You know its summer when local berries hit the supermarkets, farmer’s market and berry picking farms have opened. Berry picking is always on our summer bucket list. Luckily, here in BC we have a variety of berries available right out our back door throughout the summer months. Berry picking is a great family activity, especially if you plan ahead. Let’s take a look at 5 tips for berry picking with kids.
Get to the patch early in the morning:
If your kids are like mine they are up early. I always find family activities are successful after a good night sleep and a full belly. The summers get pretty hot and picking berries in the mid afternoon heat is no fun for anyone. Aim to get to the berry patches when they open before the crowds set in.
Pack snacks and water:
Like any other family outing I pack snacks. There is nothing working with sampling a few berries here and there but let’s support the local farmers and encourage kids to sample a couple of berries instead of a bucket. I like to pack portable snacks like fresh fruit, vegetables, granola bars and nuts. Don’t forget to keep the kids well hydrated with plenty of water.
Lather the kids with sunscreen. We don’t want anyone to look like a red berry at the end of the day.
Teach them the basics:
Taking kids to pick their own berries is a great way for them to understand where their food comes from. It’s also a great opportunity to talk about the benefits of eating and supporting locally grown food. It’s also a great opportunity to teach kids how to pick ripe, fresh berries.
Quit when they are done:
You want your kids to enjoy berry picking. Unfortunately, things don’t go as planned when you have young kids. There is no point in fighting with the kids, know their limits and quit when everyone is still happy. My youngest daughter was finished picking berries after 30 minutes and we walked away with two buckets of fresh, juicy berries and happy kids. If you didn’t get to pick all the berries you were hoping for you can always purchase more when leaving the berry picking farm.
Last but not least have fun! Kids attention spans fade quickly. What seems like a family fun activities may soon seem like a chore. Make it fun by playing games. Encourage them to find the biggest strawberry or the weirdest shape berry.