We know what you’re thinking…
Summer is here, and in short order so too will be the “I’m boooored” complaints. To combat that, we are providing our dear readers with a pretty massive list (and printable-below!) of Summer bucket list fun. There is so much to do in Sonoma and Napa that is both fun and cheap, or even free!
Summer Bucket List
- Just for Tweens, Zumba at the Healdsburg library. FREE for ages 9-12.
- Enjoy the gentlest of the giants at Armstrong Redwoods Preserves.
- Hike the Bouverie Preserve, where four hour guided nature walks only come with a $15 per person suggested donation.
- Walk and Learn at the PlanetWalk, a scale model of the solar system designed to fit within the boundaries of Sugarloaf Ridge State Park.
- Enjoy a FREE docent-led tour at Jack London State Park and learn about the man behind Call of the Wild.
- Hike Helen Putnam in Petaluma.
- Do a Peanut’s inspired treasure hunt and find all the Snoopy Characters around Sonoma County!
- Download a Geochaching app, and start digging!
Vallejo Adobe in Petaluma
- Environmental Discovery Center at Spring Lake hosts Science Saturdays experiments at 1, 2 and 3 p.m. on the first Saturday of each month.
- Check out the Petrified Forest and be a witness to redwood trees that once grew in abundance here and were turned to stone 3.4 million years ago by a local volcano.
- Watch the Old Faithful Geyser explode, and read about it’s history of earthquake prediction!
- Take in the night sky at the Star Parties at Sugarloaf.
- Dig deep into Crazy Awesome Science the the children’s museum, geared for kids of all ages, every Friday.
- Civil War Days in Duncan Mills Every July, people from all over flock to the beautiful Russian River Valley to watch history come alive.
- Take a step back in history at the Petaluma Adobe and learn about General Vallejo’s ranch.
- Open cockpit at the Pacific Coast Air Museum! Look right into the cockpits of vintage aircraft, and actually climb aboard and sit inside some of them!
- Learn about the former state capitol, Sonoma by visiting Sonoma State Historic Park.
Find A Fair
- Participate in one of the many fun pre-fair contests for the Sonoma County Fair, where winning means a free entry to the fair, and sometimes more! (Entries due by June 15th)
- Head to Sebastapol on Thursdays the Barlow Street Faire, and Children’s Village, where your kids (over five) can play and while you and your best guy or girl enjoy all the The Barlow has to offer.
- Go watch the World’s Ugliest Dog Competition at the Sonoma-Marin Fair (Fair Dates: June 22nd-26th)
- Take a drive over to Sacramento for our State Fair! (July8-24th)
- Kids get in FREE every Friday at the Sonoma County Fair (July 22nd-August 7th)
- Take your toddler to Train Town and enjoy a little locomotive action!
- Come to Doran Beach Campgrounds in Bodega Bay the Friday Night Kite Fly with demonstration kites, or bring your own.
- Get Coastal in Tomales Bay with a Picnic and Oysters. When you book a picnic table with a grill, they provide oyster shucking tools, lemons, hot sauce, fresh grated horseradish, Hogwash and a complimentary shucking lesson (just ask).
- Get your mom-chill on at two of the most mild beaches in the crisp and salty NorCal: Heart’s Desire (Tomales) and Doran (Bodega).
- Grab Some Taffy at Patrick’s Taffy in Bodega Bay.
- Check out one of the many Farmers’ Markets.
- Stroll down Florence Avenue in Sebastapol and enjoy all the funky junk art from local artists, Patrick Amiot and Brigitte Laurent.
- Grab your binoculars and check out the Harbor Seals at Jenner and Goat Rock Beach.
- Feed the Ducks at Howarth Park.
- Go to a baseball game, in Sonoma!
- Dust off the your boogie-woogie and head on over to CalSkate for either $2 Tuesdays or Free Quad Fridays.
- Enjoy one of the many, many, local storytimes.
- Kick off Summer Play Days at the Disney Store! Join us for in-store events including Art of Drawing, Showtime, Story Time and Trivia.
- Join the Festival of Characters reading program at Copperfield’s Bookstore.
- Get your lego on at the Sonoma County Library.
- Go Bowling for FREE where kids who register, can enjoy two great games every day, all summer long at Windsor Bowl and Double Decker Bowling Alley.
