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Granite State Rumblings: Some Great Ideas For Spending Time With Your Kids This Summer

Well, here we are nearly at the end of July and there is still about a month left of school vacation for the kids. If you are running out of money and ideas to keep them entertained, here is a list of fifteen no or low cost ideas.

Make Paper Planes – Look up great new layouts or teach your child the classic folds of   paper planes.

Supplies: 8×11 paper, ruler, flat surface

Build a Fort – Every child loves to pretend to be in the wild west or camping out. Capture that creativity and build a fort as a hide out or camp site inside.

Supplies: sheets, pillows, blankets, tables, etc.

Picnic – Load up a basket or backpack with all the fixings for your lunch or dinner and a blanket. Head out to your local park or even your front lawn and have a fun meal.

Supplies: lunch or dinner food, blanket, flashlight (if at night), bug spray/sunscreen

Pillow Fight – No explanation necessary here.

Supplies: big fluffy pillows (make sure they do not have buttons on them)

Hide and Seek – If your kiddo is too old for classic hide and seek, try out the night version “Ghosts in the grave yard” and allow them to play outside at night (with parent supervision of course).

Supplies: good hiding spots

Bake Cookies – Find a recipe that uses any of the baking goods you have around home or purchase a log of dough from your local super market. Let your child help with the measuring and mixing.

Supplies: cookie dough (homemade or store bought), oven, cookie cutters, icing, etc.

Visit the Library – Look for new books to read, or create a scavenger hunt for different books on animals (picture lists for the little ones).

Supplies: library card, car (unless you live within walking distance)

Scrapbook – Give your child some old photographs they love to make special scrapbook pages you can add to your own scrapbooks.

Supplies: old pictures, craft paper, glue, sparkles, etc.

Origami – This ancient art form is fun for kids of all ages.

Supplies: origami paper or really thin paper (easy to make small folds)

Make S’mores – Everyone loves to enjoy this treat. What makes it even better is it is easy for kids to make!

Supplies: gram crackers, chocolate bars (like Hershey’s), marshmallows.

Finger Painting – Allow your kids to go wild with paint. We recommend doing this craft outdoors.

Supplies: kid friendly paint, trash bags (to layout under where the little one will be painting), large pieces of paper

Treasure Hunts – This is an easy way to occupy your child long enough to get some chores done around the house (maybe even a way to get them involved in the chores).

Supplies: hidden treasure (something like a favorite toy), a piece of paper with a “treasure map”

Camp at Home – Pitch a tent your living room or yard and allow the kids to enjoy the fun of camping without the hassle of a vacation.

Supplies: tent, sleeping bags, blankets/pillows, flashlight

Photography – Set your child up with your old digital camera or a disposable camera with a few shots left from your last vacation.

Supplies: camera

Create a Play or Musical – Have your kids come up with an original play or musical and act it out for you at the end of a days practice.

Supplies: imagination, props or costumes from household items.

Whatever you decide to do, have fun!!

Thursday, July 23, 1:45pm – 2:45pm, Jeb Bush Gorham Town Hall Meeting, 20 Park St, Gorham, NH 03581

GROWING UP GRANITE

Here’s a list of some of my grandkid tested Granite State attractions. They do have admission fees. Listed in no particular order of preference.

McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center

2 Institute Drive, Concord, NH 03301 Phone: 603-271-7827

The planetarium serves as a living memorial to Christa McAuliffe. The shows blend computer generated effects, video, slides and music into an awe-inspiring experience. Take a trip to the stars and beyond at the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center. In March 2009, the name of this educational center changed to the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center, in memory of Alan Shepard, the first American astronaut in space, who was from Derry, NH.

Story Land

850 Route 16, Glen, NH 03838 Phone: 603-383-4293

Story Land is the children’s theme park where fantasy lives! With wonderfully themed rides, lively shows, friendly storybook characters, unique play areas, and so much more, there’s a smile and adventure around every corner. Whether it’s a family tradition or a family first, a visit to Story Land creates memories to last a lifetime.

Seacoast Science Center at Odiorne Point State Park

570 Ocean Boulevard, Rye, NH 03870 Phone: 603-436-8043

The Seacoast Science Center is located on the last undeveloped stretch of New Hampshire coastline. Cultural and natural history exhibits for the entire family. Visitors can touch and learn about tide pool animals in the indoor tide pool touch tank and learn about the seven habitats found on the 350-acre park.

Children’s Museum of New Hampshire

6 Washington Street, Dover, NH 03820 Phone: 603-436-3853

This hands-on arts and sciences museum offers many engaging exhibits, including a dinosaur dig, a throne room, a kaleidoscope exhibit, a yellow submarine, a post office, a music matrix and more. It’s an interactive delight for all the senses!

Mount Washington Valley Children’s Museum

2936 White Mountain Highway, North Conway, NH 03860 Phone: 603-356-2992

Come for hours of fun and entertainment in our educational safe environment where parents and children 0-9 can explore our wide variety of exhibitions where we encourage children and parents to interact and learn thru play! The Mount Washington Valley Children’s Museum nurtures the natural curiosity of all children and the adults in their lives and encourages shared discovery through exhibits and programs that inspire exploration.

The Mount Washington Observatory Weather Discovery Center

2779 White Mountain Highway, North Conway, NH 03860 Phone: 603-356-2137

The Mount Washington Observatory Weather Discovery Center is an

interactive science museum that brings the wonder of the atmosphere right to your fingertips! Explore the science of climate and weather through fun, interactive exhibits like our air cannon, flow tank and wind room. With hands-on exhibits and lessons for all levels of experience, the Weather Discovery Center is appropriate for all ages.

Polar Caves

705 New Hampshire Rte. 25, Rumney, NH 03266 Phone: 603-536-1888

An amazing series of caves and passages formed by the falling of massive boulders nearly 50,000 years ago as the third continental glacier moved southward over New Hampshire’s White Mountains. Explore the Rock Garden, a jumble of glacially deposited granite boulders, and take a self-guided tour of the caves. Also, pan for stones. Buy a bag of Mining or Fossils rough and use our Sluice to wash away the dirt to uncover gems and minerals. Also, The Klondike Mine: Klondike Mine is designed for younger ages but can be fun for the whole family. Enter one of our three mines, once inside use your light and start our family scavenger hunt for minerals and other hidden gems.

Charmingfare Farm

774 High Street, Candia, NH 03034 Phone: 603-483-5623

Visit the largest collection of agricultural animals and North American wildlife in New Hampshire. A visit to this 180-acre farm is affordable, educational, and exciting for children and adults. The farm is home to more than 200 animals consisting of 30 different species. Encounter wolves, lynx, fishers, reindeer, river otters and more. The barnyard offers traditional farm animals, hands-on petting, pony rides, and horse-drawn hayrides.

New Hampshire Fisher Cats Baseball

Northeast Delta Dental Stadium, 169 S. Commercial Street, Manchester  603-641-2005

The New Hampshire Fisher Cats are proud to serve the entire state of New Hampshire. Through extensive community outreach programs, affordable pricing and a first class entertainment experience at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium, the Fisher Cats have become New Hampshire’s premier outdoor entertainment destination.

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About MaryLou Beaver

New Hampshire Campaign Director Every Child Matters Education Fund
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