I was lucky enough to have one of those quintessential summer evenings last night. The Cincinnati humidity was low, the breeze was cool, and the restaurant patio was lively with the sounds of a guitarist and singer. 

It made me realize that June is almost gone, summer is heating up, and there’s no more time to waste. Here are five things I’m resolving to do with my kids – all supported with the generosity of tens of thousands of donors to the ArtsWave Community Campaign – while the days are still long. 

Wednesdays on the Green, Clifton Cultural Arts Center
Catch it tonight or any Wednesday between now and August 3. Free, family-friendly concerts, food trucks, and a different hands-on art project each week. 

Patriotic Pops, Riverbend
On July 2, the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra conducted by John Morris Russell will celebrate Independence Day and the 75th Anniversary of the USO. Even better: Lawn tickets are free for kids 17 and younger, AND all ticketholders for the evening Patriotic Pops concert get FREE admission to Coney Island all day long. Start with a few rides beginning at 11 a.m., wear the kids out, then take your seat under the stars for a night of great music and inspiration.

Art Around Towne-Third Friday Art Walk, Fort Thomas
On July 15, and every third Friday, more than 30 local artist/artisan vendors, live music and plenty of food for purchase give you lots of good reasons to stroll around Fort Thomas. 

Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park, Hamilton
It's totally worth an afternoon to meander and explore one of the region’s most unique art parks and outdoor experiences. Check it out July 16 for the first annual Blues, Brews & BBQ event. Music starts at 2:30 p.m.

Dressing Downton, Taft Museum
I'll admit this might be more for me than my kids, but they remember that in the summer there is sometimes ice cream in the lovely Taft garden. We’ll head there on July 17 for the Third Sunday Funday. In addition to the Downton Abbey fashions, magician Brett Sears entertains at 2:30 p.m.


And if I didn’t have kids to keep busy? Two things more things I'd add to my list:

First, I’d sing with Collegium Cincinnati’s Summer Sing, a single week of evening rehearsals of Mozart’s Requiem, leading to a performance on the final day. Imagine the sense of accomplishment: one summer week = bucket-list Mozart!

Second, I’d check out one of the good-for-grown-ups theatrical productions at the Know Theatre or Warsaw Federal Incline Theater. From one-minute plays by local playwrights to musical classics like Chicago, there is something naughty, nice or noteworthy to be found on a stage near you, all summer long.

Cheers and happy summer!