- Tabatha Wharton
Get out your tarot cards, cleanse your crystals and check your astrological birth chart. The summer solstice is once again upon us.
Regardless of your belief (or lack thereof) in the pagan traditions of old, the scientific summer solstice, also known as the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, occurs Wednesday, June 21, at 12:24 a.m. EDT. That's when Earth reaches its maximum tilt and the sun is directly over the Tropic of Cancer in the Northern Hemisphere, creating the maximum amount of daylight from sunrise to sunset.
We'll have 93 precious days until the autumnal equinox occurs at 4:02 p.m. Friday, Sept. 22.
Summer goes fast, so let's make the most of it. Here are our seven favorite ways to celebrate the official beginning of summer and to keep celebrating all summer long.
1.) Plan a picnic
Take advantage of the near-endless sunlight and take your meal al fresco. Whether you’re in your back yard, at a nearby park, or make an adventure out of going somewhere new, nourishing your body in the basking glow of sunlight is a prime way to welcome summer.
>> MORE: Where to go for a picnic in Dayton
2.) Get active
The Dayton area is chock-full of great ways to become one with nature — if by becoming one you mean breaking a sweat while taking in some breathtaking views.
>> MORE: The best biking trails in Dayton
3.) Go swimming
Nothing quite says summer like putting on a swimsuit and getting drenched. Whether you fancy a leisurely jaunt through a splash pad or a relaxing day by the pool, let yourself commune with water (just as long as you remember your sunscreen)!
4.) Camp out
Forego modern structural and technological conveniences altogether and become one with the woods (or campsite). Besides, nothing says earthy summer nights than a campfire and of course, s’mores.
5.) Become a kid again
Pay homage to Mother Earth by getting in touch with your inner child. Be silly with your kids, or call up your friends for some old school playground games like tag or red rover and bask in the unbridled joy of carefree summers, if only for a day.
Fill your face and your soul with sweet treats and delicious delicacies best enjoyed while the weather is warm and the sun is bright. Bonus points for partaking in your food of choice while on a patio or other outside seating.
7.) Take a road trip
Sometimes the best thing you can do is just get out of town. Go explore somewhere new, whether it’s across town or across the state. Use the sunlight to help you burn up the road and create memories you won’t soon forget.
>> MORE: 7 must-see sights worth the drive