Youth sports tourism is a $9-billion-a-year industry, and when you’re spending your vacation time and cash on travel games, a number like that really hits home. That’s pretty much a baseball analogy, guys. #sportsball
Seriously though. The phenomenon of the family vacation budget going to kids’ sports travel is so common that they’ve even invented a word for it: Tourna-cation. But it doesn’t have to be that way, and that’s where Double Good Fundraising comes in. Do a fundraiser, do sports for free, take your family on a real vacation.
With the school season around the corner, we’ve thrown together a few options for a long weekend getaway with the fam.
A weekend in Austin leaves you with just enough time to squeeze in (literally, because pants) two big BBQ meals and tour the State Capitol. Get to South Congress Bridge by 7:00 pm to watch 1.5 million bats take flight. It can take over an hour for all the bats to make it out of their cave beneath the bridge, so bring snacks. Hold your popcorn bag close, unless you want a bat faceplanting into your bag. Save Sunday for Schlitterbahn. What’s a Schlitterbahn?! Oh, just a huge river-fed waterpark down the highway in New Braunfels.
Your kids will barely remember seeing the Liberty Bell, and they might not be impressed by Independence Hall where a group of rowdy dudes in wigs signed the Declaration of Independence. But they’ll totally remember you acting a fool after sprinting up the “Rocky Steps” that lead to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Don’t worry, you won’t look any dumber than the other people doing the exact same thing. Pro-tip: you may actually have to show them “Rocky” first.
Yep, we’re putting Disney World on the list, because a lot of fundraising can save a lot of budget. This works best for kids who are young enough to enjoy the wonder (so, like, under 80) but old enough to walk all day long. Hey, they’re the athletes; you should be the one complaining!
HUMBOLDT REDWOODS STATE PARK, CALIFORNIA
Shock your kids into silence by visiting this awesome state park where, if they’re not silent, you can let them scream into the abyss. On day one, get a load of those trees on the Avenue of the Giants, and on day two drive to a trailhead to walk through the forest of Endor. (Your kids are all caught up on the Stars Wars movies, right? No?! Tear open a bag of Butter Believe It and cue Netflix!)
CARLSBAD CAVERNS NATIONAL PARK, NEW MEXICO
None of these ideas wild enough? If you really want an out-of-this-world family adventure, try traveling inside of this planet by trekking into the natural wonder that is the Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico. A tip to the wise — if you want to leave a trail to find your way back, don’t leave popcorn. We don’t even want to know what you might find snacking its way toward your group!