10 things to do on a summer night.

chinese lanterns

I spent some time outside last night taking pictures of paper lanterns hanging from my trees, and while I looked around at the beautiful summer scenery I thought of all the great things to do on a summer night.

Here’s my list of 10 Things to do on a Summer Night:

  1. Skinny dip.  Chunky dunk.  Whatever you want to call it get naked and go for a dip.  It’s a very *ahem* liberating feeling.
  2. Go stargazing.  There’s nothing in the world like a starry summer night.  Learn some constellations while you’re at it.
  3. Find a county fair.  Ride all the rides, eat cotton candy and caramel apples and watch the Carnies.
  4. Sit outside with your feet up, music in your ear, and a cold drink in hand while you watch the sun go down.
  5. Go fishing in the darkYou’ve heard the song, right?  It’s actually really fun to go fishing in the dark.
  6. Make S’mores.  If you don’t have access to a fire pit do it over your barbecue or your stove.  Just make sure to eat it outside, it tastes better that way.
  7. Sleep out.  Outside, under the stars.  On your trampoline, in a tent, wherever it is, sleep out.
  8. Catch fireflies and make old fashioned lanterns with canning jars.
  9. Watch a fireworks show on a blanket snuggled up to someone you love.
  10. Go to a rodeo.  Nothing in the world makes me feel more like summer than a good old rodeo.

Anything to add?  Something I’m missing?

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Hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. I do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, home remodel projects, and cool DIY crafts you totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!


  1. meredith :

    1. Go on a NIGHT hike w/ your kids…flashlights, firefly nets, glow sticks and a big full moon to help light your way.

    2. Ah, spread out a blanket in the backyard (one that’s dark and secluded), and well, get it on.

    3. Use the kids’ trampoline or swing set once their asleep and have “how far can ya jump off the swing w/o breaking a hip” contests.

  2. Allison :


    I love this list! Getting it on shortly…

  3. Robyn :

    Allison, do you know of a location to catch fireflies in Utah? Because I miss them so much. We would go camping in Illinois and there would be literally hundreds of them in one place glittering in front of us.

    An idea for your list: I love sparklers at night any time of year!

    Set up a sheet and a projector and watch a movie in the back yard!

    • Allison :

      I wish I knew where to catch them here, I’ve only seen them once or twice, I think it’s a humidity thing.

      Great tips, thanks you!

  4. Lindsey :

    *snort* Chunky dunk?! I’ve never heard it called that. Gave me a big ol’ chuckle.

    • Allison :


      Isn’t that a great saying?

  5. kelleyn :

    Isn’t summer the best! We don’t have a fire pit, but that doesn’t stop us from making Smores in the Microwave. 15 seconds is all it takes to a mouth full of marshmellow and chocolate. Love your paper lanterns!

    • Allison :

      I used to microwave marshmallows all the time as a kid! Who cares how you get it that way, it’s perfection!

  6. Alison Fingar :

    1. Eating ice cream on the deck while it is still hot enough to make the ice cream drip down your cone and hand as you eat it. I’m in Alabama, so it would drip at 3am here!

    2. Go jump in a lake after dark with a noodle when ya ain’t got no clothes on. We call it “nekked noodling”. The ultimate in lazy and free…you float around on the noodle & don’t need to make an effort to swim. And well, you’re naked and it’s dark, so everyone is cool with their own nakedness and the nakedness of others!

    3. Sitting on a screened in porch with a ceiling fan and some good ol’ story-telling. Just the best with the whole family…and the stories get especially colorful after the little ones go to bed.

    • Allison :


      I need to try nekked noodling! Love all the ideas, especially the storytelling. :)

  7. nat :

    i was going to say that too….no lightening bugs here. i miss them. they mean summer to me.

    1. snowcones….i love bahama mama
    2. bike rides before bed around the block
    3. sit in front of a fan while watching the food network (currently happening)

    ps we used to skinny dip all the time growing up, (not together) it is freaking hot and humid in south jersey in august, you need a quick dip in the pool before bed. :)

    • Petit Elefant :

      Snow cones for sure! I always get pina colada, but I’m going to have to try Bahama Mama.

      Bike rides before bed? You’re the best mom on the block!

      I need a fan!

    • Petit Elefant :

      I wish I had a place to skinny dip right now. Should I jump someone’s fence?


  8. Rachael :

    Chunky Dunk! You name the place and I’m there!

    • Petit Elefant :

      Um. Well, let’s find a pool and I’m in!

  9. Melissa :

    I say you should add popsicles to the list. Making them, but mostly eating them!

    Chris & I found a secret park in the middle of Downtown SLC where we plan to chill on the soft grass with popsicles in hand.

    • Allison :

      I’m eating popcicles as fast as I can. Especially since the A/C has taken a vacation this summer.

  10. Katrina Babic :

    Awww. you made me teary eyed with this one! {I am a little like that} With two little girls it brings back summer’s night dreams… I hope my kiddos have nice memories when they grow up too, that is why we do most of this stuff also :)

    • Allison :

      I cry at the drop of a hat, so no worries.

      I want to make memories with my kids, that’s my whole life objective.


  11. kim @ mommyknows :

    I love the photo. It is fantastic.

    I love to sit around a campfire on a summer night.

    • Allison :

      Thank you, the lanterns were so much fun to photograph!

      Campfire, yes, and yes. We actually have a pit in our backyard and we use it all the time in the summer. Love it.