TOLEDO, Ohio — It may seem like summer break just started, but once you start to see back-to-school specials you know your summer's about to come to an end.
Most of us have some summer must-do's -- those places, events and activities that make a summer complete.
Hurry, before the pools and beaches close for the summer and you're faced with pumpkin-spice lattes and holiday displays in stores.
Eat some ice cream -- Nothing beats a trip for ice cream on a warm night. Luckily for us, the Toledo area has so many great ice cream shops you could spend all summer trying to get to them all.
Catch a Mud Hens game at Fifth Third Field -- The Mud Hens' regular season continues through late September with the last home game scheduled for Sept. 25.
Also, if you missed the Hensville Inflatable Theme Parks at earlier games, you still have a few more chances to check out inflatables at Hensville Park. The special bounce house event will happen July 31, Aug. 14 and Aug. 28. Admission to the inflatable theme park is free with a ticket to that day's Mud Hens game.
Outdoor concerts -- No summer is complete without an outdoor concert. In Toledo you can check out the ProMedica Concert Series, which continues at Promenade Park downtown through Sept. 16's Patti LaBelle show, or check out Music Under the Stars at the Toledo Zoo, which has performances by Cake Walkin' Jass Band (July 31), Genoa American Legion Band (Aug. 7) and Perrysburg Symphony Orchestra (Aug. 14) remaining this year.
Jeep Fest -- Toledo's Fifth Jeep Fest returns to downtown Aug. 12-14. Check out rare and custom Jeeps all weekend, watch the All-Jeep Parade Saturday morning, check out the Jeep off-road course or take in some live music.
Discover a new Toledo Metropark -- With a metropark within five miles of every Lucas County resident, there are plenty of places to explore. Summer is a great time to venture out and discover a trail, playground or activity at a metropark you haven't visited before.
Historic canal boat experience -- Experience what life was like in northwest Ohio during the late 1800s with Providence Metropark's Historic Canal Experience, which is available May through October each year.
Visitors can encounter period re-enactors at historic Lock #44 who will share what life was like on the Ohio and Erie Canal in the 1870s.
Get out to the Lake Erie islands -- About 11 million people a year visit the Lake Erie shore and the islands in the western portion of the lake, contributing more than $2 billion a year to the regional economy. Many of those visitors have to travel from around Ohio and other states to enjoy the lake, but it's right in our backyard.
From beaches and fishing to swimming and catching a ferry to an island for the day or the weekend, there's plenty of summer fun to be had BUT the season to enjoy this outdoor playground is limited each year.
Visit the Toledo Zoo -- For many northwest Ohio families, summer is not complete with out a zoo day. Along with new sea lions and a newly hatched cinereous vulture chick, the zoo will host Twilight Thursdays, featuring extended hours (the zoo will be open until 9 p.m.) and special experiences every Thursday through Aug. 25.
Hit the Toledo Night Market -- A twist on the traditional farmers market, the Toledo Night Market features food, shopping, drinks and live music at the site of the Toledo Farmers Market, 525 Market St., Toledo. The last two night markets of the season are scheduled for Aug. 20 and Sept. 17.
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