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9 Experiences your family should have this summer

Sarah Caron is a Connecticut-based freelance writer and editor. She lives with her wonderful husband, two adorable kids and two funny beagles. Check out her food blog at Sarah's Cucina Bella.

Live summer to its fullest

From watching fireworks to jumping in puddles, these easy (and mostly free!) summer activities are sure to make lasting good memories for the whole family.

ferris-wheel-at-fair

6Head to a fair

Fairs can be so much fun. Some offer an array of delicious foods, while ohers introduce you to all sorts of animals. Find one that suits your interests and head there. "Two of my kids are in 4-H, and the other two will be, too, when they're old enough. This always culminates in us attending the Canyon County Fair the last week of July, where my girls show dairy cows and rabbits and participate in the sewing contest and the fashion style review," says Harrison, who even entered some photos last year in a fair contest.

>> From funnel cakes to corn dogs: How does fair food fare?

7Do something wild

No summer would be complete without something wild. So, seek out cool animals at a zoo, ride wild white water currents or even visit a local preserve. Harrison and his family plan to go tubing -- at the river's pace. "There's a six-mile stretch of the Boise River that runs right through town, and it's a mecca for casual river floating during the summer. We try to make it at least once during the summer," says Harrison.

8See where food comes from

Farmers love talking to folks who buy their stuff. Kids? They love getting the dish on all sorts of stuff. So, let them know where their food comes from by taking them to the farmers market or a farm for some learning. "My boys are going to be spending some time with me at a local organic farm this summer helping to tend to the crops and see first hand what goes in to growing food. We already have a family garden that they help with year round, but they both have wanted to see the real workings of a sustainability farm," says Chef Stephanie Petersen.

>> Seasonal activities that build the family bond

9Swim!

And last but not least -- this is an every summer must -- swimming! Jen Jamar and her nine-month-old son Levi will be doing a ton of that this year, she says. "Since this is his first summer, our must-have experience is swimming. We're starting a Water Babies class this weekend so we can get him acclimated to the pool. My in-laws have a pool in their backyard, so I expect well be spending lots of time visiting Grandma and Grandpa this summer," says Jamar.

>> What are your must-have summer experiences?

More summer fun

4 Summer crafts and activities kids will love
8 Backyard games to keep kids entertained
Fun summer classes to beat boredom


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