5 Ways to Have an Amazing Memorial Day Weekend

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There are all sorts of exciting Memorial Day weekend events happening in Atlanta! From fireworks to art fests to concerts, you and your family will have lots of choices. You and your kids won’t want the weekend to end. Scroll on to see our favorite Memorial Day picks!

1. Watch Fireworks at Stone Mountain Park

Check out other fun attractions during the day like mini golf and a scenic railroad, but then prepare for an awesome lazer and firework show at Stone Mountain Park at 9:30pm. This event runs from May 27 - 30 and the whole family will love it!

 

2. Explore the Alpharetta Arts Streetfest

The Alpharetta Arts Streetfest is a great way to be outside and explore new, local art! But if the kids aren't loving it, there will be kids activities like face painting and parrots to check out and, of course, lots of delicious food options to try. This event will happen rain or shine on May 28 and 29 from 10am - 5pm. 

3. Enjoy a Memorial Day Concert

The Alpharetta Symphony Orchestra is putting on a Roaring '20s free Memorial Day Concert! Bring your friends, family and a blanket because the show starts at 7:30pm on May 30!

Venardos Circus

4. Have a Blast at the Yaarab Shrine Circus

The Yaarab Shrine Circus is only here until May 30, so get your tickets now and enjoy an amazing experience! Check the schedule for various event start times. 

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5. Check Out the Summer Bash at the Children's Museum

The children's museum is having a Summer Bash from May 28 - 29 and you won't want to miss it! There will be summer-themed fun and games, ooblek science stations and art creation stations as well as a summer dance party. This is an event your kiddo will love!

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Keep this list in your back pocket for the dreaded day when the “I’m bored” sentiments take over your otherwise inquisitive child. These sidewalk games will get the kids outside and having fun as they include sidewalk chalk games, things to do with bubbles, new ways to use hula hoops and more. Your front yard has never seen this much action, we are sure of it!

1. Make some bubbles. Whether you make your own bubbles or grab a giant bottle from the grocery store, bubble activities are super fun to do on the driveway. Check out this bubble maker that will blow the bubble for you (and keep you from passing out). 

2. Paint a pet rock. Paint and rocks are two ingredients that are easy to come by for outside activity. When your little artist is done decorating, follow our pet rock care guide how-to for her new pet and set up your rock crew in the front yard for all passersby to see. 

3. Learn to skateboard. This retro sport is back in style and we love that. Do a little research on the best-sized skateboard for your little groms and make sure you get them all decked out in safety gear before you build those driveway ramps. 

4. Play with hula hoops. Who says you have to have moves like Jagger to have fun with a hula hoop? Check out these boredom-busting hula hoop games by Learn Play Imagine for inspiration—you’ll be amazed at the creative new ways you can play with one of the oldest toys imaginable.

5. Inspire your neighbors with sidewalk chalk. Writing messages like "good job!" and "I'm proud of you!" will bring a smile to your neighbors' faces as they walk by your house. 

6. Roll it out with a tricycle race. Ready, set, go! Riding bikes is an energy-burning outdoor activity for kids. From obstacle course to tag team follow our how-to on how to change up the track.

7. Get out the jump ropes. When it comes to the old-school fun that will leave you breathless—from both giggles and activity—there’s nothing that outdoes a round of jump rope. Check out these six games that work for every age and skill level to jog your memory of just how it’s done.

 

8. Draw chalk art photo props. Is there a kid out there who doesn’t like seeing themselves in a silly photo? With chalk, you can create any backdrop you wish, and even draw your kids right into the pictures. Fourth of July? Add a top hat and walking cane and Sam becomes Uncle Sam!

9. Make a sidewalk chalk obstacle course. This is great for gross motor skills and you may even see the mail carrier giving it a try when you add a sidewalk chalk obstacle course in front of your house. Hands On As We Grow has great step-by-step instructions on how to set it up. 

10. Get out the roller skates. These are totally making a comeback this summer and we are pulling out our rainbow headbands for it. Order your little ones some roller skates and the safety gear to go along with them and teach them how to shoot the duck! 

11. Wash a car. This sidewalk game is a win-win for everyone. Get out the bubbles and spray hose and get the minivan all shined up. Kids can even bring out their own toy trucks to join in on the fun. 

12. Make ice paint. We all love food on a stick, so why wouldn’t we adore paint on a stick, too? Just mix a little water with non-toxic paint and stick it in the freezer, either in solo cups or ice cube containers. Add a popsicle stick halfway through freezing, then pop the cubes out and you’re ready to go! This is a great activity for the driveway on a hot day. 

13. Have a water balloon fight. When the temperatures soar, so will the spirits if you’ve got a bag of water balloons handy. No balloons? No problem. Just turn the hose on and play water tag with the hose and give your front yard plants a drink. 

14. Set up your hopscotch. This one will bring you back to your school days. Using painter's tape or chalk, set up hopscotch and get ready to play! 

15. Build your own tetherball. Get yourself a pole and an old tire and you'll be on your way to set up this fun activity. The DIY Network has the full scoop on what you'll need to get this mobile game set up in your front yard. 

16. Use the windows as a creative space. Washing windows just got a lot more creative. Give your kids brushes and spray bottles, and watch them paint, clear, and paint again. 

17. Set up the basketball hoop. Whether you opt for one installed above your garage or a free-standing hoop for the shorties, there are tons of fun basketball games that will get the kids moving. Check out this list from active.com that includes tons of ideas beyond HORSE. 

18. Paint with squirt guns. This is a fun way to use those old squirt guns you have around the house. Fill them up with chalk paint to paint the sidewalk or check out this idea from Fireflies + Mud Pies for making art that you can hang up on your fridge. 

19. Play boxball. This classic sidewalk game is a little bit like ping pong, using a large rubber ball. Slap the ball back and forth between sidewalk squares; the first person to reach 21 is the winner! See the rules here

20. Create a scavenger hunt. You can make this as easy or hard based off of what you have in your yard. But no matter what, your kids will love searching!

—Taylor Clifton, Kate Loweth, Nikki Walsh & Shelley Massey

 

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Parenting. We could all use a manual every now and then, regardless of our kids’ ages. But it can sometimes be especially tricky for those who find themselves new to the game with a brand-new baby at home. Whether you’re hitting a wall because of too many consecutive sleepless nights or you’re feeling fantastic and are looking for a place to get out and strut your stuff, we’ve got the inside scoop on new Atlanta parent resources that you’ll be glad to know.

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If You Need Emergency Care

We hope you never need emergency care, but if you do, Children’s Hospital of Atlanta offers not only urgent care, but its network of pediatric specialists is second to none. So whatever takes you to the ER will be treated by pediatric specialists in the area of concern, all within the same system.

Pro Tip: You can check the wait times at all CHOA emergency departments and urgent care centers online before deciding where to go.

Children’s Egleston Hospital
1405 Clifton Road NE

Children’s Hughes Spalding Hospital
35 Jesse Hill Jr. Drive SE

Children’s Scottish Rite Hospital
1001 Johnson Ferry Road NE

Plus additional locations.

Online: choa.org

mom snuggling baby
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If You Need to Get Baby on a Schedule

Moms on Call was founded in Atlanta by two pediatric nurses who decided that babies really should come with instruction manuals, so they created a simple and easy-to-follow guide addressing parents’ most common curiosities and concerns. Now they’ve written three books, created three video courses, built two apps and have a flourishing network of consultants who do in-person visits and offer hands-on advice about optimizing a baby’s schedule and work towards sleeping through the night.

Online: momsoncall.com

If You Need a Delivery Service

When you have a little one at home, the wildest thing happens: you literally run out of time to run out for an errand—which is why we’ve got your back. These are our favorite grocery and meal kit delivery services, but you also need to know that Shipt will deliver (often within 2 hours) from stores like Target for when you need an emergency diaper delivery, and Instacart and Shipt will pick up groceries (and wipes) from Costco, regardless of your membership status. And if you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can get 2-hour grocery delivery from Amazon Fresh.

If You Need a Sitter

We get it. Leaving your precious bundle in the hands of a stranger is sometimes a hard pill to swallow. But nevertheless, sometimes you have to do it. For a babysitting service that gives you the opportunity to read what previous reviewers have written about their experience with each sitter, try Bambino Sitters. It’s an app-driven service that allows you to plug in your needed hours, preferences, and rate, and then you wait to be contacted by vetted sitters who meet those terms. Or, the app Usit (which is a mashup of “university” and “sitter” has a pool of Oglethorpe, Georgia State, and Emory students (primarily) who also similarly reply to requests for sitting jobs by parents. Other options include First Steps Network, an Atlanta-based company that connects trained sitters to parents’ job requests, and Care.com, which requires an annual joining fee.

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If You Need a Calm Place to Nap & Walk

Big Trees Forest Preserve, Sandy Springs
This urban forest includes three hiking routes—one of which is a mere one-mile loop that meanders beneath white oak trees—and is open sunrise to sunset, seven days each week. There is ample free parking. Dogs on leashes are welcomed in the Forest.

7645 Roswell Rd NE
Online: bigtreesforest.com

Island Ford Trail, Sandy Springs
Find it in the Island Ford Park, nestled among oversized boulders on the banks of the Chattahoochee. The walk is a two-mile loop that takes you past a waterfall and is manageable for all ages.

1978 Island Ford Pkwy.
Online: sandyspringsga.gov

Dunwoody Nature Center
This well-maintained 1.5-mile woodland loop gains a bit of altitude and is unpaved, but we’ve successfully traversed it with a rugged stroller. There are plenty of well-planned activities—ask at the Nature Center about the geocaching app and treasure hunt—to keep the big ones interested while also being easy to navigate for shorter legs.

5343 Roberts Dr.
Online: dunwoodynature.org

Chastain Park
This Buckhead staple has enjoyed renovation upon renovation and is now a happening hot spot nestled beside the running path, golf course, tennis courts, and baseball diamonds. With multiple rolling slides, nest swings, musical instruments, a treehouse, pavilion, and restrooms, this park is a sure-fire win.

4001 Powers Ferry Rd.,
N. Atlanta
Online: chastainparkconservancy.org

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If You Need Caffeine After a Long Night

As that old saying goes, “The days are long, but the years are short.” Well, sometimes the nights feel like they might never end. After a long night awake with your little one, you’ll need to pack up and head out for an early morning caffeine kick to get you through the day.

Land of a Thousand Hills Coffee Company
The doors are open, and the coffee is brewing at 7 AM. There’s a large patio in the back with pavers and grass that gives kids a place to play and run around, and your fur baby is welcome on the patio, too.

352 S Atlanta St,
Roswell
Online: landofathousandhills.com

ParkGrounds
When you need some fresh air after a long night in, head to the newly renovated patio area that offers shaded tables, hot coffee and even a little free library if you get a minute to read. Bring your family dog, and everyone will have someone to play with.

142 Flat Shoals Ave SE
Atlanta
Online: parkgroundsatl.com

—Angelica Kajiwara & Shelley Massey

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If staying at home has you feeling like you’re climbing the walls, we suggest climbing a treehouse instead! Live out your Swiss Family Robinson dreams at one of these epic vacation rentals for families that will satisfy every kid’s wish to sleep in a treehouse. Kids will love waking up in the trees while parents can enjoy modern conveniences like real bathrooms (YES) and coffeemakers. Scroll through to find the perfect off-grid adventure!

PACIFIC NORTHWEST

photo: AirBnB

Wine Country TreeHouse & Herbal Farm—Newberg, OR

Just 40 minutes from Portland, this treehouse escape was built by the master tree builder Pete Nelson of Animal Planet's TreeHouse Masters. Get ready to enjoy stunning hillside views and access to over 300 area wineries. Eat in with the onsite kitchen available for making home-cooked meals, or head to the nearby town of Dear Haven (just 30 miles away) for a meal and to peruse local shops. Breakfast is provided, so you can take every morning as slow as you like.

And while this is an ideal destination for adults, there's plenty to keep the kids entertained. Located on a small farm with no televisions on-site to take away from the charm, there's lots of room for youngsters to explore. This site offers a truly unplugged experience for families looking to bond in nature. Note: This location is not appropriate for children 2 and under.

Sleeps: 5
Cost: $200/night
Online: airbnb.com

You can see our other top Portland Airbnb spots here 

The Klickitat Treehouse—White Salmon, WA

This 500-square foot alpine modern treehouse is fully supported by three Douglas Fir trees. It sits 20 feet above the ground at its highest point and floor-to-ceiling windows and skylights offer breathtaking views of the surrounding forest, the valley and Mount Adams. Enjoy all the Columbia River Gorge has to offer and sleep in the canopy of the forest. The treehouse sleeps six but you can rent out the adjoining tiny house to sleep an additional two people. 

Sleeps: 6
Cost: $367/night
Online: airbnb.com

See our other top picks for best Airbnb rentals in Seattle.

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA

Airbnb

Silicon Valley Treehouse—San Jose, CA

This treehouse in San Jose has the most gorgeous view of the Bay Area from the lofted beds. You'll have sycamore trees poking through your living space that includes a kitchenette with cooking stove and mini fridge. The treehouse has its own bathroom. Make sure you arrive in time to catch the gorgeous sunset over the valley. Head to our San Jose guide for things to do in the area with your family. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $350/night
Online: airbnb.com

See the rest of our top picks for Bay Area family-friendly Airbnb stays here

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Aptos Treehouse with Ocean View—Aptos, CA

Can't you just feel the chill vibe from this Aptos treehouse rental? Close to New Brighton State Beach, this rental offers nearby hiking trails and beach days galore. Mid-Century furniture fills the rooms where you can curl up for a good read after a day outdoors. Heated floors, Smart TV and a gorgeous kitchen will make your visit that much more comfortable. Read our Santa Cruz guide for ideas on what to do in the area. 

Sleeps: 6
Cost: $716/night
Online: airbnb.com

Find more Northern California treehouse rentals here

Redwood Treehouse in the Santa Cruz Mountains

Give your family the experience of a lifetime once you climb into the boughs of this unique destination. Located in Watsonville just south of Santa Cruz, the redwoods surround the treehouse Airbnb, which is fully equipped with a kitchen, bed and bath and only 25 minutes from the ocean. Visitors can enjoy a scenic walk along a dirt path before reaching the treehouse. This spot is best for families with older kids. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $155/night
Online:
airbnb.com

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

Idyllwild Treehouse—Idyllwild, CA

Escape into nature in Idyllwild at this large 12-sided cabin that has a giant tree holding up its center! This stunning rental is situated in a quiet neighborhood that's just minutes away from the heart of town. There's an expansive back and front porch, perfect for reading, outdoor dining or doing yoga as well as a pond filled with fish and a large outdoor hot tub. There's also an entertainment system featuring all your favorite streaming services, and you can broadcast music from your phone throughout the house speakers. The natural decor throughout the home makes you feel like you're truly sleeping in the trees.

Good to know: Infant/Toddler beds, furnishings and protections are available upon request.

Sleeps: 8 guests
Cost: $351/night
Online: airbnb.com

Find more Southern California treehouse rentals here. 

Fillmore Treehouse with Farm Stay

Drive about an hour north of LA and you'll discover this secluded treehouse in an orchard of orange and avocado trees. It's located on a working farm, complete with chickens, goats, ducks and more—which makes it an ideal spot for a parent-kid getaway (only two guests are allowed). The recently built treehouse boasts a comfy queen bed, cute kitchenette and a full-size shower. Watch the sunset from the large deck, complete with a fire pit to satisfy your s'mores fix. After dark, you and your little one can enjoy some stargazing far from the city lights. 

Sleeps: 2 guests
Cost:
$214/night
Online:
 airbnb.com

San Diego Golden Hill Treehouse—San Diego, CA

This haven is touted as an "urban oasis" since it's located in the bustling Golden Hill neighborhood of San Diego. The "cozy eclectic Southern California version of a tree house is elevated between two mature 30 foot trees." Enjoy the soaker tub and unwind in the reading nook before strolling to some great nearby restaurants. The elevated vantage point from the bedroom offers 180° views that include downtown, the Coronado Strand and even parts of Mexico on a clear day. Cap off the day with a good selection of board games or by watching the smart TV.

Good to know: The host advises, the bathroom is on the floor below the bedroom, so night-time urges can be an inconvenient trip.

Sleeps: 4 guests
Cost: $132/night
Online: airbnb.com

Check out all of our favorite Socal rentals and retreats here.

Treehouse Adventure near Disneyland—Brea, CA

Looking for a magical spot to stay near Disneyland (when it reopens, of course)? This treehouse is just 11 miles from the theme park, in the historic neighborhood of of Brea. Tucked in a residential backyard, it's completely private and has almost all the comforts of home—think Direct TV, Wi-fi , AC and more. Don't want to take the ladder down? No problem. There's a slide that kids are sure to love. 

Good to know: The full-size private bathroom is located next to the treehouse.

Sleeps: 3 guests
Cost: $154/night
Online: airbnb.com

Here's where you'll find the rest of our favorite Los Angeles Airbnb rentals for families.

