Summer is here!
This is the time of year that the north coast of Ohio really shines. I have lived on the shores of Lake Erie for most of my life and now and wanted to share some of my favorites things to do and places to go especially if you have little ones coming along.
What more needs to be said? Cedar Point is an amazing amusement park right on the shores of Lake Erie. It is guaranteed fun for days for the young and the young at heart. My husband, kids, and I go several times a week during the summer as it is a twenty minute drive from my home. I would say it was fun for the kids when starting they were around one and a half, there are lots of little rides in the front (formerly Kid Arthur's Court) that are really toddler friendly.
If you take little ones or don't be sure to wear comfortable walking shoes and wear sunscreen, it is a long hot day on the pavement. Cedar Point is now cashless so plan accordingly. There are so many great dining options these days, my family favors BackBeatQue which is near the Gemini roller coaster. We can get two meals and feed all four of us, plus there are some healthier options like salad and rotisserie chicken. Cedar Point Shores (formerly known at Soak City) also has attractions for the little ones including some splash pad like activities and mini water slides. The pavement can get very hot so we put water shoes on the kids to avoid complaints of burning feet. Get there early to get a parking spot and claim a beach chair, it gets busy fast on these hot days.
Before my kids could swim it would give me some significant anxiety to have them at swimming pools where they could not touch the bottom. A great alternative to me having my kids attached to my back in a pool were some of our local splash pads. Sandusky and the surrounding areas have some very toddler friendly splash pads that allow non-swimmers to cool off and have some summer fun. Some of my favorites are at these places;
Amherst HealthPlex (https://www.loraincountymetroparks.com/amherst-healthplex)
Lions Park in Sandusky (https://www.ci.sandusky.oh.us/business_detail_T50_R22.php)
Crocker Park (https://crockerpark.com/splashpad/)
Erie Metro Live Steamers
These are such a small town America fun summer occurrence! These run on Route 6 West in Sandusky (right down the road from the Cedar Point Entrance) and are free to ride with donations graciously accepted. This club builds their tracks each year and takes you on all the train rides you want. My kids have enjoyed this one since they were small toddlers. They will be running on these days yet for the 2022 season; July 16th 10a-12p, August 6th 10a-12p, August 27th 10a-12p, September 24th 1p-5p, and October 22nd 3p-5p.
Seasonal Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Now is the time of the year to eat fresh here in Ohio. There are so many road side stands and farmers markets in the area that offer all the best of what Ohio grows, particularly fun are places where you can pick your own. June is a great time for strawberries and cherries, July and August will bring on amongst lots of garden favorites sweet corn and peaches. Into September you will start to see the local apple crops at the orchards in the area. Roadside stands are great in this area for getting fruit, vegetables, and sometimes even beautiful flowers and honey. Here are when some of our local farmer's markets take place;
Vermilion Ohio-Victory Park every Sat. from 10a-2p starting July 2nd-August 27th
Sandusky Ohio- Washington Park every Sat. from 8a-12p June 11th-Oct 29th
Support local farmers/gardeners and try the local produce, you will definitely taste the difference and won't regret it!
Beautiful Lake Erie
Our beautiful Great Lake offers some many fun things to do and majestic views. You can catch a ferry and head over to Kelly's Island or Put-In-Bay for the day. There is fun fishing on the Huron Pier for those without boats, if you have a boat the perch and walleye have been great in between Huron and Vermilion. The sunset over the lake is spectacular especially in the summer. Here are some of my favorite beaches;
Mentor Headlands--has a boardwalk, beach grass, and looks more like an ocean beach than the lake. It is really beautiful
Lorain Lakeview-has a kids playground on the beach, the lighthouse is really pretty too
Vermilion Main Street-right downtown within walking distance of the harbor town shops and dining
Old Woman's Creek Huron-Great spot for beach glass and the sunset cannot be beat
Nickel Plate Huron-very well maintained, volleyball and a play structure
There was an old saying I think geared towards tourism "Ohio, the heart of it all", which though kind of corny is true. If you are coming on vacation there is so much to do no matter what your interests are. I barely touched on places and things because I could just go on and on. Summer is the best time here to be able to enjoy the great outdoors and the fabulous Ohio summer weather.