By Chris Griffy
Summer is almost over and the days are growing shorter. While autumn brings its own wonder of activities, there’s something about summer fun with the family that builds lasting memories. Fortunately, Atlanta offers plenty of family-friendly events and festivals throughout August for those last minute family outings. From movies to ice cream to dinosaurs and more, here are some of Atlanta’s best end of summer activities.
Flick-Nic In Candler Park
Candler Park in Front of the Pool House
McLendon Ave. N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30307
Date: Aug. 5 and 19 and Sept. 9, 2017 at dusk
With movie ticket prices, taking the family out to the movies can be a pricey affair. But for families looking for a more budget-friendly and community-oriented affair, the Friends of Candler Park offer their “Flick-nic” nights. The festivities begin an hour before dusk at Candler Park, with live music and families encouraged to pack a picnic dinner. Then, at dusk, the free movies begin. On Aug. 5, the animated musical Sing will be screened. On Aug. 19, the 2016 live-action remake of Disney’s The Jungle Book will be on offer. For those looking to extend the fun into September, they will also screen Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Sept. 9.
Solar Eclipse Celebration
Children’s Museum of Atlanta
275 Centennial Olympic Park Drive N.W.
Atlanta, GA 30313
Date: Aug. 19, 2017, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
While the Solar Eclipse won’t hit Atlanta until Aug. 21, the Children’s Museum of Atlanta is using the Saturday prior to celebrate the event with their Solar Eclipse Programs. Fun and educational programs for the whole family will be held. There will be a Glow in the Dark Dance Party with a moon and sun inspired playlist of songs by The Imaginators. There will be a storytime with Nancy Coffelt reading The Big Eclipse. And of course, the museum’s Science Bar, Art Studio, and Build It Labs will all be operational with special eclipse-related activities.
Dinosaur Birthday Bash
Fernbank Museum of Natural History
767 Clifton Road N.E.
Atlanta, GA 30307
Date: Aug. 19, 2017 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
What kid doesn’t love a dinosaur? For that matter, what adult doesn’t love a dinosaur? If that sounds like you, then the Fernbank Museum of Natural History is the place to be on Aug. 19 as they present their annual Dinosaur Birthday Bash. This event celebrates the opening of the museum’s Giants of the Mesozoic exhibit. In addition to the usual fossil casts of the Argentinosaurus, Gignatosaurus, and more, there will also be dinosaur related events throughout the day. Kids are encouraged to dress in their favorite dinosaur costumes.
Related: Best Places to Picnic in Atlanta
Summer Shade Festival
840 Cherokee Ave. S.E.
Atlanta, GA 30315
Date: Aug. 26-27, 2017
One of the highlights of summer’s end in Atlanta, Grant Park’s Summer Shade Festival is entering its 15th year. The two day festival benefits the Grant Park Conservatory and is free to the public. Events at the festival include a 5k race and live music both days. There will also be a Kid’s Zone, with children’s concerts, yoga, storytelling, handicrafts, and Water Wars, where they can cool off with a variety of squirters. There is also an artist market for the adults in the family to enjoy.
Miss Mary’s Ice Cream Crankin’
Roswell Square Park
610 Atlanta St.
Roswell, GA 30075
Date: Aug. 27, 2017 from 2-4 p.m.
Nothing says summer quite like homemade ice cream. And Miss Mary’s Ice Cream Crankin’ celebrates just that. In its 13th year, this benefit for The Drake House is an ice cream lover’s dream as teams of corporate, civic, community, and faith-based teams compete for prizes that include Best Vanilla, Best Chocolate, Best Fruit, Best Other Flavor, and this year a Best Kids competition. Over 100 different homemade ice creams will be served at the event. Kids can also enjoy face painting, a bouncy house, and ice cream eating and stacking competitions.
Related: Best Donuts in Atlanta