Lifeguard Tower Treehouse

Although not a treehouse exactly, this authentic lifeguard tower has been converted into a treehouse-style room that's sure to delight kiddos. Beneath the tower is a play fort, swings, relaxation pod and slides. But that's not all: There's also a trampoline that can be used with parents' supervision. While kids may not want to leave, you are just 10 minutes from the ocean and downtown Pismo Beach.  

Good to know: When you rent the Lifeguard Tower, you also get the Boathouse, a studio with a queen bed, full kitchen, full bath, and sleeper sofa.

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $200/night
Online: airbnb.com

SOUTHWEST

The Treehouse On Lake Travis—Lakeway, TX

Enjoy this peaceful beautiful lake view on the south shore of Lake Travis. The "Treehouse of Lake Travis" is newly renovated and offers a beautiful kitchen and a cozy fireplace. There is a swimming pool, hot tub, BBQ area and the Marina is steps away. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $259/night
Online: airbnb.com

Airbnb

Treehouse on a Farm | Celeste, TX

This property doubles down as it's both a treehouse and a farmstay. Sleep in the trees and walk through a fairy forest in the midst of the lavender fields. During your stay, have a picnic or wander the gardens and visit Simon the donkey and Henry the goat. Bring your gear and fish in our well-stocked pond. 

Sleeps: 7
Cost: $260/night
Online: airbnb.com

ROCKY MOUNTAINS

Treetop Houses at East Zion Resort—Orderville, UT

If you want to sleep in the trees with the comfort of a resort, this is the spot for you. These brand-new treetop houses have stunning views in all directions and breathtaking sunsets every night. Each treetop house is designed with its own private bathroom, kitchenette, fire pit, gas grill and air conditioning. Cool off at the on-site pool. There are other treetop homes on the resort property are available to rent if you have a big group. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $299/night
Online: airbnb.com

Rocky Mountain Treehouse—Carbondale, CO

How cozy would it be to spend the night in this treehouse high above Cattle Creek? Climb up the staircase and you'll find a full kitchen and wood-burning stove. Bring your coffee and hot cocoa out to one of the decks and watch the stars. You can even bring your pets! 

Sleeps: 6
Cost: $427/night
Online: airbnb.com

Raven's Nest Treehouse—Columbia Falls, MT

The Raven's Nest treehouse is a modern A-frame treehouse nestled on 5 private acres. This artistically designed two-story treehouse has all the luxury amenities you'll need for your next family vacation. There's no shortage of activities as it is within 30 minutes of Glacier National Park and minutes from Whitefish Mountain Ski Resort. The grand entrance to the Raven's Nest is an iron staircase leading you up into the trees. There are two outdoor deck areas, a full bathroom on the main floor and the second floor bathroom with a large soaking tub. Kids will especially love how two living trees grow through the treehouse interior of the Raven's Nest. There's a second treehouse on the property if you want to make it a multi-family visit. 

Sleeps: 6
Cost: $499/night
Online: airbnb.com

MIDWEST

Chicago Treehouse—Schaumburg, IL

Glamp the night away in this cedar treehouse which is outfitted with a fireplace, air conditioning, private deck, kitchenette (with sink, microwave, fridge and coffeemaker), Wi-Fi and hi-def cable TV with premium channels. The treehouse comes with a full-size bed and a twin sleeping loft with feather bed comforters. Bathroom accommodations (somewhat less glamorous, but remember, you’re glamping) include a private RV-type toilet and covered outdoor shower with lots of hot water.

Down below (you can climb down the ladder or take the fireman’s pole shortcut), you’ll find the hot tub situated nearby a waterfall and koi pond. Dine al fresco in the beautiful garden cooking on the gas grill and enjoy your meal on the fire table.

Sleeps:
Cost: $235/night
Online: airbnb.com

See the rest of our top Airbnb picks for Chicago here

Boulder Ridge Treehouse—Bayfield, WI

Nestled in the heart of berry country surrounded by pine trees, Boulder Ridge Treehouse is a handcrafted retreat where you can savor a northwoods experience with the emphasis on "woods." Lake Superior driftwood has been fashioned into beautiful railing enclosing an upstairs double loft with a catwalk joining two sleeping areas. Kids will love meeting the resident border collie, Janie. 

Sleep: 4
Cost: $299/night
Online: airbnb.com

Treehouse Village - The Box | Dundee, OH

The Box is a shipping container with a modern design that is set amidst the trees. At the end of the living area, you'll find yourself surrounded by huge windows looking high into the treetops! 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $182/night
Online: airbnb.com

SOUTH

Greenbrier Beechhouse

Greenbrier Beechhouse | Greenbrier, TN

Escape the city life and head to this luxury treehouse getaway just 30 minutes north of Music City! Nestled on 11 private acres, the stunning Greenbrier Beechhouse provides the perfect weekend oasis. A dreamy swing bridge and spacious deck connect the 1 bedroom main treehouse to the cozy 1B/1BA guest pod with a private deck & outdoor shower. Cozy up around the gas fireplace inside the main house on cool evenings or roast marshmallows or enjoy a drink outside at the gas fire pit in the middle of the shared deck dining table.

Sleeps: 6
Cost: $220/night and up
Online: greenbrierbeechhouse.com

The Magnolia in Treehouse Grove at Norton Creek—Gatlinburg, TN

Here in nature’s canopy, you will enjoy a luxurious stay in a one-of-a-kind location. Large windows are carefully placed to take full advantage of the forest landscape, while an energy efficient climate control system ensures the heat or chill in the air never disturbs you. Step out onto a covered viewing deck that soars above the ground as a smell the scent of pine on a gust of wind. Many other homes are available at Treehouse Grove if you wish to make it a group vacation. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $331/night
Online: airbnb.com

87Getaway

Treehouse Escape | Mountain View, AR

Atop the trees of the Ozark Forest sits this treehouse that's the perfect spot for families to enjoy a weekend away. A deck surrounds the entire top level so you can really be one with the trees. There's a grill and fire pit outside for you to enjoy in the evenings. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $175/night
Online: airbnb.com

Eagles Nest Treehouse | Stanton, KY

The kids will love the fairytale vibe when they stay in their very own treehouse for the night. Recline in a rocking chair and watch the sun set over the trees or try your hand at some stargazing on the deck overlooking the forest while listening to the nightly sounds of the forest.

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $149/night
Online: airbnb.com

NORTHEAST

The Canopy Treehouse—Sanford, ME

Enjoy your tiny home in the trees! Although only 350 square feet, this home has everything you need for a delightful stay. Cook dinner in a full kitchen with a refrigerator, stove, oven, microwave and coffeemaker. Both the loft and the attached sleeping pod are furnished with queen beds. Enjoy your deck with a grill and a view of the trout pond, and your private hottub. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $395/night
Online: airbnb.com

Luxurious Treehouse Near Bar Harbor—Hancock, ME

Rekindle the joy of being a kid as you revel in luxury suitable for grownups. This treehouse is nestled among maple, spruce, cedar, pine and birch. Spacious at 900 square feet, this treehouse offers such comforts as a whirlpool, sauna, kitchen, fireplace, seasonal outdoor shower and plenty of deck space. Pets are welcome. 

Sleeps: 8
Cost: $492/night
Online: airbnb.com

Treehouse Farm Stay—Rehoboth, MA

Your family will enjoy this rustic off-the-grid accommodation in the trees overlooking farm fields to the south and the forest to the north. Fresh breezes blow through the open windows in the warm weather and the wood stove keeps the space cozy and warm in the cooler seasons. The treehouse is located on a working sustainable farm: vegetables, dairy goats, livestock guardian dogs, cats, heritage hogs, poultry, horses, sheep and a water buffalo are on the property. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $175/night
Online: airbnb.com

Treehouse at Bliss Ridge Farm—Moretown, VT

You won't soon forget this Dr. Seuss-inspired, luxury treehouse perched at the top of an 88-acre, organic hill farm, further surrounded by 1000s of acres of wilderness. Designed by DIY network host of The Treehouse Guys, this is an authentic treehouse built within and around living trees. Enjoy private hiking from your door, as well as panoramic views of Vermont's Worcester Mountain range, including Camel’s Hump and Mt. Mansfield. You are truly secluded, yet only a 15-min drive from the heart of the Mad River Valley and Waterbury.

Sleeps: 7
Cost: $370/night
Online: airbnb.com

Tree House at the Shire | Conway, NH

This quaint, rustic, little cabin in the trees was designed for a true family get away. If the desire is to unplug and get back to basics, this retreat is for you. Rural yet 15-20 minute drive to North Conway, you can take advantage of the outdoor living, whatever your passion.

