The heat of August is upon us. Find great ways to stay cool here!
1. Explore Crystal Grottoes Caverns in Boonsboro, Maryland. Crystal Grottoes Caverns is Maryland’s only show cave and has more formations per square foot than any cave known to man. Owner Jerry Downs proudly says it is the most naturally kept cave in the world. The temperature at Crystal Grottoes is what makes it the perfect summer attraction. It’s a constant 54 degrees year round, regardless of how high the outside temps soar. The caverns are open daily from April through November. Tours are offered every 30 minutes and group discount tickets are available by reservation only. Learn about the cave’s history and enjoy the cooler temperature.
2. Cool off in the lake at Greenbrier State Park in Boonsboro, Maryland. Greenbrier State Park is a multi-use park with a handful of recreational opportunities that center around a 42-acre man-made, freshwater lake. Visitors can enjoy swimming, canoeing, hiking, picnicking, fishing, relaxing on the beach and more. Lifeguards are on duty at the swimming area from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Rowboats and paddleboats are available to rent by the hour during the summer and visitors can bring their own boats as well (electric trolling motors only). The park often fills to capacity on summer weekends and holidays. When the park fills, all additional visitors are turned away without exception.
3. Tempt your tastebuds with cow-to-cone ice cream at Misty Meadow Farm Creamery in Smithsburg, Maryland.
Talk about farm fresh - the ice cream at Misty Meadow is made right on the Herbst’s farm! Choose from a wide array of delicious flavors, including seasonal offerings like peach, sweet cherry, maple walnut, pumpkin pie, peppermint stick, sugar cookie and more. Dairy free sorbets are also available. You may even be tempted by their Creamline Milk, in regular, chocolate and strawberry as well as cheddar cheese curds in six different flavors. Kids will enjoy a play area complete with pedal tractors and some of the farm animals are available to interact with visitors.
4. Float or paddle the scenic Antietam Creek with River & Trail Outfitters in Knoxville, Maryland.
Whether you’re interested in rentals or a guided trip, River & Trail has a variety of options available for tubing, kayaking and canoeing as well as shuttle service to get you to the start and pick you up from the end point of your journey. Named the “Best Summer Outdoor Activity” by Washingtonian Magazine, the River Tubing Antietam Creek Adventure is a popular way to spend 4-5 hours on the Antietam Creek. River & Trail also offers specialty trips during certains times of the year, like the Antietam Civil War Kayaking Tour, which begins with a delicious brunch at the Newcomer farmstead on Antietam National Battlefield.
5. Make a splash at Yogi Bear’s Water Zone & Pool at Jellystone Park in Williamsport, Maryland. You’re sure to have fun in the sun at Yogi Bear’s Water Zone! Two 400 foot water slides, Ranger’s Revenge and Picnic Plunge, will send you through a series of twists and turns before launching you into the water. There’s also a water playground with an interactive pool and an 8-foot raindrop that’s fun for all ages. Adults especially love the built-in seating with hydrotherapy jets! There’s an interactive splash pad with a pirate ship, complete with water cannons, a slide, blasters and more. In addition to Yogi Bear’s Water Zone & Pool, there’s also the heated Ranger Smith Pool. Both pools remain open through mid-September. Be sure to check the website for hours.