We typically associate Father's Day with gift-giving—it's something we can't help since our teachers always conditioned us to craft cards for our dads. But as we've gotten older, we've realized that what a father wants most is to spend time with his family—which is where fun ideas for Father's Day come in. As you probably know, the big day is this Sunday, and whether you've already purchased a gift or not, there are fun activities you can do to honor the dads in your life.
Since this is no ordinary day, it's worth putting a little extra thought into what you'll do together, whether it's your grandfather, father, stepfather, husband, or even father-in-law you're celebrating. And since you may be spending time alone, with the kids, or the rest of your extended family, we've provided a bevy of options for you to choose from. Ranging from just a little planning to a lot, we've covered the top 16 ideas for Father's Day to make your Sunday, June 17, a day to remember. Keep reading—and then take your pick.
Make him breakfast in bed. You can help the little ones cook dad breakfast and bring it to him in bed. Pancakes like this banana chai version never disappoint (make extra for the rest of you to eat, too). Although, let's be honest, your dad might like breakfast in bed as well.
Host a barbecue. When everyone wants to celebrate together, it can be hard to make reservations for 10. Thankfully, the weather is nice, and nothing brings the family together more than some food fresh from the grill and maybe even s'mores from a fire pit in the backyard.
Watch home videos. There's nothing quite like seeing yourself (and your siblings) interact with you dad when you were younger. It's a real bonding moment seeing how far you've come over the years. We bet he might even shed a tear (or two).
Tackle a project together. Whether it's gardening, cleaning out the garage, or something else, asking him what he wants to do together (and cross off his list) will be better than getting any gift. Plus, you'll have plenty of time to bond together while performing the task at hand.
Attend beer school. Even though this is not just a one-day thing, going to beer school with your dad will teach him how to make his own brew (almost every man's dream). Check out the list here to see which schools and classes may be available in your area.
Go for a "float." Float therapy involves lying on your back in a low-gravity flotation tank to ease pain and worries. Although this is a solitary activity, you can book sessions at the same time to find your inner zen.
Shoot some pool. It's not just about the activity, but about hanging out and some friendly (aka family) competition. How long has it been since you played a game with your father?
Go for a scenic bike ride. Whether you're in New York and want to bike the Brooklyn Bridge or you're in the burbs and have a relaxing trail near you, it's all about taking in some views side by side.
Take a paddleboarding lesson. This is one of those sports that requires patience to learn—it's not as easy as it looks. Book a lesson with Dad because you'll be sure to bond over the difficulty in staying upright. Plus, he can always use another excuse to spend time with you.
Root your team on at a ball game. Dress in your team's attire and go watch a baseball game with Dad. You can treat him to a hot dog lunch and some popcorn (or really, whatever he wants since it's his day).
Plan a family scavenger hunt. Designate one family member to plan the hunt and another to get the prizes. Then the whole crew including the little ones can join in on the fun looking for clues. At the end of the day, everyone's a winner. Finish with an ice cream party for dessert.
Try out a new restaurant. You definitely have your favorite haunts—barbecue, burgers, you name it. Cross off a place on your bucket list that you've been meaning to try together. PS: Don't forget to take a picture to document your day.
Visit a creamery. Assuming both you (and your dad) aren't lactose intolerant, it's fun to drive out to a creamery to have a fresh sundae or cone together and catch up on the ride. And hey, it's not a bad idea to eat something to cool down in this heat.
Head to a record store. Remember how the two of you used to jam out together and sing the words to all of your favorite songs? Making a trip to a record store will help you listen to all the oldies, but you can also explore new tracks together. Let him pick out a few new records to take home.
Test drive (or rent) a fancy car. Is dad a car fanatic? Go with him to test drive a fancy car—or if you feel weird about that, you can actually splurge and rent him one for the day. Hey, he's worth it, right?
Have a virtual movie night. If you can't make it to be near your dad this year, there's no reason you still can't catch a flick together. Use Gaze to watch any YouTube or downloaded movie together. It has audio functions so you can discuss the plotline. (Pssst: If you both make some popcorn, it will be almost as if you're with one another).
Now that you have some fun ideas for Father's Day, it's time to get planning to make sure you celebrate dad the right way.