(StatePoint) Do you have treasured childhood memories of spending time outdoors with your parents or grandparents? This summer, take the time to share this experience with your own children. Pack a lunch, put on some sunscreen and take them on your own hiking or fishing adventure.
The time you spend outdoors with kids is where some of their best memories will come from and can be a great way to teach valuable life lessons.
"Beyond fresh air and an expansive playground, the outdoors provide an opportunity to pass key values on from one generation to the next, like sportsmanship, environmental stewardship and the importance of friendship," says Mike Holliday, a father of three and world-class fishing guide from Stuart, Florida, who wrote the "FishingKids" series of books aimed at luring kids into outdoor adventure and family fun.
You can get the whole family prepared for your trip in advance:
o Read the FishingKids series together. The stories revolve around two best friends, Spinner and Bobber whose fishing adventures teach them about friendship and responsibility. When fun turns to trouble they look to Spinner's grandfather, Chief, to help them sort things out. Chief teaches them about fishing, friendship and responsibility. In the FishingKids world, it is always summer, life lessons are learned and everything turns out for the best.
o Before you head for the dock, make sure you're prepared. At www.TakeMeFishing.org, you'll find everything you need to know about planning a successful fishing trip with a child. The site is packed with tips and tricks, as well cool tools like a marina finder and a fishing hotspot locator. Kids will enjoy the games in the Little Lunkers section.
o Gear up! In addition to the chapter book series, FishingKids offers a line of action figures, toys and gear that gives children the opportunity to imagine outdoor adventures even after the boat returns to the dock. FishingKids books, toys, clothing and gear are available at www.FishingKids.com.
o Be sure to check out the fishing activities in your area, too. Many communities hold Youth Fishing events and clinics during the summer. These events are often free, and young anglers may take home a bag of goodies from event sponsors.
This summer, take the opportunity to get outdoors and connect with the people who matter most.