Toledo activities and events to enjoy the great outdoors and brighten your day!
Getting outside and connecting to nature is a sure-fire way to bring a little sunshine to your day. Exposure to sunlight is thought to increase serotonin, which elevates mood and increases focus. Sunshine can literally bring a smile to your face!
Besides that, sunlight helps us build vitamin D--the vitamin responsible for strong bones--and can aid in cancer prevention. Individuals with skin conditions and immune disorders have also seen improvements with moderate sunlight exposure.
In short, playing outside isn't just for kids--we can all benefit from it! Whether you prefer solo excursions or group activities, we have something for you.
We compiled a list of our favorite outdoor activities and events in the Toledo area that start now and continue through September. Connecting to nature is our greatest resource for connecting back to ourselves, and we can learn so much simply from observing the effortless cycles of nature.
1. TOLEDO METROPARKS
From trail challenges to summer camps, our Toledo Metroparks have it all. Bring the family to play on the playground or enroll in one of the many programs our parks offer, including summer camps for the little ones.
Yogaja teachers Brittany Wilkewitz and Chloe Littzen partake in all that the Metroparks offer. Brittany recommends “The expo day at the Metroparks! You get to try all the outdoor activities like kayaking and backpacking.”
Chloe enjoys “Kayaking at the metropark, kite surfing at the lake, and road biking in Oak Openings!”
2. THE UNIVERSITY/PARKS TRAIL
Technically the bike trail is part of the Metroparks, but it deserves its own mention. The trail connects University of Toledo to Wildwood Metropark and continues on to King Road in Sylvania township. Grab a bike or some rollerblades and make a day of it. The bike trail links to the playground/picnic area of Wildwood--the perfect spot to relax.
3. FARMERS' MARKETS
The Toledo area has a plethora of Farmers’ Markets, including downtown Toledo, downtown Perrysburg, and downtown Sylvania.
Mary Wyar, Yogaja studio photographer/social media guru, declares that some of her favorite outdoor activities include “The farmers’ market on Saturdays--when I have them off--and then bumming around downtown eating goodies at Middlegrounds Park.”
Michelle Ostermyer equally loves them “because buying local is the way to live.”
4. PROMENADE PARK PROMEDICA CONCERT SERIES
For those of you reading this over 30, you’ll remember the days of Party in the Park--outdoor concerts, festival food, and plenty of cheer, all in the heart of downtown Toledo and facing the Maumee River. Thanks to Promedica, Party in the Park is back--with a new name. The Promedica Concert Series covers all the musical bases, from Classical to Jazz to 90s pop.
Concerts begin the first weekend in June and continue through the end of September.
5. OLD WEST END FESTIVAL
June 1-3, 2018
The Old West End bursts into celebration the first weekend in June every year. Lawn parties, yard sales, and outdoor concerts spring up all throughout the neighborhood. Several historic OWE homes are open for house tours, and for the athletes, there is an OWE 5k Run/Walk.Closer to Toledo Museum of Art, food vendors are set up to sell fair food, and the Sunday parade draws young and old alike bright and early. Very few cars are seen during this time in the Old West End; almost everyone walks, rides a bike/scooter, or drives a golf cart. The OWE Festival is one you don't want to miss. Erin Marsh and her family attend every year without fail--rain or shine--because it's one of their favorite Toledo summer activities.
6. CROSBY FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS
June 22, 2018 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm (Preview Party)
June 23, 2018 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
June 24, 2018 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Crosby Festival of the Arts is a family-friendly and affordable fine art show in luxurious Toledo Botanical Garden. This is the only show of its size and caliber in Northwest Ohio, so attendance is always high.
7. TMA BLOCK PARTY
Saturday, July 7, 2018, 6:00 p.m. — 10:00 p.m.
Toledo Museum of Art organized a spectacular block party last year, and this year will undoubtedly be as wonderful. Performers from Birds Eye View Circus wowed the audience with their stunts and grace, the Bubble Sharks engaged kids of all ages with their shark costumes and larger-than-life bubbles, and a steady stream of musicians and other performers kept everyone dancing. Food, beverages, and sunshine were plentiful.
8. JAZZ IN THE GARDEN AT TOLEDO BOTANICAL GARDEN
July 12, 19, and 26 and August 2, 9, 16, 23, and 30, 2018
6:30 pm – 8:30 pm, Toledo Botanical Garden
Ticket Prices (pay at the gate) $10 general admission $5 Metroparks members
Under 12 are free
Food vendors are available, and guests can bring their own beverages--even the adult kind! Lisa Morlock, part of the aerial Yogaja herd, says Jazz in the Garden is one of her favorite summer events.