Sleeps: 3
Cost: $113/night
Online: airbnb.com

SOUTHEAST

Airbnb

Secluded Intown Treehouse—Atlanta, GA

This property is Airbnb's #1 most wish-listed property in the world and is described as being the most relaxing, romantic, dreamy and unique place you'll ever stay. So this one is probably more of a date night getaway or maybe a special occasion overnight with an older kiddo. What could be better than falling asleep in the trees and waking up to birds singing around you—all within the city limits? Located near Northside Drive in Buckhead, visitors here will have easy access to the interstate, Buckhead and Midtown. 

Sleeps: 2
Cost:$389/night
Online: airbnb.com

See our other top picks for family-friendly Airbnb stays in Atlanta.

White Oak Treehouse—Asheville, NC

Take in the rustic, fairy tale vibe of this custom-made treehouse in the midst of towering white oaks. Recline in a rocking chair and watch the sunset over the mountains, or try your hand at some stargazing from the comfort of the deluxe double bed. There's an addition treehouse on the property if you want to make it a multi-family stay.

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $307/night
Online: airbnb.com

Treehouse with Slide, Zipline and Fireman's Pole—Murphy, NC

This treehouse is all about adventure from the minute you arrive. It's more rustic than most as you have to bring your own sleeping bags and camping cookstove to cook up dinner. Better suited for older kids, they will absolutely love all the ways to get down from the treehouse: two slides, zipline and firehouse pole. There are also swings and slacklines to play on. Truly a unique spot! 

Sleeps: 5
Cost: $75/night
Online: airbnb.com

Eagle's Nest Treehouse—Shenandoah, VA

Thrill your inner child staying in a treehouse, but with all the luxury you expect as an adult! This rustic luxury treehouse is nestled away 17 feet high in the treetops. Kids will especially love the 4-person hot tub and the lower patio area with swinging play forts. 

Sleeps: 4
Cost: $299/night
Online: airbnb.com

 

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There is still plenty of time to enjoy the water while the weather is still warm! These swimming pool games don’t require props and promise hours of poolside perfection for mom and dad. From creative to crazy, these swimming pool games mean one thing: you’ll be traveling light all summer long. From Marco Polo to sharks and minnows, keep reading to see our favorite swimming pool games below.

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Wishing Well

Similar to Treasure Dive, Wishing Well sends players on a search for coins at the bottom of the pool. This version, however, involves lining participants up shoulder-to-shoulder with their backs to the pool while someone throws a handful of loose coins into the water. The players then dive into the pool to collect them before they land on the bottom. Let the players keep their coins as a prize or collect them all and toss them again.

Popsicle

If you’ve ever played freeze tag on dry land, this is exactly that, only in the shallow end of the pool. Start with one person as “it,” and have him or her tag the other players, who are swimming. When tagged, a player must stand frozen like a popsicle until another un-tagged player can thaw him out by swimming underwater between his legs. Just be sure to change the “it” person every so often to keep from having pouty popsicles in the pool.

Treasure Dive

Who needs fancy dive sticks or expensive torpedoes when you’ve got a public pool and a kid with goggles? Just in case you’re a little afraid of what Junior might find, however, take a handful of coins and toss them in the water to focus his search.

Funny Hair Competition

You know you’ve done it. If you ever had hair longer than shoulder-length, you’ve done the George Washington (emerged from underwater with your hair flipped down over your face, then rolled it back over your head to for a stylin’ Colonial-era ‘do). Other classics include the dinosaur (spiked hair), Princess Lea (dueling buns), and the sweet roll (spiraled over the entire head).

Air Ninja

Adrenaline, meet categories. Starting on the side of the pool in a jump-ready position, count “1,2,3” then your choice of any animate or inanimate object. Kiddos will leap into the air, strike their pose, and come up for air giggling. Some sure-fire objects that they’ll love to imitate are tigers, turtles, and trees, but the more creative you get, the more they’ll beg for more.

Marco Polo

Forget Marco Polo who was the first European to reach China. In America, if it’s June, July or August, Marco (Polo!) is the king of the pool. “Marco” catches other players based on their reply to his call, and there’s no adrenaline-like daring to be the fish out of the water! Just like tag, only in water and with your eyes closed, how many hours did you spend playing this easy but exciting pool game as a kid?

Slingshot

Who doesn't have a great memory of being catapulted from the water by mom or dad? Turn this classic parent-child bonding (or sibling) sesh into a friendly competition to see who can go the furthest, the highest, or do the coolest trick in the air.

Splash Dance

Choreograph your own water ballet to go with one of your favorite songs. Perfect for a solo endeavor or with friends (think synchronized swimming), this pool game is video recorder-ready!

Atomic Whirlpool

Part pool game, part magic trick, this game involves a line of kids inside the pool but along the edge (in the shallow end). Have them walk, then jog, then race as fast as they can—still in single file—around the perimeter of the pool, then yell “switch!” When they turn to run in the opposite direction, the current will keep them from running, but certainly, increase the laughter factor. Bonus? Running in the pool will wear. them. out.

Chicken Fight 

We give the namesake of this game two thumbs down, but the pool game is a solid 10 in our book. Be sure to set the bar high when you define the rules of engagement before shouldering up. Chicken fights are played with a minimum of four participants (two “bases” and two “chickens” who each climbs onto the other player’s shoulders). A chicken can push, pull, tickle, tackle and splash the other chicken off of its base to dominate as World Chicken Champion (until the next round, anyway).

Pool Pizza

This variation on colors involves one person—the “it” one—being named the chef. Other players pick their favorite pizza topping and group together. When the chef calls out their topping, those players swim to the other side of the pool. If the chef catches you, however, you go straight into the pizza “oven” (the out area, usually on the stairs or along one wall).

Mermaid Splash

Little mermaids take turns swimming like a mermaid with their ankles together, then go underwater and rocket out of the water with their arms in the air (a la Ariel in the Little Mermaid) to see who can jump the highest out of the water.

F.I.S.H.

Similar to P.I.G. in basketball, the first player in F.I.S.H. is the leader, and the other players must follow exactly what the leader does. Jump from the side, do a certain dive, perform a choreographed pool number—whatever the task, the players must follow it or be given a letter from F.I.S.H. The first player to spell F.I.S.H loses the game.

Belly Flop Competition

Similar to a cannonball competition but without the showmanship mid-flight, the belly flop competition is all about the biggest smack of flesh on water. Who needs a cool flip mid-air when everyone knows you’re going for surface-area-to-contact records?

Categories

With this game, the more swimmers you have, the merrier (but we know of confirmed rounds of Categories involving only two players, so work with what you’ve got). Begin by choosing someone to be "It." Who then selects a category other players are familiar with (think colors for the small set, or candy bars for the older kids). "It" stands outside of the pool with their back turned from the water and all other players line up directly underneath them with their hands on the wall, waiting for their selection to be guessed. If it is, the player tries to swim to the other side of the pool without being tagged out.

Cannonball 

Best performed from a springy, 1980’s-era diving board, cannonball competitions are similar to dance offs because each participant tries to “up” the next with their artistic interpretations mid-flight and ultimately, by the size of her splash.

 

Submarine Races

Racers become human submarines as they race underwater to see who can get the farthest without emerging for air. The key to a successful submariner is a strong start, followed by efficient flutter kicks. Some have been known to dive deep early so as not to lose momentum on the surface mid-pool.

Underwater Tea Party

Goggles come in handy here. In an underwater tea party, two players must sink to the bottom of the pool where they sit criss-cross-applesauce and then partake in a fancy tea fit for a queen. Pouring from imaginary teapots, stirring imaginary cups of tea, offering each other lumps of sugar and passing trays of finger foods and sweets are all par for the course.

Sharks & Minnows

While there's debate as to the proper starting position of the minnows (in the water or out of the water on the far side of the pool), and variation exists on the proper call to action by the shark (“Sharks and minnows, one, two, three. Fishies, fishes, come to me!” versus “Fiiiishies! Come out and plaaay!”), there’s no debate this classic swimming pool game will be entertaining our children’s children for summers to come. Could there be anything more thrilling than narrowly escaping the touch of the treacherous shark?

Octopus

The goal is to be the last swimmer unattached to the human chain of “outed” participants. The octopus begins with one player who tags another player, who then must link arms with one another (hence the growing octopus). As the octopus grows and the number of unlinked players diminishes, it gets trickier and trickier to evade the “tentacle” of players in the pool.

 

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5 Beaches within 5 Hours of Atlanta

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Needing some vitamin sea? With just under a tank of gas, most Atlantans can reach the beach in just under 5 hours. Keep reading for our favorite places to strike out for some sun and fun if you have a couple of days to spare.

