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How to Savor Vermont's Shortest, Sweetest Season 

click to enlarge Bert Sheehan, 2, at North Beach in Burlington - CAT CUTILLO
  • Cat Cutillo
  • Bert Sheehan, 2, at North Beach in Burlington

We made it! School is over, COVID-19 restrictions have loosened up, and many of our favorite places are open again.

To help you get out and enjoy them, we pulled together this list of tried-and-true summer activities. Look for more details about location and hours online. And remember to pack sunscreen — and face masks; some attractions still require them.

Hit the Beach

If you're looking for a place to build sandcastles or go for a swim, head to the Champlain Islands. Both Sandbar State Park and Alburgh Dunes State Park offer beach access. Stop at Seb's Snack Bar in South Hero for lunch or a killer creemee.

Other options: North Beach, Burlington; Elmore State Park, Elmore; Boulder Beach State Park, Groton

Hop on a Bike

For a scenic ride, try the Island Line Trail, which connects Burlington to South Hero via the Colchester Causeway. A bike ferry runs daily until October to bridge the gaps. For something a little more adventurous, head to Kingdom Trails in East Burke, or find a place to ride through the Vermont Mountain Bike Association.

Other options: Stowe Recreation Path, Missisquoi Valley Rail Trail, Montpelier Recreation Path

Appreciate Art

click to enlarge Lemon Fair Sculpture Park - KEN PICARD
  • Ken Picard
  • Lemon Fair Sculpture Park

If you've never seen Bread and Puppet Theater in action, now's your chance. The iconic Glover-based theater troupe will present "Our Domestic Resurrection Circus" on Saturdays and Sundays from July 10 through August 29. Tack on a visit to the Bread and Puppet Museum — a big barn packed to the rafters with political art — as well as the nearby Museum of Everyday Life. Grab lunch at Parker Pie.

Other options: Cold Hollow Sculpture Park, Enosburg Falls; Lemon Fair Sculpture Park, East Shoreham; Shelburne Museum

Pick Berries

Few things taste quite as sweet as fresh-picked berries. Raspberries and blueberries will be ready in July at Adam's Berry Farm in Charlotte.

Other options: Isham Family Farm, Williston; Owl's Head Blueberry Farm, Richmond; Sam Mazza's You-Pick berries, Colchester; Last Resort Farm, Monkton

Visit a Swimming Hole

click to enlarge Maple-chocolate twist at Canteen Creemee - SALLY POLLAK
  • Sally Pollak
  • Maple-chocolate twist at Canteen Creemee

Nearly everyone in Vermont has a favorite swimming hole, but people are tight-lipped about where to find them. Explore a collection of them, along with directions, at madrivervalley.com/swim. Stop at Canteen Creemee in Waitsfield for a frozen treat.

Learn Something

There's no admission fee at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in Vergennes this summer. Some of the exhibits are closed, but there's still plenty to see. Snag a scoop of small-batch, artisan ice cream at Lu•lu.

Other options: Rokeby Museum, Ferrisburgh; Vermont History Museum, Montpelier; Montshire Museum, Norwich; ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington; Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium, St. Johnsbury

Watch a Game

Word on the street is that the Vermont Lake Monsters are pretty good this year. See them in action at Centennial Field in Burlington.

Other options: The Tokyo Olympics takes place July 23 through August 8. Vermont Mountaineers, Montpelier; Thunder Road Speedbowl, Barre

Attend a Concert, Parade or Festival

Find out which ones are happening in 2021 by searching the Seven Days event listings.

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