If you are among the thousands of seniors who are anticipating summer visits from their grandkids, you may be looking for places to take them while they are with you. The good news is that most public places have relaxed their Covid 19 restrictions and are welcoming visitors and guests. This means that you now have an endless list of entertaining possibilities for both you and your grandkids.
To help you with ideas, the following is a list of five types of places that will amuse and delight adults and children of all ages while being cost-friendly. Remember to have your smartphone fully charged as you will want to capture all the fun for sharing with family members.
Five Places to Visit with the Grandkids this Summer
1. Petting Zoos: This is a lovely way to get close to animals that your grandkids would not normally be around. They can touch, hold and pet different domestic animals such as goats, calves, ponies, rabbits, sheep, small donkeys, and pigs. Some petting zoos let the guests watch cows being milked and may even let their guests try the milking process. Most petting zoos also offer the opportunity to feed the animals.
2. Farms and Orchards: A car ride in the country will have you passing by many farms and orchards that are open to the public. Orchards give you the opportunity to pick your own fruit from trees or from plants along the ground. Then you can bring the fruit home to eat fresh, to bake in pies, or to make into jellies or jams. Farms let you see how corn, soybean, and other grains are planted. Dairy farms let you see how the animals are milked and how the milk is prepared for grocery stores. Some dairy farms use the milk to make ice cream that they sell to their guests. What a yummy end to a farm visit.
3. National Parks and Museums: Every state has a list of interesting parks and museums that feature extraordinary people, places, and events that affected the local area. National parks have walking, hiking, and biking paths that include informational plaques statically placed along the paths which explain what makes the place so special. Museums have artifacts, pictures, and documents that represent special individuals, events, and inventions that made an impact on our daily lives. Museums have gift shops where your grandkids can find a great memento to take home and remember this special trip.
4. Trolley Car and Train Rides: Depending on where you live, you can take the grandkids on a trolley car ride or a local train ride that takes everyone along a scenic trip through the city or out into the country. These types of rides can last from one to several hours in duration.
5. Physical Activities: Your grandkids will be full of energy that will need an outlet. You can pack a picnic lunch and take the grandkids to a local playground where they can play ball, swing on the swings, play in sandboxes, climb on the monkey bars, or use any of the other free gym equipment available. Some playgrounds have wading pools where everyone can take off their shoes and splash their feet in the water. Another physical activity that is great fun for the whole family is mini-golf. This is a game with no winners and no losers, just a few hours of enjoyment.
Before leaving the house to visit outdoor places, make sure that everyone is ready for a day of fun in the sun. Everyone needs to wear light-colored loose clothing and to have a protective layer of sunscreen spread on all exposed skin areas, to have a wide-brim hat, and to have a pair of UV reflective sunglasses. It is also a good idea to have a cooler filled with cold drinks to make sure everyone stays hydrated.
Regardless of where you and your grandkids plan to visit, always call ahead to find out if the establishments are requiring their guests to continue wearing masks or to be fully vaccinated. If you have Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan, the Covid 19 vaccines are fully covered at no cost to you. Being vaccinated gives you an added layer of precaution when traveling to places where there will be plenty of strangers.