Tybee Island: 4 hours 11 minutes

Just a stone's throw from Historic Savannah—18 miles, to be exact—Tybee Island has its own unique vibe that just happens to set the stage for a perfect family beach vacation. This Georgia barrier island has beautiful beaches and tons of places to explore. 

Things to Do: When you're ready to dust off the sand (kind of), the best thing to do on Tybee is get out and explore the waterways. A sea kayak trip will have you paddling past oyster beds and exploring the undeveloped Little Tybee Island, where you'll see wildlife in it's truly natural form. Visit Tybee Island Light Station to climb the oldest and tallest lighthouse in the state for fantastic views of the Savannah River—and sometimes, Hilton Head. And don't leave without a visit to the Marine Science Center for year-round programs on the beach, in the marsh, on the water, in the classroom, and at their Coastal Georgia Gallery.

Find Out More: Pay a visit to the official Tybee Island website for accommodation deals and additional information. 

S. Massey

Hilton Head Island: 4 hours 17 minutes

Warm sunshine. Balmy breezes. Wide, sandy beaches. Meandering bike trails underneath a canopy of live oaks and Spanish moss. Al-fresco dining. Effortless adventures for the entire family. Happiness. That's Hilton Head. 

Things to Do: With over 12 miles of sparking sand beaches—public beach access and parking is abundant if your hotel or rental isn’t beach adjacent—the first thing you're going to want to do is slather on some sunscreen and play in the surf. Coligny Beach Park (12 S. Forest Beach Dr.) has earned a reputation for being one of the most fam-friendly beaches due to their fabulous fountain (perfect for cooling off), clean bathrooms and swings in the shade. Hard-packed beaches and paved public pathways, means that Hilton Head Island is heaven on earth for bike enthusiasts. Rent a bike for a day or a week and have it delivered (and picked up) at your location. Be sure to ride your bike on the beach at low tide for an unforgettable experience.

Find Out More: Check out our insider's guide to Hilton Head, and be sure to visit the official Hilton Head Island website for accommodation deals. 

St. Simon's Island: 4 hours 47 minutes

Recently voted the number one favorite beach town by Travel and Leisure, St. Simon's Island is laid back fun with a small town vibe. Similar to Hilton Head, the hard-packed sandy beaches are perfect for strolling, biking, and building sandcastles in. And with a dedicated business district, you've got lots of options for dining and entertainment, too. 

Things to Do: In addition to the beach and biking that should be at the top of your list, a visit to Fort Frederica National Monument—a Georgia State Park historical site that was once a thriving community in colonial Georgia—offers a nice history lesson and break from the beach. Or perhaps get on the water with the Lady Jane Shrimp Boat to trawl through the marshes to discover the spoils of the sea: pufferfish, huge sting rays, and even a few shrimp have been known to find their ways on board. 

Find Out More: Take a peek at the Official Golden Isles visitor guide for the scoop and deals on lodging.

S. Massey

Jekyll Island: 4 hours 57 minutes

Beach vacations with babes in tow score bonus points when they offer up a little something more than sand. And with miles of wide, flat beaches, bike trails through Spanish-moss covered live oaks, and wildlife interactions at world-class facilities, Jekyll Island is a family vacation jackpot only four-and-a-half hours from Atlanta.

Things to Do: While any of the beaches on Jekyll Island are sure to please, don't pass up a chance to take the littles to Driftwood Beach. Located on the north end of the island, it's dotted with sun-bleached, beached, and gorgeous remains of live oaks that are as beautiful as they are entertaining to climb on. Jekyll is also home to Georgia’s only rehabilitation center for endangered sea turtles. The Georgia Sea Turtle Center offers eco-experiences led by biologists and researchers about sea turtle nesting and monitoring, and the American alligator.

Find Out More: Check out our insider's guide to Jekyll Island, and be sure to visit the official Jekyll Island website for accommodation deals. 

Panama City Beach: 4 hours 59 minutes

Historically know for being the spring break destination for colleges across the southeast, this panhandle community will surprise you with its abundance of family friendly attractions and will wow you with its beautiful turquoise water. 

Things to Do: After you get your fill of the sugar-white sands and gentle gulf waves, take the crew to Beachfront Adventures for off-road buggies and zip lines, ropes courses, go karts, mini golf, an aqua maze and more. To keep the adrenaline going, you might opt for a helicopter tour of the coast, or perhaps an airboat ecotour.

Find Out More: Pay a visit to the official Panama City Beach website for accommodation deals and additional information. 

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We all know it goes: that shiny and new backpack becomes a little worse for wear after a few months of riding on the bus, being dragged along the halls and getting chucked on the playground. Too early to get a new backpack, too late to undo the mystery stains. But guess what? You can totally clean your kid’s backpack. And prevent it from getting too darn gross, too. Here’s how to clean, disinfect and refresh that backpack! 

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How to Machine Wash Your Backpack

Yes, most likely you can wash it in the washing machine (unless it’s leather or has leather or suede trim/bottom, in which case you'll want to use a hand-washing method). Use a gentle cycle and and use your regular laundry detergent, but don't use very much detergent. Here's the real trick, though: place the backpack inside a pillowcase or washable laundry bag. Make sure the pillowcase is tied at the top. Be sure and spot clean (see below) any tough mystery stains before machine-washing.

Let it air dry. Be sure and open all pockets and compartments to let it dry out thoroughly.

Don’t put it in the dryer. Strange things will happen.

Tip: Make sure you empty the backpack of all notes, chewed up pens, half-eaten apples, fidget spinners, tiny erasers shaped like food or any other items.

How to Hand-Wash Your Backpack

Fill a tub or sink with lukewarm water and use a mild soap or detergent directly in the water. Before you submerge your backpack, make sure you’ve cleaned it out entirely and spot treated any tough spots.

If you have a Jansport backpack with a suede bottom or leather bottom use this method minus the detergent. 

Submerge the bag in the water and “agitate” slightly to get it clean. Use an old toothbrush to scrub the zippers, mesh areas and embroidered threads.

Once you’ve washed it, drain the soapy water and refill with clean water to rinse.

Soak in clean water and then squeeze out as much water as you can. 

Air dry. 

Tip: Keep the backpack tidier by tossing in snacks that won’t spill out of their packaging and rub into the bottom or inner lining. It also helps to provide snacks you know they will actually devour like these Jif® Power Ups our editors (and their kids) love. 

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How to Spot Clean & Disinfect

Use a tiny bit of detergent in water and spot clean with a clean sponge.

Use an old toothbrush to scrub the zippers, mesh areas and embroidered threads.

For really tough spots, try a spot-cleaning stick or stain remover.

Don’t let the mixture of detergent or stain remover dry out before rinsing it off with clean water or washing the bag using one of the methods above.

Tip: If your kiddo’s pack has been exposed to something like Athlete’s foot or another fungus, or you can just tell it is extra funktastic (your PE shorts have been in there how long??) use a spot cleaning method as above but sub in a disinfectant like Pine-Sol (never use bleach).

 

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The 12 Best U-Pick Berry Farms Near Atlanta

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The time is ripe to hit the farm in Georgia for juicy strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and peaches (not to mention other perks, like pony rides, tractor rides, corn pits, maybe a CSA box program, and inflatables at some spots). While different crops ripen at different times, we’ve picked our favorite farms to take the small set for a day of fresh air, berry-stained fingers, and happy hearts. Read on for more about our favorite fields for strawberry (and other berries!) picking fun.

Wild Fern Ranch

Wild Fern Ranch offers around 1000 Certified All Natural (CNG) blueberry bushes of 3 different varieties that yield roughly 500 pound of delish blueberries per week. Open and in season from early June through mid July (check social media pages for details), you can visit from Mon.-Sat. for u-pick from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Don't miss community days weekly for discounted picking and Friday night events for live music.

12000 Hutchesons Ferry Rd.
Palmetto, GA 30268
404-545-4171

Warbington Farms

Offering a “Farm Fun Park” that includes a petting zoo, corn crib, inflatable slides, bounce house and playground set, this u-pick has the market cornered on farm fun in Forsyth County. Other perks include live bluegrass music and "hey" rides (pricing for Family Fun Park is $9 per child and $5 for ages 12 years and older, plus tax). Strawberry picking hours will be determined by availability and weather, so check here for current conditions before you go.

