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Summer Activities for Children

Summer vacation is in full swing and Nevada City offers so many great activities for things to do for kids.  So regardless of what your family likes to do, here’s a list of all sorts of ideas of things to do.  And scroll down to the bottom for my great kid-centric giveaway!

Things to with Kids:

Water Activities:

Outdoor Adventures:

Jason Auld, owner of Mountain Recreation, loves taking his 3 kids outdoors during the summer season, “We love hiking, backpacking and camping in our vintage trailer. ”  Mountain Rec has clothing, camping gear, swimwear, camping gear and can help “gear up the family.”    If you’re interested in getting in the water at Scotts Flat Lake they offer kayak and SUP rentals, either from the shop in Grass Valley or out at the Day Use area by the campground on weekends.  Click here for information about their rental programs.  And if you want to try out the SUP, join the Wednesday evening races, free stand up paddle board available, races are open to all ages and abilities, so grab the family and have a picnic dinner by the lake, here’s a blog post from last year.

Grass Valley The Artist Workshop

Perhaps you’re looking for a summer camp, there are still lots of great programs happening, click here for a post from earlier this spring on the Summer Camp Fair, still time to check out the Food Love Project day camps, Mud Hut Art classes, Fox Walkers, Backstitch Sewing classes or The Center for Arts  programs.  Perhaps you want to be creative, try stopping by The Artist Workshop, either for a class or their drop in open session and leave with a new art project.  Maybe you want to learn a specific new skill, like a kid’s cooking class at Briar Patch Co-op?

There are a lot of great kid friendly events during the summer season, whether its The Children’s Festival (Friday, July 18th), The Sierra Storytelling Festival  (July 18-20) or the Nevada County Fair (August 6-10).  Otherwise take your kids to one of the many local farmers markets, First Friday Art Walks or Nevada City Summer Nights.  Perhaps you want to get tickets for the PAG performance of Alice in Wonderland or Quest Theaterworks’s  for The Secret Garden?  Don’t forget the free Nevada County Concert Band concerts at Pioneer Park, great family friendly outing.

And if you’ve made it this far, I’ve got a special treat for one lucky kid.  Post a comment on your favorite summer activity and one family will be 2 free movie passes to the Del Oro Children’s movie screenings, a free go-cart and mini golf at 49er fun park, a $15 gift certificate to The Artist Workshop and a free 2 hour kayak or SUP rental from Mountain Rec.  Winner will be announced on Wednesday, July 9th.

48 replies
  1. Cathy
    Cathy says:

    First Friday Artwalks, of course….kayaking at Scotts Flat and hiking Independence and Buttermilk Bend come in a close second and third. There are lots of littles in my life I could share these prizes with. 🙂

    • erin
      erin says:

      Cathy, I know someone who’d love to go play mini golf with you…. fun to see your kayaking photos of Scotts Flat, let me know if you put any of them on Pinterest.

  2. PeteK
    PeteK says:

    Thanks for the info Erin I’m always looking for ways to get the kids back up where I grew up to experience what I did as a kid;)

    • erin
      erin says:

      Thanks Pete, so many great things to do up here, I’m sure your kids would love to go have a day out in Nevada City and use up these prizes 🙂 Or go do one of the free activities….

  3. Ginny Knott
    Ginny Knott says:

    It was fun talking to you at the chamber on Saturday! I hope Cathy got you a large poster of Summer Nights. Keep up the fun blog. I enjoy your eye for photography!

  4. Cynthia Levesque
    Cynthia Levesque says:

    So many fun summer activites in NC it’s hard to chose a favorite! I love Bridgeport for its beauty and simplicity with little ones. Scott’s Flat lake is fun with the canoe. Treats is almost a daily visit with my six yr old and this very pregnant Mama. And, of course the First Friday Artwalk always has lots of fun for the whole family!

    • erin
      erin says:

      Thanks Cynthia for the comment, I agree, so many options, but great that we live in a kid happy community, and we can pretend that it’s the kids who wanted to go Treats, not us 🙂

  5. Diane Richards
    Diane Richards says:

    OMG, you don’t know what I would do in order to be the lucky kid that is the winner of this awesome Summer Activity package in Nevada County you put together for a lucky family.

    Me loves to hike the Buttermilk Bend Trail. You don’t know how excited I was when I heard that State funding was going to be made available to do the necessary repairs to the covered bridge! I so want to walk across it, again 🙂

    The Independence Trail is incredible. I am itching to get back and walk through the miner’s tunnel on the East Trail!

    Ice cream is my most favorite treat, anytime, but after some nice Summertime “Hot Hiking” nothing beats having some!

