9 Fun Ways to Celebrate the End of Summer

End of Summer Fun You Can’t Miss

The days are getting shorter, which means fall is right around the corner. It’s the time of year that most people dread… the last days of summer. Before you go back to the grind, you still have time to celebrate the end of summer.

Summer has a lot of appeal. Great weather. Lots of time outdoors. People are happy! And, no school for the kids.

That’s why it’s so hard when it comes to an end each year.

Summer officially ends on September 22nd, but school starts long before that. If there’s something your kids want to do on the kids summer activities list, now is the time.

Or, maybe it’s you who needs a little more fun before the sun sets on the season.

9 Activities to Celebrate the End of Summer

How do people celebrate the end of summer? You do all the things you can’t do in the colder months. Things like playing in the water, enjoying summer foods and spending time outdoors.

Do whatever makes the summer memorable for you.

Here are a few ideas to celebrate the end of summer.

1. Back to School BBQ

It’s a cookout y’all! Get your kids excited about heading back to school!

If you have a family with a lot of kids, then make it a family event. If you’re more social, open it up to everybody. As a nice treat, invite the friends your kids only see during the school year.

A BBQ or picnic is in keeping with the summer vibe, but it could be a pizza party too. Don’t go to a lot of fuss. Make it a pot luck.

Have everyone pitch in! It can be a BYOM (Bring Your Own Meat) for the grill with community side dishes, or each family can pack their own picnic.

Getting together with their friends before school starts will help get the kids excited to head back.

2. Host an Epic Water Fight

Before you put all of the water toys away, go cray! Invite everyone… friends, family, neighbors. Adults, this is for you too!

Tell everyone to bring their water toy of choice.

Organize teams before you go to battle. Teams can be mixed, adults and kids, or separated. Figure out a way to differentiate teams, like colored bandanas or t-shirts.

Fill up those water balloons and super soakers and have fun!

Make sure you do it in an open space to reduce the likelihood of injury and don’t trip over the little ones.

3. Outdoor Movie Night

Outdoor movies are so much fun! If you can, show one in your backyard.

Movie selections will depend on the age of the audience. But, in the outdoor setting, everything will be fun to watch.

It helps if you’re already set-up with an outdoor entertainment system. If not, they have inflatable movie screens to purchase or rent. Or a white sheet or clear wall can also do the trick.

Then you just need a projector and your movie of choice and a place to sit.

Even if it’s just the family, you can make it an experience. Match movie nibbles to the them of the film you’re watching. Dress up! You can have a lot of fun with it.

Sound carries, so just invite the neighbors so they can’t complain. They can bring the popcorn.

Photo by: Kristen Prahl, Getty Images

4. Backyard Wine Tasting

I am always looking for an excuse to have a charcuterie board like the one’s from That Lemonade Life. Who doesn’t? What better way than to host a wine tasting?

If you want something more festive, how about different flavors of summer sangria using seasonal fruit? If wine is not your thing, beer or tequila would work as well.

Have your guests each bring a bottle (or 2) of something to share. Create menu items that pair well with the beverage in question. You can go fancy, or casual depending on your mood. (ex. grilled pizza/ flat bread, charcuterie, ceviche, tapas, etc.)

As for the guest list? Keep it small or make it a party! Here’s an idea. If you have access to the class contact list for school, consider inviting the parents of your little one’s new classmates to get to know each other.

If kids will be in attendance, create a mocktail just for them using the same summer fruits and add something fizzy.

5. Tourist for a Day

Be a tourist for a day close to home. How often do you explore close to home? Not very often, I’m sure.

If your area is like mine, some businesses are only open for the summer season. Outdoor and farmer’s market’s for example will be closing up shop soon.

Don’t miss your chance to support your local businesses while you can. You can discover local artisans, pick up some delicious food, and socialize with people in your community.

Bonus! Crowds thin out toward the end of the season, so you might even snag a great deal!

6. Frozen Treat Party

Who says you have to wait for a birthday to have an ice cream party? Certainly not someone that loves ice cream!

Ok, I know that you can enjoy frozen treats any time of year, but it just hits differently in the summer. A bite of that icy cold dessert feels like bliss on a hot summer day.

So, while the weather is still on your side, get friends together for a frozen treat party of your choice!

Ask guests to bring a carton of ice cream or some delicious toppings.

