Get some awesome summer senior activities. Including special arts and crafts, games, recipes, parties, plus making (and eating) foods and snacks!

Great for either outdoors or in, if it’s hot. These ideas can be added to anything you might be doing throughout the summer.

And if you want activities for the specific summer months, the links are listed further below.

Summer Month links

June Senior Activities
July Senior Activities
August Senior Activities

And why not create your own special Day or Month commemoration and start your own tradition, especially meaningful to your group or campus.

General Summer Senior Activities

Themes — There are many themes you can use all season long for your summer senior activities – like parties, crafts, special meals, decorating, etc. Some that come to mind are:  Butterflies and dragon flies, sunflowers, roses and other flowers, baseball, bees and honey, lady bugs, watermelon, sea shells, and fish of all kinds. Later on in the summer you can include apples and other fruit of your choice.

Be sure to take a look at our Easy Craft Ideas page, our “craft central,” to see what you can adapt for summer.

We also have a nice variety of outdoor elderly activities to choose from to take advantage of the nice weather!


Gardens

By now whatever gardens you’ve planted are blooming and ready to enjoy. Time to do a little harvesting of herbs and veggies, if you planted any.

You may have taken a look at our Spring Senior Activities page where we discussed planning for a butterfly garden, attracting hummingbirds, and attracting song birds. Some of these steps might still be taken in June. So have a read and see if any of these will enhance what you already have. And give you ideas too for planning for next year.

Or have a field trip where you can pick some wildflowers to bring back and put in containers for the home or tables.

Field Trips

Summer senior activities can include some refreshing field trips, if your group is able. There are many possibilities…

Japanese Garden

A wonderful outing is visiting a Japanese garden, if you have one in the area. They are very serene and conducive to meditation and pondering.

Otherwise, would you and your group be interested in learning to set up a small, basic one? Research can be done online, or have an expert come in to help you learn and set it up. Some steps can be taken now, and the rest next spring. Features often include a small water feature, and pebble arrangements, as well as a small bridge.

Volunteers may also be willing to come in and help. This is a lovely idea for fund raising as well, and is something that can be enjoyed throughout the years after making it.

Metal Detecting

This is one of my favorites, and you’d have to see if it’s right for your group. If you prefer, one metal detector can be shared among a few people, taking turns. And it can be easily done by those in wheelchairs too.

We had an expert write a special page all about it and how fun it is for seniors especially. There are many kinds of detectors, some at quite a reasonable price too.

It’s a pastime that is exciting – you never know what you will find! Do it on your own grounds, or go to a park or beach. Especially after a holiday! See the interesting details at Treasure Hunting With Metal Detectors.

Festivals

What do you have going on in your community? Or somewhat close to you? Lots of interesting learning can be done along with some of them. Some areas special in a specific crop or food item that they celebrate. Others are cultural or historical.

More Field Trip Ideas

*  Native American celebrations
*  Heritage celebrations (i.e., Irish, Italian, German, Scandinavian, etc.)
*  Historical re-enactment celebrations or state areas
*  Carnival or park with an old-fashioned carousel or safe ferris wheel
*  Visitor-friendly farms (some give hay rides)
*  Antiquing and flea markets
*  Baseball games
*  Have a tailgate party at at sports event
*  Zoos, arboretums and conservatories
*  Renaissance fairs (as well as other local fairs)
*  Visit the fire station and learn about their work and the most modern vehicles, (very popular here)

*  Paddle boat or pontoon boat outing, any boat trip involving historical areas
*  Specialty shows, such as antique cars, and air shows
*  Music festivals and outdoor concerts
*  Theater in the parks (Shakespeare is popular at this time)
*  Art fairs
*  Watch an evening meteor shower, or Northern Lights
*  Berry picking, for those who are able

Parties and Food

Parties and food are a given to work into your summer senior activities. You probably already do picnics, barbeques, and so forth. We do have a specialty page all about party theme ideas as food for thought.

Luau

(We actually suggest these in winter too). And they are excellent to do indoors in summer when it’s raining). One of our readers submitted some great suggestions of to do – see Luau Ideas.

There is a variety of food and beverages to consider. Have you ever been to Hawaii or the South Pacific? Members may be interested in helping to plan this one! A bit of costuming can be encouraged, from floral shirts, to leis, to flowers in the hair, and sandals.

Gone Fishing Party

Several different summer senior activities can be involved in this one!

You have planning the party, making or getting unique decorations (that can be used many times), making certain easy food items (we provide recipes too), maybe even having a field trip to do some fishing, and of course having the party! Indoors or out, depending on how the weather turns out. We have lots of ideas at our fish party activities page.

