It’s almost August, which means trying to get in the last bit of sunshine and summer fun- bonfires, swimming, and summer romance. If you haven’t experienced a summertime love firsthand, I am sure you have seen some version of it on TV. Maybe it’s the lifeguard at your neighborhood swimming pool; maybe it’s your nextdoor neighbor who’s home from college for the next few months…no matter where you meet your Romeo or Juliet, remember to have fun and to be safe!

Here are a few tips to help you make the most of the hot weather, that summertime freedom, and new and exciting relationships:

  • A lot of public Parks and Rec departments offer summertime activities in your local area- try checking out the options online or in your newspaper. Frankfort, for example, does a great event series called Shakespeare in the Park! You pack a picnic, grab a blanket, and head to the park to catch some sun and broaden your cultural horizons…not to mention, there’s nothing like a romantic tragedy to spark some interesting conversation! If Shakespeare isn’t really your speed, there is also a Summer Concert Series happening downtown! Check online or in the paper for details.
  • Summer is also a great time to get outside and be active! Studies have shown that physical activity is a great way to bond and increase your feelings of synchronicity.* Good for the body and your relationship! We are lucky to have some really great hiking areas and public parks in Kentucky, so take advantage of those! *http://www.learnvest.com/2012/05/exercise-good-for-your-body-and-your-relationship/
  • A particularly cool thing about Harrodsburg and Georgetown (both pretty close to Frankfort) is that they are homes to two of Kentucky’s throwback drive-in movie theatres! Sometimes on the summer weekends they will offer 2-movie specials or discounted weekend pricing for an inexpensive and fun date night!

So now that you know where to go for a fun and unusual date night, here come a few tips for how to stay smart and safe during these warm nights:

  • It’s always a good idea to let someone know where you’re going to be. Now, before you call me a “square,” this someone does not have to be your mother. This is just be sure, especially if you plan on getting lost on some hiking trail or bike path, that someone knows where you are and has a way to get in touch in case of emergencies.
  • In addition to letting someone know where you are, be mindful of the position you are putting yourself in. Take care to make wise decisions that do not leave you in compromising situations. Dates in public places or with other couples or in a group are safe options, providing you with a low-pressure, fun environment. It’s OK to stand firm about this, making sure you have control over your decision-making.
  • Be sure if you are going to be engaging in outdoor activities, especially during the prime sun hours (11am-3pm), to stay hydrated! This is so, so important so don’t skimp! There is nothing like a fainting episode and a trip to the E.R. for dehydration to spoil the romantic mood on a date, so take care of you!
  • Along that same line, be sure to use plenty of SPF if you will be in the sun. Apply and reapply to be sure and keep your skin looking dewy and fresh!

I hope these have been helpful tips for a fun and safe time, whether you find yourself in the middle of a romance or not!

-Emi Cooper, AFW Blogger