12 Dates to Help You Beat the Heat

Health Writer

It's hot outside. Some people love the heat of summer and others find it unbearable. But just because it is hot outside doesn't mean you have to forego having fun together or enjoying the outdoors together. The following are 12 summer date ideas that will help you beat the summer heat and still have fun:

Take a ride. Okay, gas is expensive these days but if you forego the expensive dinner and use it for gas money and some sandwiches along the way, you can take a scenic ride in your air-conditioned car. You'll feel like you are spending time outdoors together but will stay comfortable inside the car. Stop at a small restaurant along the way to share burgers and milkshakes.

Head to the cool spots. Depending on where you live, there are probably areas that are cool and comfortable. In my area, it is the Pocono Mountains where it is usually 5 to 10 degrees cooler than at home. It might be a mountains or a shady nook along a river. Find a place you can retreat to on the hot days for a picnic.

Take in a movie. If the heat is too oppressive to consider a picnic, check out what is playing at the movie theatre and spend the afternoon taking in one, or several, movies.

Visit a museum. Like the movies, museums are air conditioned. Choose something you are both interested in, such as art, music or history and find museums in your area where you can wander around and share your interest. If you would rather, take one day to visit a museum of your choice and the next hot day is your partner's choice. This gives you a chance to learn about the other person's interests.

Browse bookstores or the local library. Choose some books to read to one another, but remember to be respectful of the people around you - don't read aloud in the library.

Buy water guns and have a water gun fight. You can still be outside but the water will help you stay cool.

Go to a water park. Splash in the water, ride the water slides and enjoy the great outdoors while wet and cool.

Go window shopping. Spend time indoors in the mall, but make a point of not spending any money. Stop in front of the store windows and choose one item you would buy, then have your partner do the same. You can learn a lot about each other by paying attention to what they would buy.

Go for ice cream. Head for your favorite ice-cream parlor and buy one of the sundaes made for two so you can share.

Buy a kiddie pool big enough for the two of you to sit in and cool off sitting in your backyard in the pool.

Throw water balloons. It takes time to fill the balloons, but if you do it with the hose you have the added benefit of spraying each other with the hose. Fill up enough balloons so you each have an arsenal and then choose a target.

Go tubing. Head to a lake or river to enjoy a slow tubing ride. Many areas have tubing rides, where you start at one area of a river and at the end of the ride, they shuttle you back to your car. Check to see if there are any in your area. Kayaking will also work.

If you are choosing one of the summer fun ideas that involves being outside, make sure to include sunscreen and protective clothing. After a day having fun together you don't want one of you to end up sunburned.