Haystacks

You may be familiar with the standard brown chocolate and coconut haystacks. (Mine are totally no-bake — I don’t toast the coconut, but include it plain). But why not add a little color to them.

All you need is a bag of white chocolate chips, food coloring, spoons, shredded coconut, and perhaps sprinkles and a candy on top. And a platter with wax paper. There are many ways you could tint and decorate them for different occasions.

Melt about a cup of the chips in the microwave. Heat them for 30 seconds, remove and stir. Then heat for 15 seconds, remove and stir. Do this until only a few lumps remain. Let them melt naturally during the last stir (or you may over-cook). Add a drop of food coloring.

Add in coconut until you get a nice, thick consistency. Scoop spoonfuls onto a plate with wax paper. Add sprinkles and a candy on top while still soft. As they start to set, you  can mold them with spoons (or CLEAN fingers) into the shapes that you want.

See how we also made these as summer senior activities for the 4th of July, decorated in red, white, and blue. See our 4th of July Crafts page.

Home-Made Ice Cream

Making ice cream can include two ideas for your summer senior activities — the actual making, and then eating it at a special event or meal.

This was one of my Dad’s favorite activities, even with fading eye sight. I would help him, of course. But he used to make it by himself into his 90s when he still lived in his home. It’s that easy.

On our page I include some of Dad’s own recipes. Many can be made with honey, so they’re super natural. And honey, too, is a summer product. So see what to do at how to make ice cream – the easy way.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

I love to make these so much that I mention them on lots of my pages. I’ve made hundreds, and part of the fun is decorating them. And there are several that would be great for using in summer senior activities. 

Visit our page on how to make chocolate covered strawberries, and see techniques and tips from my experiences. And the different colors you can make too. Plus how to decorate them, from the easy basics for anyone, to such things as flowers and little creatures. They’re so versatile. You can think of things to make for just about any season or holiday!

Fruit Salad Characters

Lady bugs are an easy theme for summer senior activities, and so are salads. Why not combine the two and create a salad character.

They’ll bring a bit of whimsy to your events, parties, and special meals throughout the season.

And we have more ideas too – pear bunnies, leaping banana fish, even a string cheese octopus. See them and more about creative and simple fruit salad characters.

Crafts

Butterflies

Butterflies are always popular themes for summer senior activities, and one of our readers submitted a wonderful craft on our Share page. Take a look and see what you would like to use them for when finished. Go to Large Silk Butterflies. And do feel free to use the template provided at the top of the page for other projects!

Sunflowers

Sunflowers are one of the easiest flowers to draw or paint. Just a large circle for the middle, and many, many petals radiating out from it. Some sunflowers have 2 layers of petals as well. A favorite activity is using them in a painting, which can be done outdoors in the nice weather.

Materials you need are a few colors of acrylics or watercolors, paper or a canvas board to paint on, a plastic picnic type plate for a palette, a water container and rag, and a few brushes.

I am providing a simple photo of sunflowers below that you can use as an inspiration. You’d paint on the blue sky first as a background. Then just tall stems, flower center, lots of petals, and a few small leaves. Add a butterfly if you’d like! And further below are 2 templates you can use.

Here are a couple sunflower templates for your summer senior activities. One is basic, and you could also eliminate large circle in the middle if you just want a silhouette. The other has 2 layers of petals.

And of course sine I’ve recently been in a frenzy of making all manner of chocolate covered strawberries, I just had to make a sunflower.

Dip the berry in chocolate according to our instructions at How To Make Chocolate Covered Strawberries (the easy way). When the dark chocolate has hardened, make melt white chips and add a couple drops of yellow food coloring. Top it with a candy.

Make a sunflower shape (I also made another flower shape for the center) with the template above. Push a kabob skewer through the flower shapes and up into the strawberry.

Then just get a vase or mug, fill it with candies or other treats (perhaps sunflower seeds!) and it’s ready. These are colorful for desserts, gifts, prizes, etc.


Trash to Treasure

You may have seen programs like this on TV. Well why not do something yourself? Summer senior activities can combine both an outing and then a craft or party afterwards. In this case, a craft.

Your members can visit a flea market or several garage sales, and choose an item or two to convert. Then take them back to the activities area. Discuss what the items will become and what skills and materials you will need to accomplish this. Then the next session or two will be about making them. Lastly, they can be displayed or just taken home and used. Also great for gifts.

Shell Crafts

Shells of all kinds make wonderful themes for your summer senior activities. The one shown here was also submitted to our Share forum by a reader. As you can see, they are simple flowers. The middles may be painted, or not. Whatever you prefer.

