End of Summer Bucket List — 10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends

The sun is about to set on summer and as it does we’ve prepared this ‘End of Summer Bucket List — 10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends,’ so you don’t miss a thing!

As a woman who has survived more than three decades of Midwest winters, I know how bittersweet this time of year is. You kind of want to hold all of the moments that you can while your kids are out of school and the nights are long and the days are warm. That said, this summer I was on a mission to maximize my time with my kids and really bask in the sunshine as much as possible. As we head into August, here is our family’s ‘End of Summer Bucket List – 10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends.’

And the best part for our single mom audience given the current state of the economy? Most are highly affordable activities that will fit within your existing budget.

End of Summer Bucket List — 10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends

Go berry picking…

This year, we’ve already hit the strawberry farm and we are going to make blueberry picking happen. We’ve missed the blueberry picking season way too often considering how much my kids love it. The best part is this activity is affordable AND you get to eat your pickings. If you have a tiny baker on your hands (I’ve got one!) there are so many delicious recipes that will keep your kiddo busy for many days after your outing.

End of Summer Bucket List-10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends

End of Summer Bucket List-10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends

Plan a picnic dinner and watch the sunset…

My kids and I have a few favorite local spots. We love the beach near our house…it has spectacular sunsets. Sometimes we pack a fancy charcuterie dinner and invite friends, other times we keep it simple and pick up Chick-fil-A or order our favorite pizza.

End of Summer Bucket List-10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends

Beach day…

I think this one is a non-negotiable and it is most likely TOTALLY FREE. I am a beach lover, my daughter considers herself a pool girl and well, my son just goes where he’s told…mostly ; ) Mom always picks a beach day and whether my little crew is fully on board or not I make it happen. It’s a perfect way to feel like you are really taking time to enjoy the weather and your kids without rushing. And a fun fact that I didn’t know until I wrote this article? National Beach Day is a real thing and it is August 30th…save the date!

10 Fun Things to Do the Last 4 Weeks of Summer

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IMG 0451Donuts & the sunrise…

We don’t do this often, I think the last time we had donuts and watched the sunrise was on Easter morning at an outdoor church service. It was the most beautiful, incredible morning and I want to relive it. I’m going to set the alarm, wake the children and pick some sweet treats from our favorite bakery. Complete with coffee and cozy blankets we will be all set to cuddle up and enjoy some really special quality time. Waking up early for this takes extra effort but I think the extra bit of effort that makes it a morning to be remembered for years.

Take a nature walk…

One of our favorite places to wander is Elawa Farm. We can be found on the trails at almost any point in the year (except for the coldest parts of winter). My kids have favorite places in the forest, hidden gems that we visit time and time again…something like our own secret treasure. Finding a new favorite place to roam and come back to time and again with your kids is a great way to help create rhythms in your home life that everyone looks forward to. It’s also just a great way to enjoy the outdoors and create a sense of play.

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Go to the outdoor movie theatre…

A trip to the outdoor theatre is just good for the soul. It feels like wholesome, old-fashioned fun and it might be an experience your kids have never had. There aren’t as many outdoor theatres around so you might want to plan this activity ahead. Some local cities/towns host outdoor movies at the park or waterfront that are completely free and open to the public.

Attend a free local fest or concert…

Our town hosts weekly concerts on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We don’t/can’t attend every week but we always make sure to get to one at the end of summer. Our favorite festival is Lake Forest Days. It takes place during the week and so I make sure give myself the day off and we attend the parade and carnival that follows. Its’ complete with funnel cakes and cotton candy and we simply CANNOT WAIT to go this year. A great way to find local events like this is on Facebook or Eventbrite.

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Hotel night somewhere local…

I know this one is a splurge but if you can afford it, its money well spent for a little getaway. Choose a nearby local town or city with fun things to check out and get excited to explore. Plan your time carefully or don’t plan a thing. We have a favorite hotel in Lake Geneva that we choose because they have a gorgeous (and not too crowded) pool. And the best part for mom? There is full bar/restaurant service so I can have a glass of wine while the kids sip on frozen beverages and enjoy lunch, poolside. For single moms on a budget: I suggest looking at prices on Sunday through Thursday as the rooms are usually cheaper and its less crowded.

Kiddie Pool + Fancy Kiddie Cocktails…

Another fun way to live within your means and enjoy a relaxing day at home. If you don’t’ have a kiddie pool you pick one up at Target or Walmart for under $25. We love the Minidip pools (yes, we’ve gone through a couple because my then toddler poked it) and I definitely suggest them if you are looking for a cute, comfortable pool that feels a tad more luxurious. Top it off with fancy—and of course completely homemade-kiddie cocktails or popsicles (use this recipe with your blueberries) and no one will complain about spending one of the last precious days of summer at home.

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Don’t Forget an Ice Cream Night…

Have your kiddos take care of the dishes (if they are following a chore chart), and then head out for a family ice cream night. Pure and simple fun makes the best summer memories. Keep it family or invite your single mom friends…the more the merrier!

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And one EXTRA idea for your end of summer bucket list: Moms night out (or in)!

Last but not least, you need a mom’s night out or in. Depending on what you can afford, make sure that you plan an evening for you to look forward to with a girlfriend or two before summer comes to a close. It can be expensive getting out because hiring a sitter and going to a restaurant isn’t a cheap combo. If that’s the case invite a girlfriend or two over, pick up some of your favorite bubbly (Barefoot is a great brand if you’re on a budget) and make or order pizza. A night for mom to unwind doesn’t have to break the bank but it DOES NEED to include friends.

end of summer bucket list

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Enjoyed our “End of Summer Bucket List-10 Fun Things to Do Before Summer Ends?’

Please tell us how you plan to spend the end of summer with your kids! Let us know in the comments below and share a pic! Our single mamas love ideas and advice : )


My name is Jenna and I am the founder of Single Mom Spot. I've been a single mom for almost 10 years now. I'm a Christian and mama to two kids that I love like crazy. I started this site because I know how difficult single motherhood can be...and also, how beautiful. I believe that single motherhood helped make me into the best version of myself as a woman and mom. My hope, is that through a connection point like Single Mom Spot, women can share their experiences and grow together. What an amazing thing if every single mom could live her best life as a woman and mother right now, in the middle of her most challenging life circumstance. How bold. How beautiful. How unforgettable. Thank you for reading and supporting Single Mom Spot.