5555 Crow Rd.
Cumming, Ga
770-380-2920
Online: warbingtonfarms.com

Adams Farm

Blueberries are the newest addition to the u-pick options at Adams Farm in Fayetteville, and since the fields are netted, you don't have to compete with the birds for the berries. Containers are provided, there's a market with fruits and vegetables, and you can visit Mon.-Sat. from 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

1486 Georgia Highway 54 West
Fayetteville, Ga
770-461-9395
Online: adamsfarmfayettevillega.com

Washington Farms

At this Watkinsville farm, spring strawberry season begins in mid-April and comes not only with buckets for berry picking, but also four super Saturdays where activities include wagon rides, a petting zoo, a cow train, a corn box, and more. Go later in the summer for blackberries, and pick your pumpkins there in the fall. Just be sure you pick before you play to make sure that the fields don't get picked out early! Open Monday-Saturdays 8 a.m.-6 p.m.; closed Sundays.

5691 Hog Mountain Rd.
Bogart, Ga 30622
770-554-8119
Online: washingtonfarms.net

DJ's U-Pick Blueberry Farm

For a closer-to-town option, DJ's—located a stone's throw from the Gwinnett Braves stadium—specializes in blueberries, but they also have Scottish Highland Cows (Coco & Rudolph) and goats on our farm. Please check DJ's Facebook page daily for hours or call ahead to make sure they are indeed open for the day. Open Monday-Sunday from 8 a.m. until picked out.

1839 Prospect Rd.
Lawrenceville, Ga
678-442-7853
Online: djsupickblueberries.com

Moon Farms Country Market

At Moon Farms Country Market, you'll find over 25,000 plants consisting of two different varieties of strawberries— Camarosa and Chandler. Pick-your-own fresh from the farm, or call ahead and place a pre-pick order. Check the website for fruit availability, and go Mon.-Sat. from 9 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sun. from 2-6 p.m.

3498 GA-72
Colbert, Ga 30628
706-338-0065
Online: moon-farms.com

 

Southern Belle Farm

Head to this 330-acre family farm in McDonough for pick-your-own berries, plus a country market, jumping pillows, a cow train, pedal cars, a hayride, a giant tube slide, and more (all on the weekends). Admission to the farm activities is $8/ person, but the berries are free to pick (you pay for what you pick after you're finished picking). Go Mon.-Fri. from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sat. from 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sundays 1-6 p.m. Do yourself a favor and pick up an order of strawberry shortcake (with or without soft serve ice cream) before you leave!

1658 Turner Church Rd.
McDonough, Ga
770-288-2582
Online: southernbellefarm.com

Mercier Orchards

This family orchard, now in its 4th generation, begins picking season with strawberries in mid to late April, then offers blueberries, blackberries, peaches, and apples through the summer and into the fall. Go for the u-picks on select dates, but stay for the bakery and deli, market store, and now a farm winery and cider house.  Open seven days a week from 7 a.m.-6 p.m., but u-picks are available only on select dates, weather permitting.

8660 Blue Ridge Dr.
Blue Ridge, Ga 30513
706-632-3411
Online: mercier-orchards.com

Mitcham Farm

This working farm in Oxford, Georgia offers seasonal u-pick patches for strawberries and blueberries in the spring, blackberries in the summer, and pumpkins in the fall. Hours depend on availability of the crop and the weather, so be sure to check this out before you load the car. In addition to the fields, Mitcham Farm also has homemade strawberry ice cream, strawberry jam, local honey, frog jam, preserves, salsas, fresh produce (depending on availability) and other specialty items for sale at their Farm Stand, in addition to two family swings, a farm animal viewing area, and a picnic area onsite. Go Mon.-Sat. from 9 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sun. from 1-5 p.m., weather permitting. Check their Facebook page for live updates on picking conditions.

797 Macedonia Church Rd.
Oxford, Ga 30054
770-855-1530
Online: mitchamfarm.com

Fleeman's Blueberries

Fleeman’s offers clean potties, a picnic table under the shade of an old oak and eight varieties of Rabbit-Eye, pesticide-free blueberries perfect for little pickers. Prices and hours will vary depending on weather and crop availability, but the picking season typically runs from late June through August. Call ahead to check out the farmer's forecast for the day.

716 Harrison Mill Rd.
Winder, Ga
770-867-3420
Online: fleemansblueberries.com

Jaemor Farms

While they only open their farm for strawberry picking one day a year—this year on May 5—the folks at Jaemor Farm know how to throw a party. In addition to picking, the kiddos will go bananas over the hayrides, petting zoo, farm slide, skeeball and duck races, while you can taste a couple of new recipes at the strawberry cook-off and check out the local vendors at the festival portion of the farm. Don't miss the homemade strawberry milkshakes and fresh milk samples from Mountain Fresh Creamery's mobile dairy unit. Check website for updates on u-pick events for 2021.

5340 Cornelia Hwy.
Alto, Ga 30510
770-869-3999
Online: jaemorfarms.com

Remember to always call ahead since farm hours and crop availability are constantly in flux. Also note that many farms are cash only so hit the bank before hitting the road! Don’t forget sunscreen, hats, bug spray, and water.

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It’s summer! With these local fishing spots, your kids will fall hook, line, and sinker for this easygoing past time that doesn’t break the bank or require tons of planning. For the price of a fishing license (available online) and the time it takes to get there, you’re guaranteed to catch a whopper of a memory or two. Keep reading to find out where to go and don’t forget your fishing pole and tackle box. Not sure you’re ready to cast a line? Check out our guide to Atlanta-area recreational lakes—perfect for dipping your toes— here.

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The Dugout

The Dugout is a bait and tackle shop with a pay-to-fish lake, and it has a devoted following of beginner and advanced fishermen for its product selection, customer service, and friendly employees. No matter how great or small your fishing needs are, this fishing hole comes full-service and is a solid bet.

The Dugout
1475 Field Park Cir NW.
Marietta, Ga
770-428-7406
Online: facebook.com/dukedog1475

Big Creek Park

Lake Lanier has 45 waterfront parks, and some are only 45 minutes from the heart of Atlanta. We like Big Creek Park for its shady picnic area, public restroom, green space, and proximity to the water that doesn't require a hike down to water level.

Big Creek Park
4000 Big Creek Rd.
Buford, Ga
Online: lakelanier.com

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Acworth Beach/ Cauble Park

Acworth Beach is a busy place in the summer. The beach and other facilities—including restrooms, a playground, and picnic facilities—in Cauble Park attract plenty of visitors, and the nearby fishing dock in the park provides access to the lake's channel catfish, largemouth bass, bluegill, redear sunfish, crappie, carp and bullheads.

4425 Beach St NW
Acworth, GA 30101
770-917-1234
Online: allatoonalake.org

Bull Sluice Lake

While we’ve all been there for the incredible playground, try packing the fishing poles the next time you go and hitting the fishing platform just below dam. Be sure to take your hats since this area is in direct sunlight, but the cool old hydroelectric dam will wow the kiddos if the fishing doesn’t.

Morgan Falls Overlook Park
200 Morgan Falls Rd.
Sandy Springs, Ga
770-730-5600
Online: sandysprings.gov

Murphy Candler Park

This man-made lake is stocked with bass, bluegill, sunfish, and catfish, and has plenty of good, shady shoreline fishing options for novice fishermen with short attention spans. With trails, athletic fields, tennis courts, a public pool, and tennis courts nearby, your fishermen won’t have to leave with a fish to leave happy.

Murphy Candler Park
1551 West Nancy Creek Dr.
Brookhaven, Ga
Online: murphycandlerpark.org

Azalea Park

Head to Azalea Park in Roswell for its easy shore fishing from the Chattahoochee River, covered picnic areas, and nearby playground, just in case the fish aren’t biting. However, since the Department of Natural Resources stocks the stretch of the ‘Hooch between Buford Dam and Azalea Drive with 150,000 catchable trout each year, you’ve got as good a shot as anyone to land a big one.

Azalea Park
203 Azalea Dr.
Roswell, Ga
Online: roswellgov.com

 

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You don’t need a docent to guide you through the Atlanta street art scene, which now boasts over 1000 murals (though you could learn a lot on one of these walking tours). Just hop on a bike, a skateboard, or lace up your sneaks to check out artwork that is as inspiring as it is Insta-worthy. And, to celebrate Atlanta’s growing muralist community, the ATL1000 awareness campaign has big things planned, including a mural painting workshop for kids! Keep reading for our favorite murals around town, below.

This Lela Brunet masterpiece stretches out across several walls of a Buckhead parking deck. If you're looking for a vibrant background with "Atlanta" clearly repeated throughout, this is your spot. One thing to note, however, is that each wall is only about 3-feet high. If you're hoping for a massive backdrop, look elsewhere, but this would be a great backdrop for a younger child or crawler to pose in front of. 

Find It: 3259 Roswell Rd. NE

 

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Tiny Doors ATL is an Atlanta-based art project that installs 7-inch door sculptures by artist Karen Anderson Singer in neighborhoods or at institutions. Door #658 (it's 658 times the size of a traditional tiny door) is located on the Eastside Beltline Trail, and is so big that it will make YOU feel tiny!

