Ten summer fun guarantees for 2021
With last summer and all its COVID-related restrictions in the rear-view mirror, residents are now looking to make up for a lost time.
“Summer will be a lot more celebratory this year,” said Recreation Services Director Amy Markle. “The pool and community center are celebrating 60 years, and both the ice arena and Wood Lake Nature Center are celebrating 50 years. These are wonderful facilities and we’re excited to join residents in celebrating them.”
Throughout the community this summer, there are plenty of ways to be active, connect with your neighbors and try new things. From fresh produce at the farmers market to a brand new inclusive playground to gathering with your neighbors in August, we hope everyone can find some inspiration in this list of summer fun activities.
#1 Wish the outdoor pool a happy birthday
This summer, the Richfield outdoor pool is turning 60! The pool is fully staffed and ready to welcome visitors when it opens on June 11. Season passes will be for sale online or at the pool from June 1-10. The main pool is open daily, from noon to 7 p.m., with the wading pool and tot time beginning earlier in the day. Drop by on a hot day to enjoy the water slides, wading pool, snack bar and diving boards.
Pro tip: snag a chair early before they fill up. Otherwise, aim for the shade on the hill near the wading pool.
2) Explore Richfield’s parks
This summer, make it your goal to visit all of the city’s parks to test your skills on the monkey bars, basketball courts, zip lines, slides and much more. Did you know the Richfield parks system features a combined 12 miles of walking paths, 28 tennis courts, 5 volleyball courts and 20 sets of play equipment? Swing by Augsburg Park in late June to celebrate the opening of the new universally-inclusive playground, which is currently under construction. Facility rental is also available at various parks.
3) Shop the farmers market
The Richfield Farmers Market at Veterans Park has been in operation since the 1990s, making it one of the oldest farmers markets in the Twin Cities. Some of the vendors have even been there since the beginning. The market is held every Saturday from 7 a.m. to noon at the Veterans Park pavilion. Head there to greet the morning with colorful produce, hot breakfast options, tempting treats and some friendly faces.
Pro-tip: get to the market early for the best selection, and sign your kids up for P.O.P. Club to earn them $2 worth of fruits/veggies each time you visit the market.
4) Volunteer, run, jog, or sashay through the Urban Wildland 5k or Half Marathon
This year the Urban Wildland has a hybrid offering for their 5k and half marathon races. The 5k race will be held on the evening of July 30, with the half marathon on the morning of July 31. The race begins and ends at Veterans Park and journeys throughout the community and beautiful parks. Volunteers are always needed!
5) Cool off at the ice arena
An easy way to beat the heat is to head to the ice arena for a session of skating or drop-in hockey. Prices are modest and it is bound to be the coolest place you can find in the city all summer. Pre-register online or walk-in during open hours. Skate rental available. See the website for open skate and drop-in hockey hours.
6) Host your next party at Wood Lake Nature Center
Sign up now to host your next party at Richfield’s very own Wood Lake Nature Center. For children, the center offers the perfect birthday party package, which includes an hour of naturalist-led programming and two hours of private pavilion use. Various party themes are offered, perfect for kids ages 4-12. Groups of all ages can also rent the Emily Day Pavilion for outdoor gatherings with a capacity for 40 visitors.
7) Celebrate with your neighbors on Night to Unite
On Tuesday, August 3, neighbors across Richfield will gather with one another to celebrate National Night to Unite. If your block is hosting a registered block party, keep your eyes peeled for a visit from city leaders, police officers or firefighters. If you are unsure if your block will be participating, ask your neighbors or contact the city’s Public Safety Department, which coordinates the event.
Pro-tip: ask to have cones dropped off on your street in order to close off the space to traffic during your gathering.
8) Paddle your heart out at Taft Lake
Journey to Taft Lake on Richfield’s east side to try your hand at paddleboarding or kayaking. The paddle-share program allows the equipment to be rented by the hour to the general public. Youth can paddle with an adult in a tandem kayak. In addition, a fishing pier is available at Taft Lake for anglers who are looking for a local fishing spot.
Pro-tip: bring your own lifejacket, or call ahead to ensure availability.
9) Jam out on Tuesdays at the bandshell
This summer, live music makes its return to Richfield’s bandshell in Veterans Park. The Entertainment in the Park concert series kicks off on June 8 and hosts two concerts every Tuesday. Children’s concerts begin at 11 a.m., with entertainment for the whole family starting at 6:30 p.m. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets and get ready for some entertainment.
Pro-tip: don’t forget to bring your bug spray.
10) Impress your date at Veterans Park
For an easy date night or family night, head to Veterans Park for a variety of activities. Wheel Fun Rentals is on-site, offering an 18-hole mini-golf course, snack bar and bicycle rentals built for 2, 4, 6 or even 8 people. In addition, you can take walk around the lake, stop at the playground, or visit the Honoring All Veterans Memorial.
Pro-tip: check out the floating boardwalk through Legion Lake.