Momservation: If you want to feel like a kid again chase the ice cream man down the street with a handful of change.
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About a decade ago I conceived and launched Summer Fun Wednesdays: Pick a day in the middle of the week so the kids have something to look forward to each week; select fun places or things to do in and around our area; put out the schedule in advance so friends can join us when they can; show them why you securely claim the title of Fun Mommy.
I kept the 8 week schedule flexible for considerations of heat, age ranges of friends accompanying us, and value pricing. Plus, it had to be fun for me too. Too much work and it got axed.
For example, if it was going to be over 100 degrees, I would flip flop to an indoor activity like ice skating. When Raging Waters announced a great deal on season passes, we bumped the water park to our first outing so we could take advantage of it all summer. If friends with toddlers were joining my school-age kids, we skipped the water park and went to Folsom Lake instead where it’s easier to keep an eye on little ones.
Now that my kids are teens and free time with them is harder to nail down we’ve added more extreme adventures. This summer we’ll go river rafting on the American River and do a progressive pool party. But below you will find a list of the classics that are still fun for any age. Remember, the fun is in strapping on the bowling shoes and jumping off that high dive with your kids…
Summer Fun Wednesdays*
- Raging Waters. General admission is $30.99, but for $12 more you can get a season pass with no blackout dates, free State Fair entrance and one free bring a friend pass.
- Bowling. When it’s too hot to be outdoors, grab friends and head indoors! At Country Club Lanes it’s $30 a lane per hour, but you can bowl up to 6 people—that’s $5 per person. For teens there are bowling/lazer tag specials every night of the week.
- Lazer Tag. More indoor fun at Country Club Lanes. $7.50 for a 20 minute game. Wacky Wednesdays buy one game, choose 1 of 4 freebies which includes 20 minutes of bowling or snack bar food. Monday nights special: Fire ‘Til You Tire unlimited lazer tag plus hot dog, nachos or fires and a drink only $16.
- Sky High Sports. Indoor trampolines let you jump your guts out or play a bouncy round of dodgeball for $10 an hour. On Wednesdays get 2 hours for $15.
- Outdoor or Indoor Mini Golf. Golfland Sunsplash offers 18 holes of golf for $9. If you buy online you can get 4 for Fun Golf for $28. Too hot? How about indoor Monster Mini Golf? Play glow in the dark mini golf under black lighting on a monster themed course. $8 for little monsters, $9 for big monsters.
- Aquatic Centers. The public pool has never been more fun! Water slides, diving boards, water playgrounds, and even underwater music! $7 gets you into Folsom Aquatic Center, $6 to Wackford Aquatic Center in Elk Grove, and $5 to the Roseville Aquatics Complex.
- Surf Xtreme Indoor Surfing. Come for the surfing, stay for the trampoline and paintball! For $43.95 you get 1 hour of indoor surfing, 1 hour of trampoline jumping, and an all-day paintball pass. A pricier day, but the BEST DAY EVER is off the charts.
- Drive-In Movie. Why stick to the day? Make it a night adventure! West Wind Drive-In shows all the latest movies in double features. Kids 5-11 are only $1, kids under 5 are free and adults $7.50. What a way to enjoy a beautiful summer night and you don’t have to sneak in the snacks!
- State Fair. It wouldn’t be summer without a fair! And if you have your Raging Waters season pass you get in free and can spend your money on an unlimited ride wristband for $28 (if bought pre-sale before July 11). Or go on a Tuesday when kids 12 and under are free and rides are only $2.
- River Cats Game. Grass seats are just $10. Come early for a chance to get autographs, game balls, and pictures with players. Don’t forget a glove!
*For the Sacramento area, but most major cities offer comparable if not same venues.