Looking for Family Activities This Summer?

Get Outdoors and Do Something Wild!

Media Contact:
Lesa Johnston, CDFW Communications, (916) 322-8933

11-year-old girl on riverbank holding the striped bass she caught
Kate Macintyre caught a striped bass on the Sacramento River. Kirsten Macintyre photo

School is out and parents everywhere are thinking about how to keep their kids from becoming couch potatoes this summer.  Families will also be seeking recreational activities and trying to plan a quality outing on a budget.  Those willing to venture outdoors in the Golden State will find lots of things to do – kid-friendly and pocketbook-friendly, too.  If you are looking for creative summer boredom-busters, look no further than the Youth and Families in the Outdoors Program (YO!) hosted by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW).

“It’s amazing how many outdoor opportunities are available in every corner of the state,” said CDFW Director Charlton H. Bonham. “From fishing lessons to guided nature tours, each of these events serves to encourage a deeper understanding of our wildlife and natural resources and cultivates a desire to learn about them.”

YO! maintains a calendar of kid- and family-friendly summer events around the state, including those sponsored by organizations and nonprofits unaffiliated with CDFW. To find the perfect summer opportunity, please check out the calendar at www.dfg.ca.gov/yo.

Just a few of the opportunities currently listed include:

  • Humboldt County: Discovery Museum (Eureka), PAL Camp “Water Week.” Summer camp for ages 5 to 12, July 9-13. Explore all of special water features in the Humboldt area – oceans, rivers, creeks, rain and more – and learn how water is essential to life. Lots of fun by way of water games and activities. For more information, please visit www.discovery-museum.org.
  • Tehama County:  Beginning Hunting Camps are for girls and boys ages 10 to 14 who wish to obtain their hunter education certificates. Various dates in June and July. Youth will also spend time outdoors learning to become ethical, safe and skilled anglers, shooters, archers and wildlife conservationists.  For more information, please visit www.mykosc.org.
  • Butte County:  Family Preschool Workshops for parents and children ages 3 to 5. Various dates in June and July. Offered by the Chico Creek Nature Center to give young children their first introduction to nature through games, crafts, group discussion and up-close observation. Both children and adults will enjoy learning about nature.  For more information, please visit www.bidwellpark.org.
  • Alameda County:  Camp of the Wild for girls and boys ages 9 to 12, July 8-12. Kids will spend time outdoors learning survival skills, such as how to build an outdoor shelter. One of many events offered by East Bay Regional Parks. For more information, please visit www.ebparks.org.
  • Fresno County:  Fresno Chaffee Zoo, “Young Naturalist: Sierra Field Biology” field trip for kids ages 11 to 17. July 30-August 3 (Friday Field Trip.) Discover the wonder of how animals, plants and humans are intertwined in the conservation of the majestic Sierra Nevada Mountains.  For more information, please visit www.fresnochaffeezoo.org.
  • Orange County:  Free Kid’s Fishing Clinic. Every Sunday from noon to 12:30 p.m. Come to the dockside at Dana Wharf and ask the experts all about fishing the deep blue sea. No reservations needed and fishing gear is provided. Follow up the clinic with a fishing trip from 12:45 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. One free child admission with a paid adult. For more information, please visit  www.danawharf.com.

The calendar will be updated regularly so please check back throughout the summer months.

YO! is a collaborative effort between CDFW and a number of outdoors-oriented foundations and organizations around the state. Its purpose is to facilitate the conservation, enhancement and restoration of our fish and wildlife and habitats through the education and participation of our youth in California’s outdoor heritage.

If you know of a family or youth-friendly outdoor event that is not listed on the calendar, please contact YO! at (916) 322-8933.