Frozen Treats Party Ideas

  • Build Your Own Ice Cream Sundae
  • Ice Cream Cones
  • Banana Splits
  • Snow Cones
  • Gelato
  • Build Your Own Milkshakes
  • Popsicles
Photo by: vkuslandia, Getty Images

7. Canning Party

Quick! Berries and tomatoes are heading out for the season!

Grab what you can and have a good old fashioned canning party.

If you’re a gardener, you want to reap the rewards of your harvest without wasting a thing. You can also just take advantage of great deals at the super market or farmer’s market and stock up.

Get your friends and family together and can the sweet fruits of summer. It’s a great way to socialize and get everyone involved, even the littlest ones. Kids can design labels and help squish the tomatoes!

Everyone that pitches in supplies and labor gets to take home some jam and tomato sauce to enjoy over the fall/ winter.

If it’s too late where you live to do this one this year, plan it for next year.

8. Golden Flip Flop Awards Night

Wind up your summer with a family picnic and awards ceremony. Call it anything you want, but make it a tradition!

Enjoy time together to talk about the highlights of the summer and look at pictures together.

Give small awards based on the adventures you shared together. The awards can be sentimental, simple or even cheesy. You don’t have to give anything tangible if you don’t want to.

Bragging rights are a gift that never expires in families. Years after an event, the winner gets to lord over their victory for all to hear about – repeatedly.

Golden Flip Flop Award Categories

  • Worst Sunburn
  • Best Napper
  • Biggest Cannonball
  • Night Owl
  • Early Bird
  • Best S’mores
  • Happy Camper (Best Attitude)

9. Chase the Sun

In some parts of the world, the end of summer means the end of the sun for most of the next 2 seasons.

This means you will have few, if any, chances to see a sunrise or sunset for a long time. So, why don’t you chase the sun?

Head to a place with a wide open eastward view for sunrise. Enjoy watching as it rises to greet the day.

Then, head in the opposite direction towards an equally open, westerly view for dinner or dessert and the sunset.

Fill the rest of your day with a fun activity that will fit in with your itinerary for a fun day trip. Perhaps a day at the beach or the lake?

More End of Summer Ideas

  • Stargazing
  • Grilled Dessert (ex. grilled shortcake, grilled peaches over ice cream, etc.)
  • Float the River
  • Go on a Road Trip
  • Picnic Under the Stars
  • Backyard Glow Party (glow sticks, flashlights, glow in the dark face paint)
  • Backpack Drive

Final Thoughts: Celebrate the End of Summer

Parents, you made it! You survived the summer. It’s time to celebrate!

If you take a deep breath, you just might smell the fall in the air. The leaves may not be changing yet, but they’re not too far off.

Before getting started on that back to school routine, be sure to celebrate the end of summer.

Take the opportunity to spend talking with friends long into the evening after the sun goes down. Invite friends over for an outdoor movie night or back to school barbecue.

I’m sure you have a list of things that you meant to get around to this summer but there just wasn’t enough time. But, if you’ve run out of ideas, I’ve provided you with 9 to kick things off.

It’s your last chance to kick off your shoes and feel the sand between your toes.

It’s a good time to have a good time. Cheers!

How are you winding up the summer? I can’t wait to hear all about your plans in the comments.

6 thoughts on “9 Fun Ways to Celebrate the End of Summer”

    1. Thanks, Vanessa! No reason not to see the summer off with one or two fun things before fall arrives and offers different opportunities for fun. Thanks for stopping by!

      ~ Cassie

  1. I dread the end of summer – not so much because it is the start of fall but because it means I will have to endure another bitter winter before warm weather returns. Celebrating the end of the season is such a good idea. You have come up with so many ideas that I would never have thought of. My children are adults now, so I fancy being a tourist for a day or hosting a Golden Flip Flops Award Night – with wine on tap!

    1. Hi Belinda, First of all, I LOVE the idea of Golden Flip Flops Award Night with wine! That would make for a great time. Maybe roast a different family member each year. That could be so much fun! I happen to love the fall, but no much a fan of winter, so for me, I’m all for skipping right over it. I hope you get out there and celebrate what’s left of summer in a fun and memorable way.

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting,
      Cassie

    1. Hi Melissa, Backyard glow parties are a great hit! There are so many glow in the dark options to make it fun for everyone. You could even get the pets involved. Highly recommend!

      ~ Cassie

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