End Of Summer Bucket List By Mara Dobyns –

Looking to savor summer while it’s still here? Try some of these fun and unique seasonal activities in our area before it’s too late! Wether you want to stay close to home and check out a local swim class at the community pool in Susanville, or road trip it to Chico for their retro Drive in Theatre, this list is sure to keep you stoked on summer for the rest of the season.

1. Horseback Riding at 

Highlands Ranch Resort
(located just 9 miles from Lassen National Park) – For ages 5+ you can explore the majestic Child’s Meadow via horseback. However ages 5-6 will be “ponied” which means their horses will be tied behind an experienced wranglers horse. You and your group (up to 6 people at a time) won’t want to miss the stunning views of Lassen or the wildflowers growing around every corner. Currently rates start at $50 per person for a half an hour ride or $70 per person for the full hour. You can find more information and even book your ride at their website located here: http://www.hawksrides.com/

2. Honey LakeValley Community Pool
(located in Susanville) – Did you know that they offer swim lessons with sessions that start as late as August 15th and for ages as young as 4 months? It’s not toolate! Of course they offer lap swimming, shallow water exercise classes for those that don’t love to swim but are looking for a less strenuous work out, recreational swim, and family swim! All of which run until October! Family swim is open two week nights a week which means there is plenty of time for pool time after work and twice during the weekend if that’s more convenient for your busy schedule. Their daily drop in rates are $4 for youth and $6 for anyone 18+. Already know you’ll go more than once? Check out their 10 punch card which gets you in for the cost of 8 visits and twice for free! They are $32 for youth and $48 for adults or splurge and buy a summer pass! The summer pass grants you access for all three summer months from June-August and is $60 for youth, $100 for adults or just $300 for the entire family. Oh and did I mention that you can rent the pool and host your very own private pool party? Work, school, birthday, or whatever the occasion the pool is happy to accommodate and help you celebrate! Week day rentals are only offered during the spring and fall shoulder seasons but weekend rentals are available all pool season long. Weekend rentals are offered in 2 hour block increments with the cost starting at $200 for up to 30 swimmers and an additional fee if more lifeguards are needed for extra swimmers. Lastly, if you have a child interested in competitive swimming, they currently have two teams! For more information, and a complete list of sessions and times please visit their website here: https://www.honeylakepool.com

3. Farmers Markets
(Westwood, Susanville, Chico, and More) – Nothing tastes quite as pure or as fresh as just picked, homegrown produce, local honey, fresh farm eggs, seasonal specialties, or homemade baked goods. If you’re looking to find all the best, your best option is to attend a Farmers’ Market. Westwood hosts theirs on Friday evenings from 4:00-7:00 June-October on the lawn of Old Town Mercantile on 3rd & Ash Street. Susanville offers a handful of Thursday Evening Markets that feature a spectacular wine walk and every Saturday Morning June through the first weekend in October. Chico offers Wednesday Night Farmers’ Market as well as Saturday morning Farmers’ Market. Quincy offers one on Sundays, Beckwourth offers theirs on Fridays, while Shasta County Farmers and Redding each host theirs on Saturdays. To find more information and exact dates and times, check your local newspaper or make sure your location services are turned ON on your social media accounts and search events in your area.

4. Catch a show at the CaliforniaRegional Theatre or at the Drive In Theatre Both located in Chico
 Technically not seasonal but still a wonderful season to participate in these two five Star activities! Wether you’re catching a live performance put on by California’s Regional Theatre (Matilda made me cry pre-Covid and The Little Mermaid made me smile so much my cheeks hurt post-Covid) or pulling into park and chill with food and friends at the retro and charming drive in, you can’t go wrong! Although the theatre at the Drive In is currently under construction they are still hosting events and concerts on the weekends! Check out their websites for upcoming live performances, shows, and all other info. California Regional Theatre: https://crtshows.com  Drive In Theatre: https://www.meriampark.com/barnevents

Summer just wouldn’t be the same without the adrenaline of a jet ski ride, that and the freedom and excitement of being pulled on an inter tube. Spend a casual day at the lake with friends on the water, a rejuvenating, carefree, hair in the wind, shoes off, swimsuits on, music up experience.  Lake Almanor has two jet ski/boat rentals. Majors Outpost has been operating for over thirty years at Plumas Pines Resort. 530-259-2727; view all at majorsoutpost.com.  On the Lake Almanor Peninsula Knotty Pine Resort has a big line-up of watercraft for rent. Their expert and friendly staff is ready to serve you. 530-596-4545. View options at knottypine.net.

