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9 Eco-friendly Summer Activities

Picnic items onto of a striped blanket at the beach, with text overlayed: 9 Eco-friendly Summer Activities

Summer is officially here! From picnics in the park to taking advantage of long days and soaking up every minute of sunshine, there are so many ways to stay eco-friendly while packing your schedule full of fun for your family or kids. You can enjoy these summer activities in the great outdoors (or indoors, if rain spoils your plans) without worrying about waste or causing harm to the environment.

1 – Give your home garden a makeover. Spring cleaning, who? Summer is the perfect time to give your garden a refresh. Upcycle cans into planters instead of buying them from the store, get creative and transform old furniture into storage space for garden produce, or breakdown concrete to build pathways.

2 – Discover a local farmer’s market and shop local. Support small business and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time. Before you head out, make sure to do your research and learn what grows easily in your area and prioritize buying seasonal produce.

3 – Start a new upcycling project. We’re all guilty of hanging on to extra stuff just in case it becomes useful again. But you don’t need to wait to catch the yoga bug to get use out of household items hanging around your house, whether that be an extra yoga mat (or three), old bras in your closet, or even pots and pans.

4 – Keep your kids cool with sustainable water games! Water balloon fights are a classic for hot summer days and undoubtedly one of the most fun activities to cool down. Unfortunately, balloons are not the best for the environment and create litter. Swap your balloons for water guns, organize a cup-to-cup water race, or turn old fabrics from around the house into makeshift sponges that can hold water and be tossed around.

5 – Plan a picnic. Whether it’s trying something new for date night or inviting all your friends for a potluck, summer picnics can be the best way to reconnect and get outdoors. And you don’t need to go any farther than your backyard for a successful meal! Keep it environmentally friendly and use glass containers to pack up leftover food (or brush up on recycling Tupperware containers with our What Goes Where tool), pack non-disposable utensils to cut back on plastic, and try and plan your meal so you have little to no food waste. 

6 – Go stargazing. Truly one of the most magical sustainable activities you can partake in, grab a pair of binoculars and take advantage of dark skies. Seek out a spot that is farthest away from light pollution as you can get and keep an eye on the weather for a clear night to get the best view. 

7 – Have a donation day. Donating clothes can extend their life span and keep them out of landfills. Make this is easy as possible for everyone in your household and set up donation bins around the house!

8 – Organize a coastal clean up. Grab your friends, family members or co-workers and head out to the beach — there’s nothing more green than protecting and preserving our oceans, beaches, and coastal waterways! 

9 – Try a fireworks alternative. We all love a celebratory fireworks display, but they can be a mess to clean up and the environmental impact is less than stellar. There are so many eco-friendly alternatives to fireworks, from laser lightshows to getting creative with bubbles or fireworks in a jar. If these activities just don’t spark the same joy (pun intended), make sure to dispose of your fireworks correctly and safely. And remember: fireworks are never, ever recyclable. 

This list of eco-friendly activities is a great way to start planning for an amazing summer!