via Cincinnati Parks
1. Slide on a box at Summit Park
Located in Blue Ash, Summit Park is the park of the future, if your vision of the future is as heavily influenced by Star Trek as mine is. Slabs of cardboard are provided for sliding down the park’s faux-grass slopes, and you can hop right off onto a world-class climbing structure. Summit Park, 4335 Glendale-Milford Rd., Blue Ash, blueash.com/departments/parks_and_recreation/summit_park/index.php
2. Get soaked at the interactive water park in Washington Park.
Beats a sprinkler in the backyard any day. Washington Park, 1230 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, washingtonpark.org/features-of-the-park/interactive-water-park
3. Shake your sillies out at story time
Rhyming and songs are just as critical to early literacy as exposure to books, and local libraries are on it. The Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County offers story times for all ages at all of their branches, and once your toddler gets moving and shaking with a librarian, you’ll wonder why you ever paid for those Kindermusik classes. Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County, cincinnatilibrary.org
4. See a movie in the park
This time-honored tradition is being carried out at parks all over the Greater Cincinnati area, including The Goonies (never say die!) at Bellevue Beach Park, The Boxtrolls and Big Hero 6 at the Colerain Park Amphitheatre, and every movie you’ve ever loved during Washington Park’s summer cinema series. Sandlot, anyone?
5. Share a picnic at Spring Grove
Scenic and serene, Spring Grove Cemetery is also a nationally recognized arboretum and the perfect spot for a quiet lunch and a stroll (or popsicles on a respect-for-the-dead run). Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum, 4521 Spring Grove Ave., springgrove.org/spring-grove-cemetery.aspx