Find it: At the Edge OTB (behind the giant bull), 670 DeKalb Ave. SE

 

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Known around town as the #heybrowngirlmural, it's painted on the side of Peters Street Station and is a product of the work done by @nikiaphoenix and @blackgirlbeautifuldotcom, with art by @thepainterbae. It was created to remind us all that brown women all over the world are beautiful, and that representation is important.

Find It: At the corner of Trenholm St. SW and Peters St. SW 

 

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Photo by @sovereignrm

This 70-foot mural of the late Rep. John Lewis is located on the east side of the current Renaissance Walk building. Lewis was a politician and civil rights leader who served as the U.S. Representative for Georgia's 5th congressional district. Located in an area of downtown with much historical significance, you'll be walking in Lewis' footsteps if you go to pay this mural a visit. The Butler Street YMCA building, where civil rights leaders met in the 1960s, is directly south of this mural, and dozens of historical churches and businesses surround it in the Sweet Auburn Historic District

FInd It: 219 Auburn Ave. NE

 

 

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Moms, grab your coffee and head on over to this mural in Castleberry Hill—an historic neighborhood known for its industrial-to-arts vibe—to snap a picture of yourself in your natural environment: wings up. While you're at it, put the Castleberry Hill Art Stroll (every 2nd Friday) on your agenda. You'll visit fascinating and diverse galleries and get a taste of this little corner of Atlanta!

Find It: 217 Walker St. SW

Painted on the side of Atlanta's famous "Disco Kroger" (it used to be a swinging night club called Limelight Disco, where Andy Warhol purportedly hung out in the 80's), this depiction of the building's former glory days by Yoyo Ferro is actually quite glorious, itself. 

Find It: 3330 Piedmont Rd. NE

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Another Castleberry Hill mural, this one pretty much sums it up. And in the family, there couldn't be a better spot than this one to snap a photo of your kiddos getting along. 

Find It: In the vicinity of 261-263 Peters St. 

 

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This is one of two murals in Decatur painted by  @thekillamari for @livingwallsatl as part of the Laura Patricia Calle Grant, which accepts proposals for a public art project that informs and promotes awareness on social equality, feminism, immigrtants' rights, LGBTQ rights, and cultural diversity.  The colors chosen for this mural are inspired by the Pan-Sexual pride flag. 

Find It: Commerce & E. College Ave.

 

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​Lela Brunet is an Atlanta artisit known for depicting contrast between a female form and colorful patterns. This particular mural joins those in @outerspaceproject—a week-long event of art, murals, live music, action sports in the ATL—along the #path400 trail in Buckhead. 

Find It: Old Ivy to Wieuca Rd. spur of Path 400

 

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We love the merry marigolds of this mural that's painted on the side of a shipping container. Find it near the chicken coop area of the Berea Mennonite farm on Bouldercrest in East Atlanta. The small urban church has multiple acres under cultivation and grows over 70 different organic vegetables on the east edge of Atlanta, and sells its food at local farmers’ markets. It also provides a first fruits tithe to the community, distributed through a free clinic. 

Find It: 1088 Bouldercrest Dr. SE

 

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In Grant Park, you'll find this cheerful mural called "Vaso de Flores" by artist Yoyo Ferro @yoyoferro. Big, bright, and bold (also very near The Beacon, in case you're shopping or dining nearby), we could all use a vase of flowers this year. 

Find It: In the vicinity of 1039 Grant St. SE

Located in Buckhead, this mural by Thomas Turner is called "Moon Seeker." It's dedicated to Henry Aaron, legendary MLB right fielder and current SVP of the Atlanta Braves. He was also known as the man boxing legend Muhammad Ali called “The only man I idolize more than myself."

Find It: Just north of 3279 Roswell Rd. NE

 

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Asian American Businesses to Support in Atlanta

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Atlanta has a strong Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community, and the businesses run by AAPI-owners include toy stores, restaurants, bookstores, photography studios, florists, art installations and more. To check out the vast array of unique, eclectic and downright irresistible AAPI-owned businesses in Atlanta, keep reading.

Hello Rainbow

Located in Duluth, Georgia, Hello Rainbow Toys thoughtfully curates a collection of toys and learning resources for the children you love. Opened in November 2018, owner Trang Tran has been passionated about sourcing the best products for children that you can’t find at large retailers for years. After being a museum store buyer for over 10 years, she decided to open her own toy store.

How to Support: Shop the store, or call for a well-curated, very knowledgeable personal shopper to guide you through the process of picking the perfect present for the little in your life.

3550 W Lawrenceville St. Ste. 330
Duluth, GA 30096
470-268-4114

Maomi Bookstore

Established in 2017, this Atlanta-based bookstore houses curated wares from China and Taiwan. Tucked away among Chinese and bilingual books, you'll find imported teas and tea sets, Chinese calligraphy materials, stationery and gift items. The store is found nestled among the stores and restaurants of Chinatown, Atlanta and aims to cultivate an awareness of Chinese culture and to preserve and maintain the Chinese community in Atlanta.

How to Support: In addition to shopping the store, be on the lookout for special events, like last month's Tea Culture Workshop.

5391 New Peachtree Rd.
Chamblee, GA 30341
(770) 451-5171

Alice Park Photography

Co-founder of the National Association of Professional Child Photographers (NAPCP) and Park Studios (a natural light studio and creative space), and founder of Alice Park Photography and Creativity Camp, Alice is a passionate entrepreneur, creative and industry influencer of more than 15 years.

How to Support: Join Alice Park and her talented team of photographers for an exclusive photographic event celebrating motherhood in April, and be on the lookout for her other photography events throughout the year (or book a private session with her). Your ticket includes a 10 minute mini-session and special treats for you and your children. 

Connect with Alice here.

Pinker Times

Located at Buckhead Village, Pinker Times is a floral shop and art installation pop-up that features two floral art installations, unique bouquets and arrangements for purchase and a choose-your-own flower bar. Founded by artist Skye Lin, the ethereal floral design studio offers unique florals, including amaranthus, dahlias, peonies and more inside a 1200-square-foot space. The space features a minimalistic aesthetic with pink walls and delicately arranged flowers throughout. A new offering at the store is the “Forever Flower Bar,” a dried flower wall where guests can choose by the stem. In addition, Pinker Times houses two of Skye’s installations: a floating arrangement styled with dried stems and a second, newer exhibition featuring a field of pink grasses embodying Lin’s personal representation of “pinker times” – a happy time, place or feeling that is cherished. 

How to Support: Swing by to create your own bouquet from seasonal flowers, or reach out to Pinker Times for your special event floral needs. They do everything from weddings to baby showers, and anything in between. Or just pay the storefront a visit. Pinker Times is an art installation dedicated to anyone who could use a little beauty away from the noise.

247 Buckhead Ave. NE
Atlanta, GA

PH’EAST at The Battery Atlanta

Inspired by the hawker markets on the streets of Asia, PH’EAST is an Asian-focused food hall that brings a Far East Street Feast to The Battery Atlanta. Guests are able to sample foods from Japan, China, Laos and the Pacific Islands—prepared by best-in-category chefs and restaurateurs.PH’EAST offers beverages, meals or quick snacks – all to be savored at communal indoor seating or on the covered patio. Food stalls include 26 Thai, Poke Burri, Lifting Noodles Ramen, Fan T’Asia, Kung Fu Tea and Taps, among others. PH’EAST can seat 80 people outside on the 1,500 square foot covered patio, or 90 people inside which is designed to make you feel like you’re walking through an alleyway in Japan or China.

How to Support: Whether you're in the mood for bubble tea or beer, head to PH'EAST for food options to satisfy every craving. Add to the food some live music and outdoor dining, and you've got yourself a dream date, with or without your kiddos.

925 Battery Ave. Suite 1100
Atlanta, Ga

Chai-Yo & Tuk Tuk Thai Food Loft

Daughter of the esteemed Charlie and Nan Niyomkul of Nan Thai Fine Dining fame, Dee Dee is a powerhouse by her own right. Creating Tuk Tuk Thai Food Loft in Brookwood Hills and now Chai-Yo in Buckhead, her upscale Thai concepts have innovated right through the pandemic. Offering family style meals to go, outdoor dining with live music, and considerable contributions towards ending food insecurity, Dee Dee is at the helm of a growing and thriving component of the Atlanta restaurant scene. 