    • erin
      erin says:

      We can all channel our inner kids… you might really like seeing Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2? The Lego movie has a lot of great adult humor too…. Great to hear that some of the kid favorites are good for all ages.

  6. Tara
    Tara says:

    Hiking and going down to the river- or anything involving water are what gets us out and keeps the quarreling at bay.

  7. Valerie Cassity
    Valerie Cassity says:

    I moved to Grass Valley last August and have just discovered Purdon’s Crossing. I love it! A great place to take my daughter or to go have a skinny dipping adventure with my fiance, depending on what mood I’m in. Parking is not too bad, the hike is easy and lovely, and the people are very nice.

  8. Ingrid Knox
    Ingrid Knox says:

    We love taking the grand kids to the river when we get them up here. The Library has a great series of programs every summer. It is a great place to be a kid in Nevada City!

    • erin
      erin says:

      Glad to hear you get to experience some of the fun and games, as always, thanks for your tireless support of my blog project.

  9. Polly
    Polly says:

    So many to choose from! We love the river, lego camp, swimming at the park and summer concerts at Pioneer Park. But all my summer memories come to the river, river, river.

  10. Pam
    Pam says:

    Favorite summer activities would be swimming at the river (or at a kind friend’s pool) and listening to music. There are so many great music venues, but we are especially looking forward to Delhi 2 Dublin at WorldFest this year!

  11. Lois Ewing
    Lois Ewing says:

    Thanks for info Erin. FYI due to a grant for Quest Theaterworks production of The Secret Garden, all kids get in FREE when accompanied by a paid adult! The Secret Garden performs July 18, 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27, 2014 @ 6:00. Tickets available at The Briar Patch or online at

  12. Kate Strolle
    Kate Strolle says:

    We do a lot of SUPing on Scott’s Flat, and always go to the Wednesday night races. Super fun and always a great crowd of people. We also hit Pioneer Park pool to cool off and my son does the lessons in the evening. He just finished Circus camp at the Center for the Arts and will be attending a Fox Walkers camp in a few weeks. We live in such a beautiful place with so many outdoor activities. Hard for a kid (or parent) to get bored!!!

  13. David R
    David R says:

    The Children’s festival on July 18 made our son fall love with Nevada City. Otherwise we love fishing at Marsh Pond. Mini golf too!

    • erin
      erin says:

      Thanks David for the comment, good to see you guys at the Music in the Mountains concert, so many great things for kiddos to do in our town.

    • Naima
      Naima says:

      Don’t forget “Peter Pan”, opening this Thursday; taking my granddaughter. And Synthetic Unlimited is presenting Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” for “all ages”. We won’t miss PAG’s “Alices” either. Didn’t know about the SUP and kayak rentals at Scotts Flat. Thanks for the great list. We definitely like the farmer’s market! And endless swimming.

      • erin
        erin says:

        Thanks Naima, so great to expose kids to theater productions and there are some great options this summer for the little people.

  14. Jana H
    Jana H says:

    What a great list of activities. My kids are now old enough for most of these activities and we love Nevada county summers! Empire Mine, the library summer reading program, and ice cream at Treats are some of our favorites. We definitely need go to 49er fun park soon!

  15. sarah
    sarah says:

    My daughter loves 49er funpark, and it’s fun for the whole family checking out Empire Mine!

    • erin
      erin says:

      Thanks for the comment… I have to say that I had a whole new appreciation for Empire Mine after I took a tour with 2 minecraft addicts… who knew?

  16. Kelley
    Kelley says:

    Great list! So far we’ve down hiking, swimming in the Yuba River, kayaking at Scott’s Flat, and swimming at Pioneer park. There’s lots more to try! My two are still pretty young, but we will be busy with this list. Thanks!

    • erin
      erin says:

      So glad we could provide you with some more ideas, so many options and what I love is that some of these are worthy to revisit once the kids get older.

  17. Brooke M
    Brooke M says:

    We just went for a little bike ride on Pioneer Trail with our three littles and they loved it! Also, LOVE The Artist Workshp…. Such a fun place!

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  1. […] Outside Inn Free Veggie Cart, South Yuba River, Deer Creek Tribute Trail, Fall Colors,  Summer Things to do with Kids, National Trails Day and Uncorked.  There are so many amazing reasons to love our community, too […]

  2. […] live entertainment?  If you’re looking for more kid-friendly activities, check out my recent blog post on things to do with kids in the […]

  3. […] comment on this blog post and I’ll draw the winner on Monday, July 14th.  The winner of the Summer Things to Do with Kids package is Ingrid […]

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