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Summer in the USA Posted by on Jun 21, 2017 in Culture

Summer is officially upon us. Final exams are finished, and students are now off on their long summer holiday. Adults are still stuck at work, but the nice weather means more chances for fun outdoors in the evenings and on weekends. There’s a lot going on during this season. Let’s learn more by taking a closer look at summer in the USA. Here are 10 popular activities in the summer months.

Vacation/Road Trips

The Grand Canyon

For many people across the country, summer is the perfect time to take a vacation. With the kids out of school, parents will use those hard-earned vacation days to take the family on a trip. Some of the most popular places include: Disney World, national parks like the Grand Canyon, and cities such as Washington D.C. or New York. While some choose to fly, many embark on that great American tradition – a road trip. The whole family packs into the car (or maybe even an RV) and hits the open road to see the country.

4th of July

On the 4th of July, Americans celebrate Independence Day. This national holiday is celebrated with lots of red, white, and blue, as people dress and decorate in the colors of the flag. There’s lots of delicious food, such as hot dogs and corn on the cob. People sing patriotic songs like “America the Beautiful” and “The Star Spangled Banner.” There are also parades in may towns and cities, and a whole lot of fireworks. See what a 4th of July party looks like in this short video:

Family Reunions

Dance party at a family reunion!

A very popular thing to do in the summer is have a family reunion. Kids are out of school, so it’s easier to get everyone together in the summer months. It’s the one time of the year where you’ll see your aunts, uncles, and cousins who live on the other side of the country. Family reunions typically take place at someone’s house, or at a local park or event space. They’re a great opportunity to re-connect with your extended family and try to squeeze everyone together for that elusive family photo.

Graduation Parties

For those who just finished high school, most weekends in the summer are spent going to graduation parties. The family of a student who just graduated will invite friends, family, and neighbors over to celebrate. Typically, guests will give the recent graduate a card with a check or some cold hard cash. Many parents will insist that most of the gift money be put aside for college, but they’ll still get to keep some of it for summer fun.

Weddings

A summer wedding in the USA.

Summer is also a very popular time to get married. Many refer to the months of April-October as “wedding season,” since there are so many weddings taking place in these warmer months. Just as those young adults receive countless invitations for graduation parties, slightly older adults get tons of wedding invites throughout the summer. There’s also all the extras that come along with a wedding – bridal showers, bachelor/bachelorette parties, rehearsal dinners, and so on. Want to see what an American wedding looks like? Check out this video I put together from my wedding:

Cook-Outs/Picnics

One of the most popular ways to enjoy the nice weather is to get outside for a cook-out or picnic. Many local parks have grills and picnic tables set up already, so all you have to do is bring some charcoal along with your food and drink of choice. Popular things to bring are: hot dogs, hamburgers, potato salad, fresh fruit, and lemonade. If you don’t feel like cooking, you can just pack a simple lunch and a blanket to enjoy a picnic.

 

Baseball Games

Summer in the USA

A great night for baseball!

Summertime in America means baseball games, and lots of them. Baseball is known as the country’s pastime, and summer is a busy time for this popular sport. Children all around the country play on a team in Little League, while many adults join a league with colleagues or friends. The MLB (Major League Baseball) season is in full swing in the summer, with all 30 teams playing games on almost a daily basis. Before you go to the ballpark, you’ll want to learn the song “Take Me Out to the Ballgame:”

Summer Camp

Many children will attend a summer camp in the US. This might be something in their hometown that they just go to during the day, or they may travel for it and stay for a week or two. Typically, summer camps include a wide variety of activities. There are also many summer camps that are focused on something specific, such as sports or music. They’re fun for the kids, and also for the parents, who get sick of having them home all the time during the summer!

Amusement/Water Parks

Cedar Pointe in Ohio

What better way to enjoy a summer day than at an amusement park or a water park? An amusement park is full or rides, from a carousel to a roller coaster. They also have plenty of games to play and yummy snacks to eat. Water parks have lots of water slides, wave pools, and maybe a lazy river. A visit to either one is fun for the whole family and a big highlight of summer. Some of the most popular amusement parks include Cedar Point and Six Flags.

Music Festivals

I <3 music festivals.

This is definitely my favorite part of summer! Music festivals big and small take place just about every weekend all across the country. Some festivals take place in the middle of a big city, such as Lollapalooza in Chicago or Outside Lands in San Francisco. Others are on huge farms, such as Bonnaroo in Tennessee, or in the mountains of Colorado like the Telluride Bluegrass Festival. At many of them, attendees camp out and create a small city for a few days. There’s nothing quite like a summer music festival! Take it from me – I’ve been to dozens of them. See some highlights from this year’s Summer Camp Music Festival in this short video:

 

Where are you from? What do people in your country like to do in the summer months? Leave a comment and let us know!

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About the Author: sasha

Sasha is an English teacher, writer, photographer, and videographer from the great state of Michigan. Upon graduating from Michigan State University, he moved to China and spent 5+ years living, working, studying, and traveling there. He also studied Indonesian Language & Culture in Bali for a year. He and his wife run the travel blog Grateful Gypsies, and they're currently trying the digital nomad lifestyle across Latin America.