Is it just me or does it feel like we jumped right from winter to summer this year? We were having 50 degree weather a couple of weeks ago and now it's hot and in the 80's! Either way, as the days get warmer there are so many fun outside activities you can do with your kids. Let's be honest, most of them involve water in some way because in Georgia when it gets hot it is HOT!
1. Atlanta Botanical Gardens www.atlantabotanicalgarden.org
The Atlanta Botanical Gardens is a lot of fun for kids and grownups alike. They have a really cute kids area with sandboxes, playgrounds, fountains and more. They also have tons of fun events for kids in the kids area. They do story time in the garden, puppet shows, garden stroller walks and lots of other fun and creative activities. You can check out all of their kids classes and events here: http://www.atlantabotanicalgarden.org/kids-schools/kids-events-classes Also, the Botanical Gardens get bonus points for having a cafe that consists of more than cold chicken fingers and fries. MetroFresh cafe has a delicious assortment of fresh, healthy food.
2. Piedmont Park Legacy Fountain Splash Pad http://www.piedmontpark.org/do/legacy_fountain.html
Let's face it, Piedmont Park is pretty awesome all around. There are playgrounds, a dog park, a big lake with ducks...all very amusing activities for your little ones. One of the coolest parts of Piedmont Park, in my opinion, is the new splash pad, especially in these hot approaching months. Best of all it's FREE! The splash pad is open from 8am-8pm.
3. The Little House of Art http://www.thelittlehouseofart.com/
Ok, so this one is indoors, but sometimes when it's REALLY hot, you just need the AC. The Little House of Art is in the new development on Dresden in Brookhaven. You can go and create your own works of art in free time which is $10/hr or you can go to one of their special classes. They also have summer camps going on all summer with fun themes. Also take note: they do a kids drive in movie on a couple of Saturday nights per month where you can drop of the kids from 6:30-9:30 and they give the kids pizza, juice, watch a movie, do crafts and mom and dad get a few hours out themselves!
4. Dunwoody Nature Center http://www.dunwoodynature.org/
The Dunwoody Nature Center is always a good place to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life and enjoy nature. You can go just take a stroll around the nature center and explore the Wildcat Creek, wetlands boardwalk, treehouse, or beautiful gardens. They also have special events going on throughout the summer such as concerts in the park every Saturday in June and the Butterfly Festival on August 17.
5. Food trucks!
Food trucks have gained popularity all over the US and Atlanta has jumped on the bandwagon (no complaints here!) Food trucks are fun because they are outdoors and you and the kids can try a variety of foods. There is something for everyone, even the pickiest eaters! There are food truck parks popping up all over Atlanta but probably the most popular one is the Atlanta Food Truck Park which is permanently set up Tues-Sunday off of Howell Mill Rd. http://www.atlantafoodtruckpark.com/contactus/ Check out their web site for times the food trucks are open!
6. City of Roswell Splash N' Play http://www.roswellgov.com/index.aspx?NID=868
The City of Roswell has two sprayground parks open Memorial Day weekend through the summer for just $1 for children over one and free under one. The two locations are at Riverside Park (575 Riverside Road, Roswell, GA, 30075) and East Roswell Park (9000 Fouts Road, Roswell, GA, 30076). They also offer pavilion rentals for summer birthdays. This is an inexpensive way to stay cool in the summer!
7. The Path Trails http://pathfoundation.org/trails/
The Path Foundation is a cool network of offroad trails filled with moms with strollers, cyclists, runners, and people walking their dogs. My favorite kid friendly trail is in Decatur and starts at Mason Mill Park where there is a playground and a library, then goes 1.25 miles to Medlock Park where there is another playground. Parents can get their exercise in while they walk with the kids on the trail and kids can get all of their energy out at the parks. The trail is a wooden boardwalk or paved surface which makes it easy for pushing a stroller. The Chastain Park path is also a popular double loop for walking groups of moms with strollers.
8. The Atlanta Braves http://atlanta.braves.mlb.com/index.jsp?c_id=atl
This one is sort of a given for an family with "big" kids. Braves games are always a fun summer past time for Atlantans. You can get cheap tickets unlike some of the other Atlanta professional sports teams so it won't break the bank for the whole family to go to a game. My favorite are the evening games when it cools down a little bit and you can enjoy being outdoors!