test out face mask recipes with cooling cucumbers for your eyes (or a snack).

Soak your feet in warm water with epsom salts or essential oils.

Help paint each others nails and put on hand lotion.

Have a family massage train. Sit in a row and rub the shoulders of the person in front of you; don’t forget to rotate so the person in back gets a turn.

Theater Day

Put your performing skills to the test.

Maybe you have a talent show and each family member comes up with their own act to perform.

Or try a puppet show or play starring stuffed animals and dolls.

Dress up and improvise a tale. Coming up with scenes or plot ideas on scraps of paper before you begin can help make for a fun (and funny) show.

Or pick a favorite book and do a readers theater where each member of the family gets to read for a character or two. Don’t forget to assign a narrator, too.

Beach Day

You don’t need to head to the ocean for this, just toss on a swimsuit and fill the kiddie pool or bath tub for fun time splashing. A sprinkler, water balloon toss or squirt gun battle can also contribute to the water factor.

Make slushies by blending ice and Kool-aid to sip while lounging under your beach umbrella and reading a good book.

Or set up a game of lawn volleyball.

Tea Party

The obvious step one is to make tea, either hot or iced.

Snacks are good to have, too. Go sweet with shortbread cookies, scones or cupcakes. Or go savory with cucumber-cream cheese or chicken salad sandwiches or make some quiche.

Play some croquet or musical chairs.

Science Fair

There are probably thousands of science projects families can do at home. There are the classics like potato lamps, baking soda/vinegar volcanoes and Mentos and diet Coke explosions. Then there are the trendy experiments like making slime or a lava lamp with oil, water and alka seltzer.

Design the safest craft for an egg drop or bake something (it’s chemistry!)


The city’s playgrounds may be closed, but you can still use the parks if you stay a respectful distance from other families.

Pack an easy-to-serve lunch and a blanket or some lawn chairs for a lunch al fresco with a change of scenery.

Bring a Frisbee or foam football to play pass in an open space.


Queue up a classic or a new release. The choice is yours when watching from home. If you have a projector, you can take the show outside for a drive-in-like experience.

Popcorn or candy are traditional movie-going snacks for an authentic feel.

Red River Theatres created printable tickets and popcorn holders if you want to be really official. Just check out their Facebook page.

Author: Insider Staff

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