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LWR Life
East County Thursday, May 23, 2019 3 months ago

Parent Mental Health: The Summer Edition

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The best family-friendly events Lakewood Ranch and Sarasota have to offer this summer
by: Jess McIntyre Contributor

Remember when summer meant endless Popsicles, playing barefoot in the streets and staying out until you could hear your mom bellowing at you that it was bedtime? As a kid, summer symbolized a level of magical freedom achieved only by counting down never-ending school days until that final bell in May (or June if you lived up north). Those precious summer moments were filled with sunscreen and pools, bug spray and camps, s’mores and sleepovers.

But much like Fourth of July fireworks that hold your attention captive until they brilliantly fizzle out, when you become an adult responsible for keeping small versions of yourself alive, all those fond memories of summer are a distant fog. Your current understanding of summer is now nine bajillion expensive activities organized on a (less than) color coordinated chalkboard wall in the kitchen. The same one you used for six days in February during a meal-planning New Year’s resolution.

Amidst packing swimsuits and towels and sunscreen and water shoes and snacks and bug spray for your tiny herd, you are barely keeping it together. Summer laundry is piling up (seriously, HOW do such small living beings create so much laundry?!?), there is never enough food in the house, and you can’t even remember when you last saw your kids for more than 10 minutes without someone needing something.

Fear not, fellow brain-fried moms. There is a balance. You can cart your kids back and forth, keep up with your house, your jobs and still find a way to enjoy summer again.

Lakewood Ranch and Sarasota offer a plethora of family-friendly events or activities throughout the summer (and some throughout the whole year).

LWR Classic Car Show

First Wednesday of every month from 5-9 p.m. on Lakewood Ranch Main Street

Go check out some amazing classic cars and listen to their engines roar. Grab a bite to eat, sit back and enjoy.

Music on Main

First Friday of every month from 6-9 p.m. on Lakewood Ranch Main Street

A concert series and block party with food vendors, beer trucks and sponsor booths, restaurants, inflatables/rides for the kids, live music and drinks at your fingertips. No matter what you love, you will be sure to find something to enjoy.

Nathan Benderson Park

Don’t forget we have a world-renowned rowing center in our backyard! June 1 you can swing by for the Sunshine State Games in paddling. June 5 through June 9 stop by for the US Rowing Youth National Championship. And, for America’s birthday (one day early, July 3), park your lawn chair and watch fireworks on the lake.

Sarasota FairGrounds

Every Saturday and Sunday, year round, head over to the fairgrounds to enjoy a swap meet. From food trucks to tools to homemade crafts and attire, this flea market and farmers market are sure to have at least one vendor that entices you.

Bradenton Marauders

Pick pretty much any day of the week and you can find a baseball game to go to. Snag some popcorn, peanuts and play ball.

So drop your piles of laundry (they’ll still be there when you get home) and head out with the family to spend some quality time together, because, it’s summer, y’all!

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