 6. Food Truck Friday in Reno, NV
Food Truck Friday is exactly what it sounds like, a fun night out for the whole family filled with food trucks, live entertainment, and a whole lotta summer fun. They feature over 40 gourmet foods, desserts, and local craft drinks. It takes place every Friday, June-August, from 4pm-9pm, at 1800 Idlewild Dr. – Idlewild Park in Reno, NV. Trust me, you don’t want to miss this! If you’re a foodie like me, you’re sure to love it. So bring your friends, beach chairs, and appetites, and come enjoy the taste of summer! For more information please visit: https://www.facebook.com/RenoStreetFood/

7. Bike or hike the Bizz Johnson Trail
The incredible Bizz Johnson Trail runs between Susanville and Westwood in Lassen County. Rich in history, the Bizz Johnson Trail follows the route of the old Fernley and Lassen Railroad line. See the Susan River Canyon up close and personal as you make your way through the beautiful trails and trees. Not a big biker? No problem! Backpacking works just as well. With plenty of spots to camp and explore along the way, this trail is sure to make your summer one you won’t soon forget. For more information and access locations: https://www.traillink.com/trail/bizz-johnson-national-recreation-trail/

8. Visit a Waterpark Sacramento, Redding.
Wether you’re splashing into Raging Waters in Sacramento and helping them celebrate thirty years of fun in their 800 foot lazy river or booking a cabana to lounge next to the wave pool at WaterWorksPark in Redding, no summer is complete without a trip to a water park! For more details, attractions, addresses, hours of operation, and pricing check out their websites below! Raging Waters in Sacramento: https://www.rwsac.com/?utm_source=google&utm_medium=OrganicGMB&utm_id=GMBtraffic WaterWorksPark in Redding: https://www.waterworkspark.com/cabana-reservation/ Redding: 530-246-9550 | Sacramento: 916-924-3747

9. Ridge Rider Mountain Coaster in Lake Tahoe 

If this bad boy isn’t already at the top of your summer bucket list, it should be! According to their website “this gravity-powered alpine coaster will exhilarate you and your family as it coasts through forest and natural rock formations. As always the views are incredible and the memories will be too! The coaster sleds fit up to two riders, so you can enjoy this activity with others.” Drivers must be at least sixteen years of age while riders can be as young as three. Prices range from $63-$93 depending on age, unless of course you’re a current 22/23 Heavenly Resort Season Pass holder than your discounted ticket price is just $35. For more details, hours of operation, and even purchasing tickets please visit their website here: https://www.skiheavenly.com/explore-the-resort/activities/epic-discovery/ridge-rider-mountain-coaster.aspx

10. Plan A Backpacking Trip
With Lassen National Volcanic Park and Mt. Shasta both being so close, not to mention the many lakes and forests nearby just waiting to be explored – there is no good reason not to plan your first backpacking trip. Start slow with a day trip and work up to overnight (I’m planning my next one for a full moon). Grab a buddy, pack a bag, and enjoy the adventure. To make sure you’re covering all of your bases, tips and tricks on backpacking, and even a free printable Backpacking Essentials Checklist, go here: https://gearjunkie.com/outdoor/backpacking/backpacking-checklist 

11. A Summer picnic –

Whether you prefer keeping it simple with a more classic picnic featuring a basket, blanket, and homemade goodies or spicing it up with take out and a kayak trip to a local island, no summer is the same without the enjoyment of eating outdoors in the sunshine and fresh air. In this photo my family and I did the latter. Buffalo Chips Pizza and Pub located in Westwood, supplied the take out. They have so many creative choices! From their gourmet pies (the zombie is one of my personal favorites), hot and cold sandwiches on their homemade bread (you can’t go wrong with a beefy cheese supreme), soup, and the most loved salad bar to their fountain sodas and Cheesecake Factory cheesecake, they have something to keep everyone happy. They even have jalapeño poppers, wings, and student specials! It was the perfect choice for our kayak trip to the island at Walker Damn. We got outdoors, explored, and still got our pizza fix in. Whatever your preference, don’t forget the drinks, sunscreen, bug spray, and possibly a light sweater depending on how late you plan on being out. Happy summer, my friends. Enjoy it while it’s still here. Buffalo Chips Pizza and Pub is located at 322 Birch Street, in Westwood with both indoor and outdoor seating. Their phone number is: (530)256-2412. For hours and more information: http://buffalochipspizza.com