A Summer Bucket List for Any City

The sun is shining, the skies are blue, and the time is ticking away. Summer vacation is the best time to get stuff done, relax, and enjoy the weather, but sometimes it feels like it's over in the blink of an eye.

Well, this year is going to be your summer! There are so many fun activities to do during your short time off from school, work, and cold weather. RIT students come from all over the country, even the world - but there are some summer activities that you can do just about anywhere. Take advantage of these activities before it gets cold and you’ll have plenty of fun things to do this summer, no matter where you are.

1. Go Camping

While quality time in the great outdoors may not be everyone's favorite thing, going with friends can be a lot of fun. There are many campgrounds located throughout the country, even in smaller parks. Set up a tent and unroll the sleeping bag for a cheap little getaway. And don’t forget the bug spray!

Father and daughter taking their camping supplies from the car to the camp ground. The girl is dragging the heavy bag

2. Go to a Drive-In

Why go to the movies indoors when the weather is nice? Pack some snacks, pillows, and blankets and head to your nearest drive-in. If you don’t have a truck to lay in the back of, put your back seats down and open up your trunk for the perfect view.

3. Get Some Ice Cream

Although we have all got a scoop at Ben & Jerry’s during the cold Rochester winters, there is no better time to go grab yourself a cone than during the summer. Most cities have local ice cream shops you won’t be able to find anywhere else. What’s your favorite flavor? 

4. Go Hiking

Whether you’re out camping or just taking a day trip, try to find some trails this summer. The best thing about hiking is that you can find just about any route that suits your interests and skill level. If you’re looking for a long or short distance trail, trying to reach a destination, or just wanting to enjoy the outdoors, this is a classic summer activity.

Man hiking with a puppy on his shoulders

5. Go Strawberry Picking

There are plenty of farms that will let you pick your own strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, and other tasty fruits. Check with the local farm for what’s in season. This is a fun activity and you won’t leave hungry!

6. Go Kayaking

If you don’t own a kayak or canoe, there are plenty of rental services around major rivers, lakes, and other bodies of water. This is not only a fun way to spend a day, but it is also a great exercise. Don’t believe us? Wait till you feel how sore your arms are the next morning.

7. Have a Bonfire

Summer nights can cool down quickly. There’s no better way to warm up than sitting around a fire while hanging out with friends. Make s’mores if you need a late night snack!

Clip from the sandlot, eating smores

8. Go to a Baseball Game

Play ball! Gather some friends, grab a hot dog, and have a great day at a baseball game. Even if there isn’t a major league team near you, many cities have minor league teams such as the Rochester Red Wings!

9. Play Mini Golf

Even if sports aren’t your thing, everyone likes a quick round of mini golf - until you can’t get your ball through the windmill. Grab some friends and try for that hole in one.

10. Go Fishing

If your summer co-op has you stressed, fishing is a great way to relax and unwind. This is especially a great activity to do on your own. Before hitting the water, make sure to brush up on your state’s laws on fishing licenses. Some states require you to have them for all bodies of water and some are less restrictive.

Man fishing in a boat and catching a shoe

11. Go to the Farmer's Market

Farmers markets always have great food and a great atmosphere. There are many different booths and products that you could browse all morning. Wake up early, grab some coffee, and get shopping!

12. Volunteer in the Community

Use some of your free time to give back this summer. Everywhere has a need, so find a local charity that has a cause that resonates with you and spend some time helping out.

13. Set Up a Hammock Outdoors

You can set up a hammock just about anywhere. Although a park is the most preferable environment to relax, any two trees will work. Take a nap, read a book, or just kick back and relax.

Boy playing the ukulele while sitting in a hammock

14. Go to a Carnival

Rides, games, and cotton candy; although those might not be the best combination, they sure do create a lot of fun times and good memories. Carnivals usually travel from town to town, so chances are there will be one near you.

15. Try New Foods

During the school year, adventuring outside of normal eating routines can be tricky. You probably have some extra time in the summer to go to new restaurants and cook new foods. Try something new - you just might end up liking it.

16. Run a Summer Race

Even if you’re no serious long-distance runner, there are plenty of fun 5K runs. They are even more exciting if they are for charity. Training is a good way to get in shape and finishing is a great way to feel accomplished.

Phoebe from friends running past Rachel

17. Get Crafty

One of our personal favorite summer activities is getting crafty with clothes. Try tie-dying t-shirts and turning old winter clothes into cute new summer outfits. Cut your jeans into shorts and fray the ends to create a distressed style or turn a shirt into a trendy crop-top.

18. Find a Fireworks Show

Although fireworks happen every single summer, they never get old. Fireworks shows are mesmerizing to watch and a relaxing way to end the evening, especially with friends. Most happen around the Fourth of July but check for any other events happening around your town for some more.

19. Go to the Beach

Would it even be a summer bucket list without going to the beach? Lay in the sun, go swimming, make sand castles, throw a Frisbee, and just have fun. But don’t forget your sunscreen!

friends laying together on the beach as the sun sets

20. Take a Road Trip

Whether it’s only an hour away or ten, find an attraction that is outside of where you are and plan a trip with your friends. It’s a great way to bond with new friends, especially when you’re together in a car for hours on end. Remember to stay safe on the road, and don’t be afraid to make some unplanned stops. Some of the best finds happen accidentally.

Tagged: in the area, rit summer, student life, summer, summer tips