9 ways to celebrate father’s day and make it a family affair

A boy with his dad.
Photo by Olesia Bilkei/Shutterstock

Father’s day is coming up, which means it’s time to start thinking about special ways to show the fathers in your life that you appreciate them. We’ve noticed that a sure-fire way to make dads happy is to spend some time with them. Many fathers we know are social creatures who want to spend a day surrounded by the people they love. After all, family holidays are about just that: family. So celebrate father’s day as a family with one of these group activities for all the fatherly figures in your life.

Have a multigenerational get-together

People having a BBQ.

Photo by VectorLifestylepic/Shutterstock

Many of us have more than one father in our lives. There are our fathers, our grandfathers, our step-fathers and fathers-in-law. So why not throw a big party for all the fathers that make your life special? We recommend having a barbecue or a picnic. Let the fathers in the party show off their grilling skills, then toss a frisbee, play some baseball, and then relax under a tree or in a hammock with some a slice of watermelon. A group father’s day will definitely be an event to remember—not to mention an excellent photo op.

Have a movie marathon

Movie popcorn and TV.

Photo by nioloxs/Shutterstock

A lot of dads are the easygoing ones in the family, which means that when it’s movie night, they don’t often get to choose the film. So if the father in your family is a movie fan, why not let him choose three or four movies he loves and have the whole family gather to watch them? Make popcorn, turn down the lights, and settle in for a few classic dad movies. This is a great, low-stress activity to show dad that he and his tastes are appreciated.

Head to an amusement park

A ferris wheel at an amusement park.

Photo by Jannarong/Shutterstock

Mini golf. Go-karting. Batting cages. Mini donuts. Need we say more? Games at the fair are a fun way of incorporating a little friendly competition into father’s day (without things getting too intense). There are also lots of activities for the various members of the family at an amusement park. Thrillseekers can check out the roller coasters, sports enthusiasts can compare batting averages, and everyone else can just chow down on cotton candy.

Take in a ball game

A baseball game.

Photo by Daniel Padavona/Shutterstock

Is there a more father-friendly activity than going to the ball game? We can’t think of one. Even if you don’t live in a city where major league games take place, there are lots of smaller leagues in all kinds of cities (with much cheaper tickets, we might add). Don’t forget to buy a big foam finger.

Go bowling

A bowling ball and bowling shoes.

Photo by Dmytro Zinkevych/Shutterstock

Bowling is an activity beloved by people of all ages. For newbies, there’s five-pin bowling. For the pros, there’s 10-pin. For the novelty factor, there’s glow-in-the-dark bowling. For kids, there are bowling bumpers. And for everyone, there’s food, drinks, and the delightful soundtrack of pins being blasted out of the way by a bowling ball with a perfect spin.

Go for a bike ride

A family cycling in the summer.

Photo by varuna/Shutterstock

Father’s day falls right in the middle of the most lovely part of summer. It’s sunny and warm, but not exhaustingly hot. Plants are still growing, and people are excited about the weather. It’s the perfect time for a little physical activity and sightseeing—and bike rides let you do both. Head to a park or a bike path running through a natural space, or pack up the bikes and drive out of the city for some mountain biking. It’s a fun and healthy way to celebrate dad’s day.

Cook something together

A family cooking dinner together.

Photo by Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock

Cooking is stressful when it’s done under pressure, but when you put aside a few hours to create the perfect meal, it’s one of the most soothing activities there is. If your family has culinary inclinations, we recommend going out together to buy the perfect ingredients, and then luxuriating in creating the most amazing meal of the year. A lot of fathers we know are pretty handy in the kitchen, so let dad take charge and at dinner time, you can all enjoy the rewards.

Play paintball

Paintball splatter.

Photo by NadineVeresk/Shutterstock

If your family is into something a little more extreme than the everyday bowling or golfing, perhaps paintball would be more up your alley. This team battle game will get everyone’s adrenaline pumping and create stories you’ll tell for many father’s days to come. Sometimes the best way to show your love and appreciation for dad is to get him in your crosshairs.

Get building

A blue bird house.

Photo by dariagarnik/Shutterstock

If your family’s father figures like to spend their time hunkered down in the garage putting pieces together, perhaps this father’s day should be an opportunity to head into the garage with them. One way to incorporate the whole family is to build something like a birdhouse. The grown-ups can do all the heavy duty work, while kids can decorate the finished product. Whatever you build, you can all share the feeling of satisfaction that comes from a job well done.

Also on RNR: