Get out and enjoy summer!

Written by Amy Palser

When the temperatures go up, Wichitans get out! There’s plenty to do this summer across the city. Plan a night out with friends by hitting up ICT Food Trucks, followed by a concert or musical. Keep your kids occupied with summer camps and events at local museums. Get the family off the couch and into the great outdoors with horseback riding or biking the city’s miles of paved trails. Here’s a smattering of things happening in the city over the summer months, but keep up to date daily with the calendar at Wichita.com.

Family Fun

SUMMER LEARNING CAMPS
Keep kids’ hands and brains active this summer with Exploration Place’s large lineup of summer camps, starting at age 4 and going through ninth grade. Preschoolers can decorate aircraft like aviation designers in Art and Airplanes, make a robot move in Little Coders and play with their food in Foodie Fun. Students entering grades 1-6 will learn the engineering design process at In the Factory, create characters and worlds in Minecraft Mania! and dive into underwater creatures in Under the Sea (in partnership with Music Theatre Wichita’s production of “The Little Mermaid”). Even older kids in grades 5-9 can get in on the action with TinkerTech Summer Camps. For more information visit exploration.org.

FAMILY NIGHT HIKE
Explore Botanica like never before — in the dark with a series of hikes to find nocturnal plants and creatures! The “Moonlight Meadow Night Hike” is happening May 18 and also includes supper over the fire, s’mores and live music on the garden lawn. For more information, visit botanica.org. And if you’re on the hunt for activities to keep kids busy and learning over the summer months, check out Botanica’s daily drop-in activities, Garden Story Time and Monster Plant Camp!

GAME TIME
Kids and parents alike will enjoy playing the video games of yesteryear at The Arcade, 139 N. Mead St. For just $10 for adults or $8 for kids ages 10 and under, you can spend the whole day mastering (or re-mastering) 60-plus retro arcade games like Pac-Man, Centipede, Tetris, Punch Out and Q*bert. For more information or hours visit thearcadewichita.com.

FOOD TRUCKS
Whether you’re in the mood for brats, brews, burgers, barbecue or baked goods, Wichita Food Trucks are out and about in force during the warm months. To find out where the mobile chefs will be each day, visit wichitafoodtrucks.com, or search Wichita Food Trucks on Facebook and Twitter. Besides the standard cuisine, don’t miss some of the great ethnic and unusual food being served up!

ICT POP-UP URBAN PARK
Whether for coffee, brunch, lunch or dinner, grab food with friends at this hip park near Douglas and Market, featuring umbrella-covered tables and games. Compete against a coworker in a game of Ping-Pong or explore the local artwork scattered throughout the park, all while enjoying free Wi-Fi.

WSU FOOD TRUCK PLAZA
Wichita State University partners with Wichita Food Trucks to feature a rotation of area food truck vendors weekdays. Don’t miss favorites like LoLo's Crêpes, the Kamayan Truck’s Asian-influenced fare and LumpiaPalooza’s Filipino egg roll. The plaza is located on the Innovation Campus.

FOOD TRUCKS AT THE FOUNTAIN
A food truck rally hosted by the Flying Stove will be held at Wichita Waterwalk the last Sunday of each month throughout the summer. Take part in the free yoga class at 10 a.m., followed by live music and a host of food trucks from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information check out the Flying Stove online or on Facebook or Twitter.

Festivals and parties

WICHITA RIVERFEST
You won’t want to miss the city’s biggest festival of the year June 1-9. It features outdoor concerts, children’s activities, food, fireworks, water events and the River Run race. This year’s headliners include Prince’s band, The Revolution; Grammy-nominated Cypress Hill; alt-rocker Liz Phair; country singer Randy Houser; and Bob Marley’s son, Stephen Marley. For a complete list of events visit wichitariverfest.com.

SPLURGE! PARTY
Celebrate summer with your favorite Wichita magazine at Crestview Country Club June 15 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. The 18th Green BKD Suite is the site for the highly anticipated party that kicks off more than a week of events associated with the Air Capital Classic. This year’s Splurge! Party beneficiary is Raise My Head Foundation, which provides healing and restoration for women breaking free from sex trafficking. For more information, check out the ad in this month’s issue, or visit the SPLURGE! Facebook page.

Concerts and entertainment

MUSIC THEATRE OF WICHITA
Each summer at Century II Performing Arts Center in downtown Wichita, Music Theatre Wichita self-produces five Broadway-scale musical productions, using a unique mixture of top-flight professionals from Broadway and Hollywood working hand-in-hand with talented Midwesterners. This summer’s lineup starts with the hilarious and heartfelt “Sister Act” June 13–17, followed by the classic “Guys and Dolls” June 27–July 1. Next up is Disney’s “Freaky Friday” July 11–15, followed by the sexy and Cirque du Soleil-esque “Pippin” July 25–29. The season ends with the family friendly Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” Aug. 8–18. For more information visit mtwichita.org.

WICHITA GRAND OPERA
The new Mark Arts at 13th and Rock is the spot for the Wichita Grand Opera’s social event of the year: The Annual Opera Ball on May 12. On tap are great music, cocktails, dancing and luxury auctions in support of WGO. Then, don’t miss the opera’s gift to the community, Opera on the Lake at Bradley Fair. This year’s “Popera: Simply Irresistible” on May 31 will delight audiences as they enjoy amazing vocal performances from lawn chairs and blankets. For tickets or information, visit wichitagrandopera.org.

Hometown sports

WICHITA WINGNUTS
Head to a Wingnuts home game at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium and stay for the fireworks after Friday night games. A complete schedule is available at wichitawingnuts.com.

NBC WORLD SERIES
The National Baseball Congress World Series games are July 27 to Aug. 11 at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium. NBC consists of 15 amateur and semi-professional baseball leagues operating in the United States and Canada. For more information visit nbcbaseball.com.

Great outdoors

HORSEBACK RIDING
Wichita Riding Academy offers private and semi-private riding lessons, along with a variety of summer camp options for kids. Lessons cover saddle seat, hunt seat and western style riding. To find out more, contact Cheryl Manahan at 316.651.0876 or cheryl@wichitaridingacademy.com.

WALK AND BIKE WICHITA
Wichita has numerous walking and biking paths. For walking, try Chisholm Creek Park near the Great Plains Nature Center (gpnc.org). The 282-acre park has 2 ½ miles of paved trails. For biking, check out wichita.gov for maps of the city’s 100 miles of maintained bike paths and lanes.

 
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