Becoming the Best U : Fining summertime memories

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By Nancy Plummer, Columnist, The Times

Question: Summer is my favorite season and yet I never seem to make the most of it. I feel like every year I turn around and it’s September and I’ve done nothing exciting or memorable. Any advice to make this summer a great one?

 Rochelle – Philadelphia

Answer: I understand Rochelle. I think most of us would say they let summer slip away. In the blink of an eye, it’s Labor Day and we wonder how where the time went. My advice is to write a list of three things you love about summer. Is it walking on the beach, lounging on your back patio, picking fresh blueberries, or watching a sunset on a beautiful evening? Sometimes we forget that little special moments are what we remember most. Next write a list of five or more things you’d love to do this summer, whether it’s going to the beach, watching a baseball game (I’m going to assume it’s to see the Phillies,) or going to a festival. Ask your loved ones and friends for input and put them on your list even if a few ideas are out of your comfort zone. Summer is all about letting your hair down! Need some ideas?


  1. Try a private scavenger hunt in Ocean City, NJ., hosted by Alley Kat Adventures. It’s a two-hour unique experience that’ll be sure to create some fun memories. While there don’t forget to walk the boardwalk and indulge in a box of salt water taffy.
  2. Rent a Watkins Glen State Park cabin for the weekend and enjoy some great hiking trails, kayak trips, or visit some nearby wineries.
  3. When’s the last time you rode on a roller coaster? Enjoy a day at Six Flags Great Adventure and feel like a kid again.
  4. Wanting to get on the water but want to stay local? Take a three-hour dinner cruise on the Spirit of Philadelphia. Watch the beautiful sunset over the Philadelphia skyline and end the evening dancing or taking a stroll under the stars.
  5. Take in the sights of historical Philadelphia with a Double-Decker Hop-on Hop-off sightseeing tour. It’s always fun to show off our beautiful historic city with 28 stops including the Liberty Bell, Betsy Ross house, and of course, the Rocky statue.
  6. Take a break and relax in some of Philadelphia’s seasonal parks and beer gardens. Each one has its own wonderful vibe. Spruce Street Harbor Park is located on the Delaware River, offering everything from specialized craft beers and cocktails, fabulous food from local restaurants, roller skating park, bean bag toss, and colorful hammocks to lounge in and soak in the summer breezes.
  7. Grab some baskets and go picking for summer fruits and vegetables at Shady Brook Farm in Bucks County, PA. Live music, food & drinks, and games make this a family favorite in the summer.
  8. Take in some wonderful concerts this summer at the Mann Center, located in the beautiful Fairmount Park in Philadelphia. Not only do they feature iconic musicians, the Mann also hosts orchestras that play to movies such as Jurassic Park and Rocky.
  9. Enjoy the timeless beauty at Assateague Island National Seashore, a 37-mile gorgeous barrier island of the Eastern shores of Maryland. You’ll be able to camp and watch these wild horses while they roam the beaches as they have for centuries. It’s a trip to put on your bucket list for sure.
  10. If you’re wishing for a big adventure, consider biking all or part of the 150-mile GAP Trail, the Allegheny Passage Rail Trail from Maryland to Pennsylvania. The once railway path was redesigned for cyclists and extends from Cumberland, Maryland to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


Becoming the best U is all about making every day count. So, make your list, make it happen, and I’m confident this summer will be one of the most exciting and memorable summers ever!


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