8 things to do before summer ends

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 24, 2006

By Adam Hammer, staff writer

Summer is almost over.

Back-to-school signs are popping up at retail stores all over town and parents are eating up the sales while their children are clinging to their last strings of summer fun.

Albert Lea has had an abundance of ongoing activities throughout the summer, but many of them will soon be closing for the season or the weather will not allow for them.

Here is a list of things to do before summer leaves the area for another year:

Go

Albert Lea Aquatic Center

You only have until Sunday to get to the pool before the Aquatic Center closes for the season.

Albert Lea’s water park features a zero depth splash pool with interactive play features for children including tumble buckets, deck sprays, a mushroom waterfall, bubblers, and a five arm water fountain.

It also features a 226-foot water slide and a newly renovated main pool that ranges in depth from 3-and-a-half feet to 13 feet and has two 1-meter diving boards.

Admission is $3, children under 2 years old get in free.

City Beach

City Beach on Fountain Lake is still open to the public, but the bouys will be coming off the lake sometime after Labor Day, according to the Albert Lea Parks and Recreation department.

Besides having a swimming area, the beach has picnic benches, rest rooms, tennis courts and a sand volleyball court.

There are no lifeguards on duty at City Beach.

Bayside Skiers Show

Scooby Doo and the gang have been back in Albert Lea since June 22, every Thursday, with the Bayside Skiers performing &8220;Scooby Doo and the Ghost Pirate’s Revenge.&8221;

They still have a few more shows on the calendar and will wrap up their performance season on Labor Day.

Shows are free and open to the public Thursdays at Edgewater Park starting with a pre-show at 6:15 p.m. and the Scooby Doo show at 7 p.m.

Pelican Breeze

The double-decker pontoon on Albert Lea Lake will be taking tour rides around the lake until the end of September.

However, with the summer season coming to an end and the boating season drawing to a close, September tours require reservations.

There are still a few special events on the Pelican Breeze this summer with a boat ride hosted by humorist Al Batt Saturday and Sept. 3.

Regular rides on the Pelican Breeze by reservation are on Fridays for the pizza cruise for $12. Regular public tours for $9 are at 2 p.m. Sundays or 7 p.m. Saturdays.

For reservations call 383-2630.

Do

Have a water fight

You don’t have to have the biggest Super Soaker on the market or throw water balloons as hard as you can. A garden hose, a bucket or even pop bottle &045; anything that will hold water &045; will work just fine.

Respect your neighbors and have fun.

Play in the park

There are 41 parks and recreation areas in Albert Lea according to the city’s Web site.

Although many of the parks will not be closing following the summer season, one of the best times of the year to sit on a swing or ride down a slide is in the summer.

Take a walk

A walk is a good activity for any season, but the summer lends itself to warm weather, sunshine and an opportunity to get outside any day it’s not raining.

Hit the Blazing Star Trail, walk around Fountain Lake or wander the 16 miles of hiking trail, 8.25 miles of self-guided trail, a half mile of handicapped accessible trail and 7 miles of mountain bike trail at Myre-Big Island State Park.

Have a picnic

Grab a basket with a few sandwiches, some fruit and whatever else travels well and head outdoors for lunch. There are fewer bugs outside this time of year than in July and the temperatures are comfortable.

Get outside, relax and enjoy the end of summer.