Continuing with my running theme based loosely on my own brothers' difficulty from being away from their Xbox's, iPhones, laptops, etc., I have devised another (genius) remedy for those out there struggling to find themselves at one with nature this summer.
Or, in layman's terms, want to spend more time outside but don't really know what to do other than sitting in a park for 15 minutes, swatting away the odd fly, and feeling bored.
I write from my own experience here.
So - I've done some research, and I've compiled it for you (aren't I good?) so you don't have to. Here's what you can be doing, when and where, in a (semi) organised list for you.
View below, in date order, minus the odd category thrown in. What's life without whimsy?
P.S. I've tried to include things for all ages to do - from the littlies to the biggies. If there's anything you think should be on this list, please email me (email@example.com). I'm a super perfectionist and couldn't stand to think I'd missed a worthy thing out.
We all know how bad the traffic can get to the coast during the holidays, alas, fear not! York Maze have created their own beach for our (and deffo farmer Tom’s) summer-time entertainment. There’s a giant sand area, surf simulator, limbo dancing, music and even a BBQ, for those seaside tummy rumbles. On 5 August, info here.
Head over to Humble Bee Farm, Scarborough, for an evening nature ramble with a spot of bat watching. They’ll show you how it’s done, with their bio-acoustic bat detecting equipment for extra sensory detection – you don’t have to worry about batting an eyelid (ha). On 5 August, details here.
The Harrogate Orchid Society will hold an Orchid Weekend at the RHS Harlow Carr, Harrogate, with amazing displays, information, potting demonstrations and of course the chance to take one home for yourself. There’ll even be specialist talks for the orchid enthusiasts amongst you. 5-6 August, here. There’ll even be live music courtesy of the Wakefield Metropolitan Band playing as part of the RHS’s Live Music Sundays evenings, hosted on 6 August (here) and 13 August (here).
Round ‘em up, round ‘em up! Dalby Forrest are hosting their summer Duck Dash! The race will be below the Visitor Centre playpark and is organised by and in aid of the Friends of Dalby Forest. Bring your most athletic duck down and don’t skimp out – there’s prizes for the first three ducks. On 6 August, here.
If you go down to the woods today… You probably won’t have a surprise, as its Teddy Bear picnic time! Bring along old Ted for a day of sing-a-longs, games, laughter, competitions and a picnic courtesy of Make a Wish Events! At Newby Hall, 7 & 14 August, here and here.
Go wild in the holidays at Humble Bee Farm, Scarborough, with wildlife-oriented activity sessions on the farm, featuring: crazy creepy crawly games, (smelly) cocktail making, silly sprints and dodging predators! From 9 August – 30 August, here.
Grab the whole brood and your cycles, because Fountain’s Abbey & Studley Royal, Ripon, are opening up their water garden for keen cycle-o’s to speed ‘round. (Just kidding, don’t go too fast). On 11 & 22 August, here and here.
Do you take a good picture? Have you wanted to try out the Christmas present camera that’s been lurking nearby? Take this chance – Going Digital are hosting a photography workshop at Beningbrough Hall, Gallery & Gardens for you to develop your skills with the beautiful gardens as your debut backdrop. 12 August, info here.
If you find yourself fancying an evening stroll, meet up with the River Foss Society for a walk through Nunnington. You’ll meet and finish at the Royal Oak, followed by supper if you fancy it. 14 August, details here.
Join head gardener Nick for a bug and butterfly (flutterbies and creepy crawlies, to you and me) hunt through Rievaulx Terrace. He’ll show you where they gather – but make sure to take your investigatory equipment, just in case… 17 August, here.
What lies beneath the murky waters of your local pond? Newts, water lice, water boatmen, molluscs and pea mussels to name but a few… The folks over at Fountain’s Abbey & Studley Royal, Ripon, will provide the nets, you just need to bring yourself, to discover the world beneath the waves. On 18 August, details here.
Find out all about renewable energy, how to make your own water wheel or Archimedes Screw, solar oven and renewable energy powered vehicle. Also – it’s a family-proofed event, so make sure you’ve got your pack-ups, the kids (if you wanna) and find out how to involve the whole fam in saving our planet. At Howsham Mill, on 21 August, details here.
Here’s one to REALLY get your heart pumpin’ 26 August marks National Dog Day! Get yo’ pooch over to Rievaulx Terrace to celebrate everything special about man’s best friend. You’ll be joined by Jerry Green Dog Rescue Centre, so you can get little missy excited about inter-dog comps, petting and fun activities, too. Info here.
One for the small peoples: visit DIG, on Saint Saviourgate, for Little Diggers: Garden Explorers edition to learn about soil, archaeology, bugs and animals in the sensory garden. What happens to the objects found after hundreds of years underground? Get your kiddies to find out, and teach it to you… Win/win! 26 August, info here.
Newbrugh Priory, in Coxwold, open their doors once more for their annual Flower Power Fair 2017. If you don’t know what that means (because I didn’t) then it’s basically: if you like flowers, do this. They’re so, so beautiful. Get yourself there for advice, knowledge, woodland walks, and extremely reasonably priced potters for sale and – of course – the views! On 28 August, details here.
If you’re looking for a good family day out, then Micklegate’s Soapbox Challenge’ll sure you bring you that. There’s over 50 teams competing for the winner’s trophy and raising money for charities down Micklegate. Wave your flags as they speed by in their homemade carts over the infamous Ouse Bridge cobbles, or gather at the finish line to see who makes it out fully intact. 28 August, here.
Feelin’ crafty? And I don’t mean like you’re up to no good… Gather at Howsham Mill for a family demo on forest art. The ancient art of Hapa Zome (bashing leaves), creating Andy Goldsworthy-esque sculptures and creating your own au natural paints are all on the agenda. 31 August, details here.
I'm unsure if you've picked up on my love affair with Brimham Rocks before, but here we are. I will for now and ever after profess my love: I adore Brimham Rocks. How do they stay like that? Where did you come from? It's perfect for every occasion! Sad, happy, angry? Brimham.
I mean, what can you even say about Brimham Rocks that isn’t already explained by the dramatic natural landscape made up of huge, towering boulders the perfect size to climb? Words don’t do it justice, but it’s not all that meets the eye. I mean sure, you can climb, but what about THESE things, too?
Discover climbing on 5 August. You’ll be guided through a short climb in the great hands of the instructors from Harrogate Climbing Centre. If you’re over seven, you’re good to go.
Give Geocaching a go with the Taster session on 9 August. Learn about tech-savvy treasure hunting amongst the rocks (and the wind). Download the app from home, make sure you’ve got a full battery on the day and they’ll make a geocacher outta you yet.
Get wild and go walling at the Wild Walling Weekend, hosted by the Otley and Yorkshire Dales Dry Stone Walling Group, 19-20 August. Watch the experts rebuild part of the Visitor Centre wall and let the little ones help building the children’s wall. Wild walling indeed…
And, so, that'll be all for today. Remember, though - if you think there's something missing, or (God forbid) any errors, drop me a quick email on firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll sort it lickety-split. Until next time...
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