Summer days are too hot to spend a lot of time outdoors, so planning outdoor evening activities is a great way to take full advantage of your stay in nature. When you spend time outdoors, you get vitamin D for the health of your immune system (yes, even in the shade!) As well as in the fresh air. It is also good for your mental and emotional state to be outdoors, as our bodies seem to be better regulated in nature. If you’re looking for a way to spend your summer evenings out, here are four activities you can try alone or with friends.
Start and take care of the garden
While the garden definitely needs a lot of daylight to thrive, one of the best times to take care of the garden is in the cool evenings. When the sun is low in the sky, this is the perfect time to remove weeds, control pests, irrigate plants and cut flowers.
You may also find that local wildlife is usually more active in the evenings, so you can see lizards, birds and even deer in the garden. If you don’t already have a garden, here’s a great guide to help you think through the most important parts of getting started – what do you want to grow, where should you grow it, and how do you care for it properly? If you don’t have a yard or area for permanent garden plants, a container garden is a great alternative; you can also plant flowers and vegetables, all of which are easily accessible from the back porch.
Visit the local botanical gardens and parks
Even if you have your own garden (and especially if you don’t), exploring the local botanical gardens and parks is a wonderful evening activity in the summer. These gardens usually have paved and / or well-maintained roads, making it easy to navigate even in dim light. Many venues host set-up evenings and events in the summer, and festive lights are placed to brighten up the surroundings. Take a small picnic snack and some portable chairs to sit down and enjoy the view during the tour. A trip to the botanical garden is also a great opportunity to spend time with your friends and family away from home in a pleasant environment, and your grandchildren will love to be able to roam the outdoors. If you are unfamiliar with nearby locations, check out this comprehensive list.
Order a garden play night
If you’re looking for an evening activity a little closer to home, organize a backyard play night with friends and family. You can offer a full range of traditional barbecue dishes, or choose a themed evening and a classic ice cream parlor.
When everyone has eaten, the game can begin. Depending on the guest list, backyard games may be relaxed and subdued or noisier. Classic games like cornhole are great for all ages, and you can even play while sitting; some cornhole sets have built-in lights so the evening game doesn’t have to end early. Additional games include a backyard version of popular board games such as Checkers, Yahtzee and Bingo, huge, courtyard versions.
Join an evening walking club
In the hot summer months, it is almost impossible to find comfortable time for outdoor walks. To spend much-needed exercise and time in nature, join an evening walking club in the area (or start one if you can’t find a suitable group). A walking club is a great way to have fun and be accountable while incorporating physical fitness into your routine.
For an evening walk, make sure you anticipate the route during bright daylight hours. Look for unstable sidewalks or blind corners and try to plan a route around them. Walking with headlights and reflective vests is good safety practice, even if you’re in a large group. As the walk becomes comfortable in the evenings, you begin to notice that the sights and sounds of the area at dusk are unique.
Whether you want to venture out of your home or spend some time on the back porch, summer nights with friends and family are a great way to enjoy the season!
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