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5 Summertime Family Traditions


4
Amusement Park Trips
Stay close to home and take the family to the amusement park.
Stay close to home and take the family to the amusement park.
Bernard Jaubert/Getty Images

A trip to an amusement park can be a chance for everyone to relax, laugh and play. If you can't swing a full-fledged vacation trip, a day at an amusement park can make a memorable "stay-cation."

If there's an amusement park close by, you might make enough daytrips to warrant a season pass. Or you might take a weekend getaway – staying at a hotel or campground – and spend one day at a park, trying one you haven't visited before. The biggest parks have accommodations. A family can spend days visiting Mickey and friends every summer.

Make the most of your visit:

  • Explore the park before you go. Most have websites. See what attractions are offered. Make sure they'll be operating.
  • Park concessions are pricey. Take water bottles and snacks if you can. Don't go in hungry, but don't overeat before riding the rides.
  • Take a backpack or fanny pack, not a purse.
  • Wear comfortable, safe shoes.
  • Take raingear, light jackets and dry clothes, especially if there are water rides.
  • Choose a park with attractions suited to your kids. Younger children can feel left out if rides are closed to them.
  • If you have an only child or a big gap between kids, let the kids invite a friend.
  • Get in line in time for the attractions you care about. Go on a weekday if possible, and start as early as you can.
  • If you let older children freelance, set meeting times and places.
  • Don't buy souvenirs until it's time to leave. You won't have to carry them all day, and the kids can decide what they really want.

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