End of Summer Boredom-Busters for Kids – Our Short List
UNDATED - The summer is wrapping up, and with family vacations and camps coming to a close, kids of all ages might be looking for activities to fill these last few weeks of summer before the school year begins.
With this in mind, we here in the WJON Newsroom have been asking our colleagues and friends a question - what are some of the ways YOUR kids are staying busy and having fun in these last few weeks of August?
We've picked a few of our favorites and made sure to label them age-appropriately. Whether your kids are gearing up for high school, or not even school-aged quite yet, hopefully we've found an idea or two that will be new to you. Check it out, and please feel free to add your own ideas into the mix!
Art As You Like It | Website
For those of you with artistically-inclined or interested youngsters, "Art As You Like It," located on Division Street in Waite Park, operates as a walk-in art center. Basically, your kids can show up any time during their business hours and work on projects like pottery painting, glass fusing, and clay making. All art supplies are provided.
And by the way, "Art As You Like It" is open to kids and adults of ALL ages and skill levels. To learn more, check out their mission statement.
Downtown Gym's "Tiny Tumblers" Program | Website
This is an option for parents of more rambunctious youngsters. Downtown Gym, located on 7th Avenue in downtown St. Cloud, offers a tumbling program for kids toddler-aged to preschoolers. Classes are offered at different times for different age groups on Mondays and Wednesdays - for times and availability, give them a call at 320-360-6651.
Catching frogs at a nearby pond
Ages: Grade-Schoolers (and kids at heart)
This idea isn't specific to a particular place, but it definitely rated as a favorite after being suggested by a parent here at Townsquare Media. She says her young daughter had a blast spending the afternoon looking for frogs at a pond near the family's home. Essential equipment includes a bucket and a net - both which can be found at any dollar store around. This also serves as a good reminder that nature and our local parks, lakes and rivers are full of do-it-yourself fun.
Clearwater Rodeo | Map
Ages: toddlers - high schoolers (and beyond)
The 33rd Annual Clearwater Rodeo is another event paying special attention to kids. It runs from August 17-19. Each day, kids under 12 can get in for $6 and kids under 4 will be admitted for free. Additionally, Sunday is Kids' Day, with a day's worth of different activities especially planned for for the occasion. And as you probably figured, this is something the whole family can do together.
Disc Golf | St. Cloud Disc Golf Website
Ages: older kids - teenagers
Chances are, if you live in St. Cloud, you've been to, or at least driven past, Riverside Park, right across University Ave from the Clemens and Munsinger Gardens. What you may NOT know is that there is an 18-hole frisbee golf course spanning the grounds. This is an especially popular activity with older kids, teens, and college students. You'll have to provide your own frisbees, but the course is free to all. By the way, this is certainly not the only disc golf spot in the area. After a little digging, we found out that these courses are everywhere! The St. Cloud Disc Golf club organizes all kinds of play around the area, so your kids are certainly encouraged to use them as a resource.
Quarry Park | Map
A perennial favorite for area teenagers with a sense of adventure, Quarry Park and Nature Preserve is an expansive wildlife area with miles of hiking trails, bike paths, rock climbing piles, granite swimming pools – and it's pretty much smack dab in the middle of Waite Park. Brave souls are often rock climbing, and even braver ones are spotted hurtling their bodies off what are easily considered “cliffs” into deep water pools. As a bonus, it's cheap to frequent all summer long on high school summer paycheck stipends.
We'd love some feedback from you on your kids' end of summer boredom busters. Leave us a comment - and enjoy the rest of summer!