- Join us at your local library at the estimated day and time to cheer on the runners and bikers who will be helping us to open Summer Reading at each site!
- Go Ice Skating at Snoopy’s Home Ice, where it feels like an Alpine village in a Redwood Forest.
- Get your sticker on with a guided tour at Mrs. Grossman’s sticker factory.
- Learn the secrets to how we create the legendary Jelly Belly in a FREE factory tour, and discover why it takes more than a week to make a single bean.
Head Out of Town
- Go to a Giants game (Bleacher seats are pretty cheap, and right in front of the crab sandwiches!)
- Walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.
- Go to the Marine Mammal Center.
- Hike and enjoy the stunning beauty of Point Bonita Lighthouse.
- Go to Chinatown.
- Drive down the world’s windiest road.
- Picnic in Golden Gate Park.
- Ride the Trolley.
- Enjoy a free day at the Cal Academy of Sciences.
- American Canyon Movies in the Park Fridays June through July, on Main Street! Showtime at dusk.
- Napa Movies in the Park, starting in July at Veteran’s Park, on Saturdays.
- Enjoy the cheapest movie theater experience with Summer Movie Clubhouse in Napa AND Novato where movies are only 1 dollar per person or $5 for 10!
- The Town of Yountville Parks and Recreation Department is thrilled to announce our “Hot Summer Movie Night Series” Once a month on Friday’s from June to October.
- FREE Beat the afternoon summer heat and chill out in the library with our Summer Cinema in Healdsburg.
- Reel Kids Summer Movie Series at Reading Cinemas, offers discounted tickets in Rohnert Park.
- Bring our blankets for Outdoor Movies at Howarth Park- FREE, East Santa Rosa.
- West End Movies at Deturk Round Barn Friday Nights, July through August.
- Tuesday Night free movies, on the Green in Windsor.
- Napa City Nights Concerts downtown from 6:30-10 pm every Friday.
- Yountville Music in the Park at Veteran’s Memorial Park on Sundays once a month from June to September.
- Dance your cares away at Live at Julliard: Now celebrating its 23rd season, this FREE concert series brings some of the Bay Area’s finest bands to Julliard Park.
- The Peacetown Summer Concert Series at Ives Park (Sebastapol) is just around the corner, FREE, beginning late June and continues all summer on Wednesdays from 5-8 p.m.
- Head to Healdsburg for Tuesdays in the Plaza: A true community gathering, bring blankets, chairs, and a picnic, FREE!
- Downtown Cloverdale comes alive every Friday evening throughout the summer, with Friday Night Live at the Plaza and the Cloverdale Farmers Market, FREE.
- Windsor Summer Nights hosts the The Windsor Farmers Market, complete with food trucks and lawn games, concert starts at 6 p.m, FREE.
- Rockin’ Concerts take place each Saturday from noon to 3 p.m. and on a couple of Sundays in Village Court, FREE.
Keep it Simple
- Host a Backyard movie night.
- Build a backyard fort.
- Make some art.
- Picnic at the park.
- Make a kite.
- Run a lemonade stand.
- Go berry picking.
- Join Scholastic’s Summer Reading Program.
- Start up the backyard firepit and make some Smores
- Camp in the backyard!
- Play some boardgames.
- Make sun tea.
- Write a letter.
- Organize a “backyard grape stomp” in honor of our region!
- Make some welcoming sidewalk chalk art, paint style.
- Make a bird feeder with a pinecone, nut butter, and seeds.
- Make some homemade ice cream in a bag.
- Create a neighborhood scavenger hunt.
- Host a neighborhood bike parade.
- Make tie-dye t-shirts.
- Make a kid “car” wash.
- Host a neighborhood popcicle party with homemade popcicles.
- Make some Giant Bubbles.
- Go treasure hunting for a garage sale (in the garage).
- Make some garden art.
- Watch a movie series at home.
- Have a sleepover.
- Jump into the floating Water Park at Spring Lake.
- Burke’s Canoe Trips invites you to spend a day (or more) canoeing down the famous Russian River.
- Enjoy the beautiful Veteran’s Memorial Beach on the Russian River in Healdsburg.
- Rejuvenate in the two warm mineral spring pools, relax under the oak canopy, and picnic on the grassy hills at Morton’s Warm Springs.
- Take your kids down to a public swim dip under the water features at Ridgeway Swim Center.
- Go Paddle Boating!