All Things Financial Planning Blog

Ways to Play this Summer!

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Ways to Play This SummerCan’t afford $3K for an Italian getaway this summer? Not to worry – summer comes in many forms. Let’s take a look at what we can do for a very reasonable amount of money. As always, it pays to do the math to see if you are really saving money.

Sailing away – how many weekends a summer could you and your family commit to getting out to go boating? If you don’t own a boat, you can join a boat club or rent one on many lakes for the day. Although all boating is relatively expensive, boats are quickly depreciating assets so if you fund only those outings you can actually get to, say 4 times a summer, you can save a lot of money. Search the internet for boat clubs in any state where you’d like to boat.

Snorkeling – just about the cheapest way to see the undersea world, rent some fins, a mask, snorkel, and vest and get out there! Go to and find a group going out to a beach near you.

Sand & Sea – go to and plug in the summer destination of your dreams and start packing! Check the moon cycles and if you’re going to be on a beach at full moon, look for others there who celebrate these special evenings.

Wine festivals – want to cool down with some fine wine, fast cars, and beautiful surroundings? Head to the Finger Lakes Wine Festival this July and take in a car race at Watkins Glen while you’re there.

Concerts – here in Northern Virginia, we’re fortunate to have Wolftrap’s Filene Center and one of our favorite evening’s there includes the Louisiana Swamp Romp featuring Marcia Ball, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and more. We have our summer picnic spread on the lawn for this foot stompin’ romp complete with wine, food, and friends. What’s playing in your town?

Find a drive-in movie theater to enjoy on a warm summer evening. Rent a cool car for the evening to see it and then drive under the stars. If you can’t figure out how to make summer memories at a drive-in, all I can say is you’ve lost the kid in you.

Get lost – hit the trails and take only water, a camera, and a friend. Get in deep enough to hear some silence. Maybe you’ll get really lucky and hit an undiscovered stream to wade in. 

Same thing by car – don’t have a plan, stop in a town unknown to you, try some different food, and take in an unexpected tour along the way.

Summer can feel way too short – so whether you have small funds or time is tight, get out there!

bonnieHughesBonnie Hughes, CFP®
American Capital Planning, LLC
Reston, VA / Miami, FL

Author: Bonnie Hughes, CFP®

Bonnie A. Hughes, CFP®, has been a Certified Financial Planner for families and individuals since 1992. In addition to her client work, Bonnie enjoys serving her community, for example, from 2004-2006, she served as the Retirement Planning Speaker for Georgia’s Secretary of State, Cathy Cox’s Investor Education Series, “Money Counts” with letters of commendation. She is a principal at American Capital Planning, LLC,

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