it in the face of the nearest frog you see. This will cause the amphibian to freeze, giving your kids time to sneak up and grab it. You can let the frogs go, or—with the right permits—bring them home for a gourmet meal.
Swim in a pond. Troll for mini-sharks. When the moon is bright and the wind is calm, take your kids to a pond and let them twitch a topwater plug across its surface. In no time, the still water will erupt in a frenzy of Jaws-like splashing as hungry largemouth bass lunge up to inhale your kids’ lures. With that kind of action, Shark Week pales in comparison.
Hit the beach. Missouri may not have oceanfront real estate, but it does have hundreds of miles of sandy beaches. Don’t believe it? Take your kids on a hike along the banks of one of our big rivers. There you’ll find plenty of sandbars, perfect for building sand castles or having a picnic.
Make a wish. Though shooting stars can be seen at any time of the year, let your kids stay up late on the night of August 12–13, when the Perseid meteor shower peaks and up to 80 shooting stars can be seen every hour.
Play hide-and-seek. Capture the flag. When your kids have friends over, play capture-the-flag. All you need are two teams, two flags (bandanas work well), and a good-size yard, park or field in which to play. For a run-down of the rules, visit the link listed below.
Hunt for buried treasure. There are literally hundreds of geocaches—containers filled with trinkets—hidden across the state. Visit the link listed below to get coordinates to one, program these into a GPS device, and turn your kids loose on a high tech treasure hunt. If you want to go old school, draw up your own treasure map and let your kids use it instead of the GPS.
Race woolly bears. In September, fuzzy black-and-brown woolly bear caterpillars show up in full force. Let your kids round up a few, then draw a circle in the dirt about the size of a hula hoop. Place the captive caterpillars in the center, and make bets on whose woolly bear will make it outside the circle first.
Tag butterflies. Monarch butterflies flutter through Missouri every September on their way to wintering grounds in Mexico. Your kids can help scientists monitor monarch populations by catching migrating butterflies and