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Keep it Cool: Senior Friendly Summer Activities

There’s nothing quite like summer in Chicago and its surrounding suburbs. It only takes one summer season to remember why we all choose to endure the long winters; the warm temperatures, the blue skies, and even the summer thunderstorms make the snowy winters worth it.

Even though this year might be a bit different because of safety measures brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, there are still plenty of sweet summer traditions to enjoy throughout the Northwest Suburbs. There are plenty of senior-friendly activities throughout the Park Ridge and surrounding areas that you can enjoy. Here are a few of our favorites.

Hit the Trails

Tie up your tennis shoes and head outside to explore. Park Ridge and its nearby suburbs feature excellent and accessible trail systems, including the Des Plaines Trail System and Wildwood Nature Center. You can take a walk or bring your binoculars to check out local wildlife. If you are hoping to catch a glimpse of birds and avoid the hot weather, try venturing out in the morning hours. Just be sure to grab a bottle of water to enjoy after your morning cup of coffee so that you can stay as hydrated as possible.

Try New Cuisine

This summer brings most of Chicagoland into Phase 3 of reopening, which means restaurants are allowed to safely serve patrons outside. Dining al fresco is the perfect thing to do during the summer; call your friends to see if they would meet you at your favorite spot for brunch or dinner. If you don’t feel quite ready to dip your toe back into restaurants just yet, be sure to take advantage of the curbside pickup or delivery options that nearly every local restaurant is offering. Challenge yourself to try a new cuisine each month!

Pick Up a New Outdoor Game

Chicagoland summer backyard parties are full of outdoor games. Though you may not be attending huge family barbecues this year, you can still enjoy the outdoors by taking up a new outdoor game hobby. Try favorites like bocce or kubb (Viking chess), or something new, such as ladder ball. 

Start a Garden

It’s not too late to start a flower, vegetable, or herb garden in your yard or on your porch. In fact, you can find larger starter plants in your local nurseries or garden centers, which can be especially beneficial if you don’t have a green thumb. Less crowded garden centers can also mean you have the chance to ask more questions from the professionals who work there as you choose plants that are nearly failure-free.

Hit the Farmers Markets

One of the best parts of living in the Chicago suburbs is that you are never too far from a farmers market. Though markets have a few new rules this year to keep patrons extra safe, you can still enjoy grabbing local products from local farmers and trying new and tasty produce.

Stay Social

No matter what senior activities you decide to participate in this year, make sure you are making a conscious effort to stay connected to friends and family. Most of us have practiced safe social distancing since March, and older adults are at an increased risk of feeling isolated, lonely, and depressed. If you are feeling disconnected from those you love or are experiencing depression or anxiety, talk to your loved ones and your physician. 


Choosing to retire in a senior living community can give you the socialization you desire in a safe and helpful environment. At Summit of Uptown, our residents enjoy daily activities and events with their friends. Check out what’s happening in our community by learning more about our events or by subscribing to our local blog.

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Josephine Bernero

About the Author: Josephine Bernero

Jo prides herself on making sure that residents make a smooth transition to Summit and enjoy everything that summit of Uptown has to offer.