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Make Memories and have Summer Fun despite Covid-19

Published: 07/13/2020

By: Lyle Blanchard

Make memories with kids and still have Summer Fun despite Covid-19.

It’s been a different world since early March 2020 and everyone is adjusting.  Including kids and parents as they try and figure out where, what, or how they can still have that “Summer Week” so many of us long for.  For many families, summer is a that chance to have that special week.  That one week that you try and unplug, try and create some memories with the kids, grandkids or siblings, and hopefully return to work less frazzled then you were when you left.  Think back to those memories of the “week”.  You know the week many of us remember from our childhood. 

For me, it is filled with memories of all us kids piled in the car, (Ah yes…the old station wagon) a good old fashioned cooler in the back, and luggage, bug spray, Kool-aid packets, some hand-me-down fishing poles and a back seat real estate struggle that would make the Hatfield and McCoy’s seem like a mild and polite property line skirmish.  We were the poster family for the Chevy Chase parody film, “Vacation”.   The family road trip.  And you know what? It is some of my favorite childhood memories AND guess what?!…It’s back. 

Covid has changed a lot of things. Unfortunately for some it has meant loss of family, affected income, closed a lot of festivals, fundraisers and attractions, the list goes on and on.  But it cannot take away time spent together as family and it cannot take away summer.  It will change how you vacation, but it doesn’t mean you can’t have one.   

We tapped our own staff at State Bank Financial and asked what they are doing or have already done. Here are a few ideas for you.  They vary as you would expect, but they all are grounded in making the most of the situation for kids and grandkids. 

Justin: We just got back from a week of isolation in the Black Hills of South Dakota.  Rather than spending our time shopping in downtown Keystone, we decided to devote ourselves to enjoying the natural beauty of the many hiking trails and National and State Parks.

Jessica: We rented a cabin, making sure the place we went followed through with COVID pre-cautions and went fishing (we have our own boat). We also spent time as a family hiking, biking, and playing games. Stuff that keeps us safe, but not going stir crazy.

Ashley: Our only vacation plans this summer are to visit my sister who has an in-ground pool.  I’m sure we will spend plenty of time outside playing in a kiddie pool and sprinklers.  I would love to spend time out on the river, but our boat needs repairs before that can happen. Maybe we should take advantage of the Summer Fun Financing program. Ha ha!

Aimee: We are renting a cabin on the “Quiet Lakes” in Northern Wisconsin and fishing, swimming, and hiking.

Cindy:  My time off was a staycation…  It didn’t come in on time, but the plan was to use our fancy new adaptive bike (it’s a quad-bike, so essentially a side-by-side tandem)…  But now we’re using it to explore the neighborhood and town and will eventually take it out on the trails.

Sandy: My husband and I were going to go to Niagara Falls with friends in September this year.  That has been moved until next year. So, this year we are going to take a week in September and enjoy the great outdoors in the La Crosse area.  We plan on biking and hiking and having a few picnic lunches.  Spending some time by our fire pit.   During the weekends of course we will spend time with the grandkids and take them for ice cream at The Pearl and making smores.

There you have it.  Safe, affordable and family fun.  Covid doesn’t have to take out Summer Fun and you can make it work.  For more information on great staycation destinations in the region visit any of our area Convention and Visitor Sites for attractions, updates and a calendar of what is still open.  Many of the area State Parks offer great adventure as well.  (See additional tips and a Smart Travelers Guide from the Today Show)

Hat’s off to that special “Summer Fun Week” and to everyone for being resilient and resourceful!  Stay safe and have fun making some memories.

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