When we were younger, we were guilty of saying the phrases “I’m soooooo bored” or “There’s nothing to do” during summer. But now that some of us can drive or have friends that drive, we can explore the town of Tumwater more than just exploring our backyard. You may think that the city of Tumwater or Olympia is dull, but if you look deeper into the cities, you’ll find numerous fun activities to do.
For those who don’t mind spending a little money, great activities to do may include going to the drive-in movies, playing miniature golf, going to a baseball game, or going to the zoo.
If you and your friends are wanting to watch a movie but not be inside, Skyline drive-In Theater in Shelton might be the perfect place for you. Skyline Drive-In is open Friday-Sunday. It is a fun place to be with friends and watch a movie outside in the bed of a truck. There’s 2-3 movies within one showing and there’s a snack hut incase you get hungry during the movies. To make it feel more like home and comfortable, bring blankets and pillows and create a makeshift bed so everyone can pile in and enjoy a movie. But be sure the weather is looking good that night, or you might not be able to see the movie.
If you’re more of a daytime activity person, get a group of friends and go mini golfing at Marvin Road Mini Golf and Batting located at 2831 Marvin Rd NE Olympia, WA 98516. This golf course is surrounded by nature, so it’ll be very enjoyable. For $7.00 per person, you play a round of 18 holes. Estimated time to complete all 18 holes is a hour. Marvin Road Mini Golf isn’t just about mini golfing, you can also go to the driving range, the batting cages, and the rock climbing tower. It won’t be hard to find an activity here that doesn’t fit someone’s interest.
Going to a Mariner or Rainier baseball game are always exciting and fun to go to. Depending on where you want to sit, tickets can get pretty expensive, but if you don’t mind sitting on the second or third level tickets might be around the price of $45 to $50 each. For prices like that it will be worth it to pay. Even if you or a friend don’t necessary like sports or like watching sports games, the experience will still be great. Safeco Stadium gives you an amazing baseball experience with their garlic fries, hotdogs, and Dip-n-Dots. Get there early and you might even catch a ball from batting practice before the game!
Remember going to the zoo as a little kid? Remember how fun it was to see all the different kinds of animals? Dig into the little kid in yourself and go and explore the only combined zoo and aquarium at Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium. See all different types of animals from elephants to sharks. There’s more than just seeing the animals, go into the aquarium area and touch the starfish and other small sea creatures. Get a up-close experience with a camel and take a ride on the backs of these incredible animals. The zoo is a perfect place to see animals you wouldn’t normally see in the Northwest.
For those who have a tight budget or don’t feel like spending money, great activities to do that don’t cost money is swimming and spending the day/night walking around downtown Olympia.
When it starts to get hotter taking a dip in a river or a lake is always the best way to cool off. Close by lakes/rivers are Summit Lake, Pioneer Park, and the River Ranch. Summit Lake is perfect for those who have a boat and like to go tubing or waterboarding. Summit Lake is relaxing to be at and a great place to hang out with friends. At Pioneer Park, you can wade in the water or take an inner tube and float down the river. The water may be cold but it’s a fun ride to take with family or friends. It may seem like a short ride, but with all the twists and turns in the river, it takes about an hour to an hour and a half to float the river. Be careful not to get stuck in the trees or you might lose your group. The River Ranch is another great area to swim. There’s different spots around the place to be alone and have your own spot and there’s places where you can be out in the open where most people are. At the River Ranch there’s a drop off where you can jump off the edge into the water. It’s great for doing flips into the water or for doing cannon balls. There’s plenty of shade to stand in, as well as sun to relax and tan in.
Downtown Olympia is an amazing place whether it’s during the day or night. Walking around the town may seem boring because there’s nothing to see, but if you know where to go there’s a lot you can do. Talk a stroll down the boardwalk by the docks and see all the boats and the sea creatures in the water. After you get to the end, right across the street is the Farmer’s market, where you can walk around different booths and see what farmers and plants produce or make on their own. Or you can go into the heart of the town and walk into stores you’ve never heard of or never seen before and look around at their products. Glass and stores with paintings are some of the best places to walk through and see the art people can make.
If you ever find yourself bored, there’s plenty of things to do and see you just have to know where to look.
By Taylor Elliott