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MAIN Arrow to Summer Vacation Survival Guide IndexSummer Fun Guide Arrow to Rainy Day Activities Summer Activities For Adults

fun at the beachThroughout the year, you usually take care of everybody else, so when summer rolls around .... a surprising desire to "break out" sometimes hits like a bolt from the blue.

Of course, you want to be a responsible adult so often you'll just wait until the feeling passes! But what if you listened to your inner child, and really went with it this summer?

Many medical experts says that when you diverge from the "same 'ol same 'ol" you stand a better chance of increasing your energy and creativity, to face the world refreshed.

Summer fun doesn't have to be expensive, or entail a lot of time or planning. In fact, these top ten tips and ideas are guaranteed to take you from busy grown-up to fun-loving kid in no time at all:

1. Go on a mini-vacation - Hire a babysitter to mind the kids, then spend a romantic weekend getaway with your honey at a country bed and breakfast. Or think about a cruise to nowhere, an adventurous camping trip, or maybe an overnight stay at a local hotel. With room service.

2. Take in a music fest - Wherever you happen to be located, there will probably be an easy way to get to a summer concert scheduled nearby offering a cheap live music venue. It may even include a fireworks show at the end of an evening of cool jazz, classical music, nostalgic doo wop, or even a chance to see big name headliners at a nominal price.

3. Go to a street fair - Urban street fairs are now a sure sign of summer in cities from coast to coast. Check out a local street fair schedule near you, like the 9th Avenue Food Festival in New York or the Union Street Art Festival in San Francisco, and remember that these are often one-shot events that are easy to miss. So, make sure to jot it down on your calendar and have fun sampling the local food, entertainment, and prime people watching.

4. Have a block party - If your street doesn't host one yet, make it happen by talking it up with next-door neighbors. All it takes is portable tables, homemade fixin's, and community pride. Just make sure to get a permit, then pitch in to hire a DJ or rent a bouncy house to keep the kids amused and the teen's rockin' throughout the day. And who knows? It might even become an annual tradition.

5. Throw a summer theme party - Plan a summer blowout with a summer theme. Consider an indoor or outdoor beach party, Hawaiian luau, or a Christmas in July spectacular.

6. Host a movie night - Fire up the DVD, grab the snacks and popcorn and spend the night in air-conditioned comfort at home with friends and family. Make it a tradition on a Saturday night to feature different themes throughout the summer such as Disney, sci-fi, action-adventure, or a Hollywood night party.

go on a roller coaster ride
Nothing beats a day at the amusement park for feeling like a kid again...

7. Visit an amusement park
- Other than taxes, what's a better reason for having dependents than using them as "cover" to visit your favorite amusement parks? You will be the one actually having most of the fun. Cancel your diet for the day and recall what it feels like to have cotton candy melt in your mouth.

8. Go fishing - Remember a whole day spent shooting the breeze with dad or grandpa while not actually doing ...anything? Fishing remains a No.1 bona fide reason for getting away from it all for a day or afternoon at the lake or park. And catching a fish is great, but absolutely not a requirement.

barbecue grill9. Hit the backyard grill - Whether it's Memorial Day, 4th of July, or a lazy summer weekend, drop what you're doing and plan for a backyard barbecue. Invite the neighbors and spend the day noshing on chicken wings, ribs, burgers and hot dogs. For the little ones, don't forget juicy drinks, finger foods, watermelon and a cool summer dessert.

10. Shake it up! - On the weekends, break out of the old routine by trying something NEW. Learn how to golf, go scuba diving, kayaking, or drive to a state or national park for a fun summer photo safari. Go ahead. You know you always wanted to...

While everyone else is having fun this summer, remember to resist the urge to think about your grown-up obligations and give the little kid that still lives inside you a break. Your friends, family, and YOU will be very glad you did!

Have fun!

More ideas for adult summer activities around the Web:

Fun Outdoor Games for Adults - guide with ideas for team sports, plus related features on activities for all ages.

Summer Living: Outdoor Party Ideas - Martha Stewart tips on how to really make the summer fun with dozens of ideas for party food, decorations, themes and activities right in your own backyard.

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