Summer Of Fun Planned At Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area

You can learn how to kayak this summer at Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area.

There's more -- much more -- to explore in Boston than the Freedom Trail this summer. Head into Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area and you'll discover activities for the whole family all summer long.

Officials with the Boston Harbor Island Alliance have released a schedule of free sporting activities this summer on the Boston Harbor Islands. You can take part in vintage baseball on the historic Harbor Islands, grab a seat for the exciting end-of-summer regatta, or simply relax and enjoy the beauty of the great outdoors.

Visitors will find that all island programs are accessible by a quick 15-minute ferry ride from downtown Boston.

Here's a look at some of the free programs being offered throughout the Boston Harbor Islands this summer.

Weekly Activities

* Wednesdays & Thursdays: Beginner Sea Kayaking at Grape and Spectacle islands. Discover the beauty and charm of the Boston Harbor Islands by sea kayak on a ranger-led paddling excursion. A 90-minute tour in a park kayak is a perfect way to experience the harbor and islands at an intimate and personal level, as well as a great way to see familiar areas from a new perspective. Grape Island kayak programs are scheduled in July and August, Wednesdays and Thursdays, see islands for times. First-come, first-served basis to those age 12 and up. Weather permitting.

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Check the park's newspaper for a list of ranger programs.

* Saturdays: Island Yoga with Om Warrior Visitors are encouraged to take part in a gentle beginner yoga session on beautiful and peaceful Spectacle Island overlooking the spectacular views of the Boston Harbor. Meet at Spectacle Island Visitor Center and bring a mat or towel. First-come, first-served. Spectacle Island noon and 1:15 p.m.

Special Events and Programs

Vintage Baseball Games – July 8th, August 19th and September 8th, 11:30 a.m. Step back in time into the 1860s on Georges Island and watch Civil War-era baseball games played at historic Fort Warren with original rules and uniforms.

* Let’s Move Outside! Family Fitness Day – Saturday, August 18th 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. As a part of “Let’s Move Outside!” Junior Ranger, Spectacle Island will host a full day of family fitness programs encouraging families to get moving outside, together. Activities will include running, swimming, kite flying, hiking, boot camp calisthenics, yoga, martial arts, and Zumba.

* Kite Flying Festival – Saturday, August 4th 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Enjoy a day out on Spectacle Island and partake in activities including kite flying, frisbee, volleyball and cricket. Sponsored by the American Indian Foundation. Pre-registration is required.

* Boston Harbor Islands Regatta – Saturday, September 29th 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Boston Harbor Island Alliance is excited to be a part of the 8th Annual Boston Harbor Islands Regatta, a fundraising event for the Boston Harbor Island Alliance. Join the crowd at Boston Harbor to watch sailors participate in this pursuit race around the Boston Harbor Islands!

To view the entire 2012 summer schedule, as well as a ferry schedule visit, the alliance's website. The public park ferries to the Boston Harbor Islands operate seven days a week, and depart hourly from Boston’s Long Wharf North. To purchase ferry tickets, please visit the Boston Harbor Islands Pavilion on the Rose F. Kennedy Greenway (across from the Long Wharf Marriott).

For more information about the Boston Harbor Islands national park area, visit this site. To find up-to-the-minute information on events and other updates, become a Facebook fan of Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area.