8 Things To Do Before Summer Ends

It’s officially past mid-August and somehow there’s still so much I want to do this summer. My husband and I moved apartments in July, which means we were inside many weekend days over the past two months packing/unpacking. Sad! Well, we made it to Coney Island on July 4th for the hot dog-eating contest, to the beach twice and to a Mets game … but I want more summertime fun, so much more. So, to make sure I don’t have any regrets come fall, I’ve made a list of 8 classic summertime thrills to have before Labor Day, if it’s even possible to fit them all in. Check ‘em out, after the jump. Maybe they’ll inspire you to take advantage of the last few dog days of summer, too.

  1. Watch the sunset. Taking the time to really watch the sun sink below the horizon is the simplest, yet perhaps sweetest, of summertime activities. Preferably with a cocktail in hand at an ocean-side bar. But even from the side of a road would do.
  2. Gaze at the stars. Life’s greatest pleasures are free, am I right? Lying on my back on a clear summer night, finding constellations, and scoping out shooting stars = magical. And with a make-out partner, the activity is truly out of this world.
  3. Party at the drive-in or at an outdoor movie fest. Miraculously, there’s a drive-in around the corner from where my family lives in Vermont, so this might get knocked off the list when I’m up there this weekend. (Actually, I think I need to do pretty much everything on this list this weekend; they all require the country.) Or, if not, there’s still another week for the Bryant Park Film Festival here in NYC — “Bonnie and Clyde” is screening on Monday night.
  4. Hit up an amusement park or fair. It’s really not summer until you’ve chowed down on cotton candy (or fried dough) and then nearly thrown it up on a roller coaster. I prefer going to county fairs over big, corporate amusement parks, because they’re way cheaper and have adorable farm animal displays (even if the rides are shoddily put together by a guy with a wrench blasting heavy metal).
  5. Stock up on seasonal foods. The season is over for strawberries and raspberries, but I think I can still get my blueberry-picking on in the country. Can I, please? This is the time of year to stop by farm stands in the country and the farmers’ markets in the cities for berries, squash, tomatoes, corn … the list of delicious summer produce is blessedly long!
  6. Take a ride in a convertible. There’s nothing like feeling the wind whip through your hair while cruising down the road in an open-air car. Blasting some songs of summer during said ride wouldn’t be a bad idea. (I prefer cranking ’70s tunes, like the Dazed and Confused soundtrack.) If the timing is right, this activity could be combined with #1 or #2.
  7. Throw a picnic in the park for my friends. I haven’t picnicked yet this summer or hosted any kind of get-together! Mostly, I want an excuse to make a bunch of summertime, seasonal recipes — fried chicken, a cold soup (avocado or cucumber), a corn and heirloom tomato salad, and watermelon something for dessert. I’d break out the croquet set too, of course.
  8. Lounge poolside, for an entire day. Since I have no friends with a pool, I don’t belong to a country club, I’m not a fan of public germ factories watering holes, and I don’t want to pay $50 for access to hang out at hotel rooftop pool here in NYC, I’m thinking this will remain a wish. Note to self: by next summer make friends with someone in the suburbs who has a pool.

Are there still things you haven’t done yet this summer? Do tell in the comments!

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