A reader: I read your article on spring break travel tips. I was wondering if you know anything about things to do in our area. Time is limited so we can’t venture too far away but believe me my family needs to get away and relax. Any suggestions?
Action Line: As a matter of fact, why not stay close to home. Spring and summer seasons are the best time to get outdoors. Why not visit our national parks. Your BBB serving Central California and Inland Empire Counties has five, count them, five national parks within our service area. Yosemite, Kings Canyon, Joshua Tree, Sequoia, and Death Valley National Parks are all within driving distance. Your BBB is here to help. Use the link below to get valuable information on how to help plan your trip: fblinks.com/BBBparks.
Here you will find background information on the parks as well as links to information about wildlife, trails and plant life. You can visit the desert or the mountains.
Here are some helpful tips:
▪ Get everyone involved. Time together can bring a family closer. Exploring and experiencing the outdoors have great potential to create memories and traditions. I know these are kinds of experiences that grown children can cherish.
▪ Some children may not like the idea of camping. There are plenty of ways to help even the most resisting of children come to love camping. If you plan well, they will be asking when you will be going again.
▪ Start a family camping journal. Let the entire family participate in filling out the day’s activities. How about a family hike? That could make for some fun campfire conversations. You could also include sing-alongs, ghost stories, or a nightly game of charades, the after-dinner campfire is the perfect time to begin regular traditions that may be carried on in time. Smores and hot chocolate are always a hit. Have each child be “in charge” for a day, deciding what activities will be undertaken (swimming, hiking, games) that day.
▪ Make sure you create a chore list (cooking, setting up and cleaning up the campsite, fire building, gathering kindling) Obviously, depending on age and safety issues, mom and dad will be helping here. There are opportunities for children to learn while spending time outdoors. You could teach them about wildflowers, trees, plants, animals, animal tracks, birds, cloud types/weather, stars/astronomy, survival skills, knot-tying, fire-building and many more. Remember don’t feed the bears!
▪ You don’t have to sleep in a tent unless you want to. How about renting an RV or a cabin? Regardless of sleeping options, family camping trips have the potential to bring the whole family closer together and create lasting memories
Don’t forget to take lots of pictures.
Action Line is written by Blair Looney, president and CEO for the Better Business Bureau serving Central California. Send your consumer concerns, questions and problems to Action Line at the Better Business Bureau, 2600 W. Shaw Lane, Fresno, CA 93711 or firstname.lastname@example.org.