Summertime is great and all, but sometimes the heat is a little too much. Sure, the sun gives us life, yada, yada, yada. But when the thermometer hits triple digits, AC starts to sound better than vitamin D.

Here's the problem. It’s summer! Staying indoors may be more comfortable, but who wants to spend the summer bored?

Not us. No-sir-ee. We’re way too cool to be bored, you and me. Which is why you’re reading this nifty article.

Here are 11 things you can do to scratch that summertime itch while keeping you cool and comfy indoors.

Solo Schtuff

Yeah, yeah. I know you have tons of friends, but sometimes a little solitude is a good thing.

If you find yourself craving some alone time, here are some ways you can embrace summer vibes without venturing outside.

1. Read a Book

Look. I’m a writer. Of course reading is going to be my first suggestion.

Here’s the thing. Summer is the perfect time to catch up on your reading. Just find a quiet, comfortable spot in your house and lose yourself in a good book.

If you're looking for something new to read, check out your local library or bookstore. And if literal reading isn't your thing, consider an audiobook.

2. Do Some Arts and Crafts

If reading isn’t your speed, then maybe this summer is the perfect time to lean into a creative streak.

Arts and crafts are a great way to express yourself. You can paint, draw, sculpt, make jewelry, crochet, weave, write, compose—you get the idea. There are tons of ways to be creative.

Plus, there are plenty of crafty options you can easily do on the cheap.

3. Tackle a Project You’ve Been Putting Off

You know that thing you’ve been meaning to do around the house that you’ve been putting off? Cleaning out the closet? Or repainting the guest room? Or reorganizing the kitchen?

Yeah, it may not be the most exciting way to pass a day, but summer is a wonderful time to get that stuff done.

And hey, once it’s done, it’s done. Then you can go do something more fun!

4. Learn to Do Something New

Have you always wanted to learn to play guitar? Or build your own website? Or make candles? Or any other fun DIY thing?

Well, get to it, slacker! No time like the present. 

Learning how to do something new is a fantastic way to pass some time while keeping cool. And it comes with the added bonus that you’ll be even better prepared for your next talent show.

Or the inevitable zombie apocalypse.

Family Fun

If you’re a parental type, indoor summer activities take on a whole new layer of complexity. Not only do you wanna find something that keeps you entertained, but you have to take the kids into account, too.

No worries. Here are several family-friendly options for air-conditioned entertainment.

5. Break Out the Board Games

Board games have been around forever. Not only that, but the world has gone digital. You may have forgotten all about the hours of analog fun to be had playing Monopoly, Sorry, or Chutes and Ladders.

(Geez. It looks like I’m shamelessly promoting Hasbro. As it happens, those were just the first classic board games I thought of. However, on an unrelated note, I’m totally open to lucrative partnerships in exchange for clever product placement in my writing.)

Board games range from cheap and simple to expensive, elaborate, and complex. So it doesn’t matter if your rug rats are 8 or 18. There’s almost certainly a board game out there your family will enjoy.

6. Build a Fort

Speaking of all-ages activities, you probably associate the classic pillow fort with small children. Well, slow your roll. It can be fun to see just how fancy you can get with more advanced pillow-building techniques with a slightly older crowd.

No matter how old your kids are, all you need are pillows, blankets, and imagination. (Cue the Pixar theme.)

7. Go All Out With a Movie Night

Yeah, I know it’s not earth-shattering to suggest watching a movie. But that’s not what I’m suggesting. I’m suggesting going all out while watching a movie.

Do it right. Decide on a show time. Make popcorn and have movie-theater candy on hand. Dim the lights. Watch a few trailers together before you start the featured film. And don’t you dare touch that pause button!

Dashing to the restroom during what you hope is a slow part of the story is a critical part of the movie theater experience!

8. Solve a Puzzle

You know what’s great about puzzles? So many things.

First, this is another all-ages kind of activity. Go with a simple puzzle for the young uns, or break out a 5,000-piece puzzle of a field of grass if you’re trying to keep a snarky teenager busy for a while.

Second, puzzles are cheap. Like, really cheap. Hours of fun for a few bucks. Who doesn’t like that?

And finally, you know how you always lose a few puzzle pieces and then find them years later? This is the moment when you lose them.

You’re creating memories, my friends!

Four years from now you’ll find that one piece that would have completed the puzzle you sold last year in a garage sale, and you’ll sigh, remember this article, and think, “Damn her, she was right. The memories …

Adult Group Activities

Whether you’re rocking the child-free lifestyle full-time or the kiddos are hanging out with the grandparents for a week, there’s a good chance you’re also up for some 18+ fun this summer, too.

Wow. That sounded way racier than I intended. Unless you’re into that. In which case, you know, let’s talk. [wink]

Here are a few mature options for the discerning grown-up looking for indoor summertime fun.

9. Have a Karaoke Party

Karaoke is an amazing option when you and your friends feel like doing something fun and a little bit silly.

And, yes. Karaoke is silly. So silly. Even if you’ve got an amazing voice, it’s still silly. I stand by this assessment, and I will not be swayed.

For the record, I’m not talking about going to a karaoke bar. I’m talking about doing it yourself right at home. There are whole YouTube channels devoted to karaoke tracks, complete with lyrics.

Even if you don’t have a mic or a pro set-up, you and your friends can easily rock out.

10. Plan a Progressive Dinner

If you’ve never done a progressive dinner, then you’re missing out.

A progressive dinner is a dinner that happens at multiple locations. The standard is a four-course meal with a different host for the appetizer, soup or salad, the main course, and dessert.

Is it an efficient way to dine? Hell, no. Each course will likely take at least 45 minutes, plus you’ll have to pile into cars and drive to someone else’s house for the meal to continue.

But is it fun? Absolutely. Plus, no one person/couple is stuck with all the clean-up.

11. Throw Some Sharp Things (In a Safe, Responsible Environment)

You know what’s really fun and totally air-conditioned and both reasonably priced and surprisingly safe? Axe throwing, my friends.

Axe throwing is the bee’s knees. It’s the cat’s pajamas. It’s the tiger's spots, the elephant's instep, and the caterpillar's kimono.

Hold up. Stop. I see that look. Don’t act surprised. You knew you were on Cascadia Axe Co.’s website. Of course I’m going to suggest axe throwing as a fun, indoor activity that’s ideal for summer—scratch that—any time of the year.

In all seriousness, it’s a fun activity that’s easy to learn, even if you’re brand new, and perfect for two people or ten. Plus, we have beer and cider.

What more could you want?


~Vex, Cascadia Axe Co.'s resident word nerd