Summers are usually pretty hard for working parents. From figuring out childcare to having the patience to take everyone on a vacation, parents need resources. It’s especially hard after this past year with so many of them (working moms especially) having to act as teachers too. Summer is no picnic either.
A 2019 study conducted by OnePoll, in conjunction with Groupon, examined the summer wishlists of 2,000 parents. The results revealed that parents would rather do a number of boring, mundane, and even stressful things than plan their kids’ summer. 25% of them said they would rather stand in line at the DMV!
While the chamber is not in the childcare business–nor should it be–helping your working parent members by creating or finding valuable summer content could be a life saver for a group that’s already struggling.
So if you’re ready, let’s explore some fun, kid-approved summer content for your chamber to share with your working parent business community.
15 Summer Fun Ideas for Your Working Parent Members and Their Kids
These are relatively easy content ideas that you can create or curate from your members. This content is not only helpful to parents, some of it provides a great way to showcase members and community organizations.
Provide a List of Camps
This is one every fatigued parent needs: a list of camps in your area. Try to find some really unique camps. Check with museums and other organizations to see what they offer. Compile a list, publish it on your website, and circulate it on social media.
Go the extra mile: since we’re late in the camp sign-up season, check with each camp individually and find out who still has space. This helps the frustrated parent and the camp that needs to fill space at the last minute.
Host a Contest
There are so many different kinds of contests that kids can participate in. From essay contests on “the best summer ever” to coloring contests or pet costume contests, from song writing contests about your town to ideas for how to make your area better, the only limits are your imagination.
You can judge them through a panel, a random draw of people who completed the assignment, or a social media contest where people vote for their favorites with likes. The latter is always a big draw because everyone wants to see their child get the most votes. People share those posts with the same energy they sell their daughters’ Girl Scout cookies.
Don’t have money for a prize? No worries. Go through your donations or past events bin. You’re bound to find something a child would like. Plus, knowing they won whatever it is through something they created will make it even more special.
Host a Field Day Competition
Get your businesses, especially those owned by working parents, involved in this one and host a field day competition with duos or teams comprised of children and adults as they battle it out for “best in town” designations. Businesses can sponsor activities or contests, shirts/teams, or a million other parts of this event. It can be a fun mix of serious and silly events with equally silly awards at the end.
Post wrap up pics and commentary on social media. This could be the type of thing people talk about for a while. Check out what the Mason City Chamber did with their Chamber Cup competition (their event was for adults but it could easily be tailored to include youngsters too). The Stateline Chamber just hosted one, too.
Publish Pool Hours and Events
Sometimes sharing important information (like community pool hours) is all it takes to put a smile on someone’s face and get more hits to your website. While it may not feel like these types of posts are “business related,” they are extremely helpful to your community audience and continues your reputation as the group to go to when they need answers and information.
Feature Museums, Nature Centers, and Attractions in Your Area
Many of these types of activities are struggling due to earlier COVID shutdowns. Now is the ideal time to bring attention to staycation places nearby. Spotlight special events, camps, or learning opportunities they are hosting as well. Some may even have overnight activities.
Post Daily Content Kids Will Log on to See
You can create a “kids corner” on your website or on social media where you post daily trivia, polls, or other kid-friendly content. Conversation starter ideas for working parents can also add some summer entertainment as well.
Provide Food Insecurity Help
While summer usually brings thoughts of happy-go-lucky beach days, for many children it can also be a time of hunger. When they are in school, they receive meals. When they’re at home for the summer, some do not. In your community there are likely many sources of free meals for those under 18. Our library hosts ours.
Share this information with your community. You are not only helping low-income working parents get their children the resources and sustenance they need, but you are also helping nonprofits bring to light the need for food for school children when the children are not in school. Someone may donate to the cause because of the awareness you raised.
Blog About Free Options
People love to share helpful content. A blog post on “10 free things to do with your family in _______ city” could be a big winner. Also consider highlighting what makes your area a favorite for families. Posts like this can get a lot of traction, not just in your community but elsewhere as well. Make sure you include a link to your chamber in the article so that if it gets picked up and shared elsewhere, everyone will know where the content came from.
Share Events at the Library
Post local library events or add them to your community calendar. A library is a cool place to hang out during the summer (literally, too, they usually have great AC.). Most have summer reading programs that offer rewards for reading.
Compile a List of Summer Reading Programs
Read books, get rewarded. Why, oh why don’t they have these programs for adults?
It’s likely your community has at least one, maybe several ways, to earn some impressive prizes by simply reading. Our local library system, in conjunction with the Tampa Bay Rays, offers free game tickets to children who complete 24 hours of reading over the summer. That’s a really nice award. Help working parents find these great opportunities more easily.
Social Media Posts
Okay, so this won’t entertain the kiddies but it will get some posts and shares. Invite parents to share their funniest summer pics on your social media page. Everyone will enjoy the laugh.
You could also create weekly posts encouraging parents to share their favorite things in the community for kids. You could build quite the following around these weekly shares.
We All Scream for Ice Cream
Invite people to share their favorite ice cream place in your town on social media or create a poll and invite people to vote for it. The businesses will enjoy the free exposure. Suggest to your ice cream parlors that they share their summer specials or new flavors, too.
Outdoor Movie Listings
If your community runs outdoor movies, add the information to your community calendar. Help get the word out.
Post a Favorite Bike Path or Walking Route
Tell people about local walking, running, and biking paths. If your town is known for hikes, post a list of them along with difficulty levels, especially for kids. Approach bike, hiking, or outdoor sports companies to see if they want to be featured near this content.
Compile a Reading List
Talk to your community leaders and find out what their favorite book was as a child or what book had the biggest impression on them. Ask working parents and entrepreneur parents to share what turned them on to business! Post this list. It can provide really interesting insights into leaders and give people a different view of a powerful person. Involve your staff too in sharing their favorites. Provide links in the post to your local book stores.
Creating kid content may not be on your most important list of things to do but if you’re trying to reach more people and get more engagement, it can go a long way to doing that. Working parents (and especially working moms who struggled during COVID) are looking for resources and things to do with their kids. Your chamber can provide good information and help local businesses at the same time.