How to Support: Dine-in, order online, or attend an event

https://www.instagram.com/p/B5sfPdRJc84/?hidecaption=true

Sugarcoat

Peiru Kim graduated from Georgia Tech with a degree in business in 1996, then worked for a real estate development company for more than 15 years before purchasing her first Sugarcoat location in 2010. Since then, it's grown to six locations with two more set to open in the upcoming months. And it goes far beyond the typical nail salon, offering a beautiful environment and seats that make the guest feel like they're sitting on their own thrones. 

How to Support: Do yourself a solid and book an appointment today, and don't forget to take your mini-me! They have Miss Priss packages for guests ages 10 & under. 

Eleven TLC

Hea Won and her husband, Charles Harris opened the first ever storefront of Eleven TLC—a wellness co. offering adaptogenic teas, lattes, caffeine (TLC) and vegan soft serve ice cream—at Ponce City Market in January 2021 and is now open in Buckhead at Lenox Mall. With health and wellness top of mind, Eleven TLC uses ethically sourced, organic ingredients and consults experts in a variety of fields (mixologists, functional medicine practitioners, doctors and recipe developers) to carefully concoct recipes that provide true health benefits for the consumer. Hea Won and her husband strongly believe in using organic, clean ingredients even when it’s not the most convenient choice.

How to Support: Located in Ponce City Market and Lenox Mall, Eleven TLC is a great choice for refueling your body for the BeltLine or perhaps some retail therapy. And parents, listen up! They recommend a Super-Powered Matcha for hours of calm, clear-headed energy. Don't everyone run there at once.

675 Ponce De Leon Ave. NE
Atlanta, GA 30308

Butcher & Brew

Butcher & Brew is an American gastro sports bar with two locations. The original location is in the soul of Alpharetta’s Historic Downtown District and the second location is at Halcyon in Forsyth County. Originally opened in 2016 by restaurateur Louis Soon, the restaurant serves an eclectic and extensive collection of craft beers paired with bold and tasty twists on sandwiches, bowls and shareable fare. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner seven days a week, and the food program is led by Culinary Director Andy Long. Butcher & Brew has been featured in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Eater Atlanta and Atlanta Magazine. Butcher & Brew is part of Maven Restaurant Group, which also includes neighboring South Main Kitchen, Lapeer Seafood Market and the newly opened Mow’s Chinese Kitchen.

How to Support: Grab a table early in the evening so your kids can get plenty of greenspace time in before din-din (and you can enjoy a cold one) at the Downtown Alpharetta location. And, starting Feb. 1, kids eat free! Spend $20 and earn 1 free kids meal Mon.-Thurs. from 4-6 p.m. 

3 S. Main St.
Alpharetta, GA
678-585-3344

Lazy Betty

Lazy Betty is a modern and innovative restaurant inspired by its community and guided by exquisite ingredients and a thoughtful approach where every part contributes to the whole. Executive Chef/Partner Ron Hsu and Chef de Cuisine/Partner Aaron Phillips helm the kitchen, creating bright and well-executed tasting menus. Named a 2020 James Beard Award semifinalist for “Best New Restaurant,” Lazy Betty was awarded three-star reviews from both The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (here) and Atlanta Magazine (here), and it was also named “Best New Restaurant" by Atlanta Magazine (here) and “Restaurant of the Year” by Eater Atlanta (here)

How to Support: Save Lazy Betty for a date night, but go ahead and book a sitter, stat.

1530 Dekalb Ave. NE
Atlanta, GA
404-975-3692

L&M Market

Sunghee Kim, who runs L&M Market in Midtown with her husband, has created a neighborhood convenience store with a "bodega" vibe. Expect a good selection of household items, snacks, and groceries, plus a standout selection of beer and wine.

How to Support: Stop by L&M Market before heading to Piedmont Park this weekend (or next, or whenever). You'll be able to put together an easy picnic in no time.

785 Argonne Ave. NE
Atlanta, GA
404-876-0576

Sole Spa

If your feet need some TLC, then the only place you need to head is to Sole Spa. You'll find foot and body reflexology, massage, and acupressure in an urban oasis with organic  oils and an array of relaxing aromatherapy. In short, this place is the bomb. Go. you won't regret it.

How to Support: Just go. You'll thank us.

254 Pharr Rd, NE
Atlanta, GA
404-842-0234

 

 

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How to Celebrate Mother’s Day in Atlanta

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If we had our way, we’d declare Mother’s Day a weeklong holiday and put laundry, cooking, grocery shopping, and the general work-life juggling act on lockdown. But since we’re not in charge (and since our plan would result in total chaos), we’ve pulled together our favorite ideas for celebrating Mother’s Day in an epic way. Keep reading to find out what to do and where, below.

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For the Outdoorsy Mom

Take advantage of Atlanta's proximity to incredible hikes, bike paths, parks and playgrounds, and state parks to celebrate your mom who loves the great outdoors. If you're looking for a dramatic view (perhaps to match the drama the kiddos add to her life), check out Sawnee Mountain Indian Seats in Cumming, a roughly 4-mile trail that climbs over and around the sheer face of Sawnee Mountain, where you'll see breathtaking views of the distant Blue Ridge Mountains.

Gear Up: If you're thinking about making a weekend camping trip out of it, be sure to check out this camping gear before you go. It does basically everything except pitch the tent. 

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For the Foodie Mom

Pull together some of these awesome picnic recipes or pick up food to go from one of these local restaurants that offer family meal deals and head to one of Atlanta's best picnic spots. Be sure and bring books, a frisbee, and sunscreen, because you'll want to stay here all day long. For in-restaurant dining, head to Park Tavern, Lazy Betty, Le Bilboquet, and South City Kitchen, who are all offering a special brunch.

Park Tavern
500 10th St NE
Online: parktavern.com

Lazy Betty
1530 DeKalb Ave. NE
Online: lazybettyatl.com

Le Bilboquet
3027 Bolling Way NE
Online: lebilboquetatlanta.com

South City Kitchen
9000 Avalon Blvd.
Online: southcitykitchen.com

Gear Up: For a more sophisticated basket, check out these awesome Mother's Day baskets that include everything from pretty paper goods and gourmet spreads to flower bouquets and bubbly—offered by Lucy's Market in Buckhead.

Lucy's Market
56 E Andrews Dr. NW
Online: lucysmarket.com

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For the Fancy Mom

If you're planning a day for the mom who really appreciates a cleaned-up act with manners on display, you'll rejoice to know that the Ritz-Carlton Atlanta is offering cuisines from around the world featuring recipes from the chef's own mothers during brunch (Reservations required, limited seating available. Priced at $110 per guest, $48 per children ages 3 to 12; complimentary for children two and under; exclusive of tax and gratuity. Complimentary valet included.), you can snag afternoon tea at the Waldorf-Astoria Atlanta-Buckhead, or you can make reservations at the swanky Swan Coach House for indoor or outdoor dining.

Ritz-Carlton Atlanta
181 Peachtree St. NE
404-659-0400
Online: ritzcarlton.com

Waldorf-Astoria Atlanta Buckhead
3376 Peachtree Rd. NE
404-995-7500
Online: hilton.com

Swan Coach House
3130 Slaton Dr. NW
404-261-0636
Online: swancoachhouse.com

Gear Up: Your kids will make your mother proud if they look over these 14 table manners for kids of all ages before hitting any of these fancier spots on Mother's Day.

iStock

For the Artsy Mom

With the Atlanta's world-class museums and galleries, you can spend a day checking out the Shaheen Collection of French Art at The High, perusing the newly opened Full Circle: Design without End exhibit at MODA, or simply strolling Castleberry Hill's Art District the Friday of Mother's Day weekend to see what's happening.

The High
1280 Peachtree St. NE
Online: high.org

MODA
1315 Peachtree St. NE
Online: museumofdesign.org

Castleberry Hill Art Stroll
Start at 51 Elliott St.
Online: castleberryhill.org

Gear Up: If you'd rather stay at home, set the backyard up for a mega outdoor art session and create some memories and Mother's Day keepsakes.

iStock

For Every Mom

Whether you're treating her to lunch, an art stroll, or a day outside, every mom will feel special with a beautiful bouquet. And if there's no place your mom of honor would rather be than at the ball field, then don't deny her that pleasure. Just be sure to honor her with some flowers by Atlanta moms at the helm of Farmhouse Orchids, Meredith McClure Floral Design, or from Atlanta Flower Bar, where you can even gift her a special floral arranging class (with or without kiddos in tow). 

Atlanta Flower Bar
145 Sampson St. NE
404-431-0811
Online: atlantaflowerbar.com

Gear Up: Staying closer to home? Call some neighbors over and set up some mom olympics with these awesome back yard games that you don't have to do any prep for!

Featured image via iStock. 

—Shelley Massey

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