The shell flowers could also be glued onto an art board with a painted background, collage style. Stems can be made of pipe cleaners or wire; or if a collage, use paint, yarn too. 

Other shell crafts involve getting a larger sized flat shell, spreading in a bit of glue and then gluing a layer of sand (as in a beach), and then adding a couple of pearl beads and a small flameless tea light.

You may also find free coloring pages online with sea and shell motifs. And you can also use them, or segments of them, to transfer and incorporated into a painting (fun to to outdoors).

Easy Sea Themed Centerpiece

Make some centerpieces for your summer senior activities! This one couldn’t be easier.

All you need — is a tall vase (I like narrow), some blue glass stones (I got mine at the dollar store), small shells, raffia, a kabob skewer, and craft glue (glue gun works great).

First, glue 2 to 3 stones onto the top of the skewer, about an inch or two down from the point. Set aside to dry.

Next, simply fill the vase with a few blue stones. Then insert the skewer, and fill the vase around it with some more stones. (You could also use more shells as filler instead).

Top the point of the skewer with a small shell. Tuck a few strands of long raffia into the stones in the vase. Raffia is reminiscent of sea grass. Lastly, place a few stones in a design around the base of the vase, along with a shell or two. We have more centerpiece ideas on our affordable centerpiece page, including for summer.

Kindle Activities Book

Get tons more new ideas for summer senior activities in our Kindle book, plus lots collected from all over our site so you don’t have to hunt all over. (If you don’t have a device, just download it to your computer).

You’ll have ideas for all seasons and events at your fingertips. Get details at our link at:  

Our Craft Book

Easy Crafts and Gifts – You don’t need to hunt all over our web site. We have lots of NEW crafts, and some of our favorites from here – over 120 projects. Plus, a FREE booklet of templates to use, including in summer senior activities.

Also see:
Fun Elderly Activities — Especially for those who may need modifications or more help. You will several more that can be used as summer senior activities.

To Senior Activities – By the Month

Find some new ideas for your July senior activities. Find crafts to games and outdoor activities, to summer food projects and parties.

You’ll discover some here that go beyond the ordinary, and others that will please those with special interests. There’s sure to be something for everyone.

All of our American readers will know about the 4th of July (see our page on 4th of July crafts ( where you can also find out how to make the foody apple bowl project like the one above). And our Canadian readers will of course know about Canada Day. So we won’t go into these holidays on our summer senior activities page in great length.

But July is a month for many more excuses to have parties and festivities. Lots of July commemorations and special dates happen to involve food! Take a look at some our favorite activity themes…

Our July Senior Activities

Commemorations for July

National Hot Dog Month — Yes, this is an actual Day, created by the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council. Hot dogs can range from traditional, to kosher, to turkey dogs, and even vegan. Bratwurst may do as well. So everyone can get involved. Showcase those hot dogs with all the usual condiments, pickles, sauerkraut, chili and cheese too. Try something new on your hot dog! Since this is a traditional ball park food, why not plan a festivity along with watching a game. Music and dancing are other popular July senior activities to include.

National Ice Cream Month –  An ice cream social is the perfect party for this Month. (And you can always combine it with your hot dog fest). Activities could include how to make ice cream (the easy way) and see what flavors you can come up with. This page includes some of Dad’s favorite original recipes. We like to make our ice cream with honey or maple syrup. (There are more ice cream themes in the calendar dates section).

National Picnic Month – One of the favorite summer pastimes. You can also combine this with National Hot Dog Month celebrations. Either have an outing to a park or simply on your own grounds. This is the perfect time to add in some other outdoor games and activities. We have lots of suggestions on our outdoor elderly activities page and elderly games. Picnics of any kind are quintessential July senior activities.

National Blueberry Month – July summer activities can include berry picking! If your group is not able, try to visit a Farmer’s Market or fruit stand and buy them fresh. There’s always the grocery store. At least eat them this month! Your group may enjoy making and sharing blueberry treats, potluck style. Maybe sharing recipes if they’re not able to bake. Or choose a couple as a foody cooking/craft activity. There are very simple ways of using fruit in treats.

National Recreation Month – What are your group’s favorite recreation activities? If you ask, you may find out something new and interesting. (And even if some are not able to do them anymore, it’s fun to share and reminisce with stories). Take a few of those ideas and turn them into events throughout the month for your July senior activities.

Dates for July

July 1 – International Joke Day.  Pull out the joke books for your July senior activities! Or leave a printed out joke or two at every table during one of your meals.  Or at everyone’s place setting. Members can read them to each other and have a good laugh. Plus, be prompted to tell a few of their own. You can also make a game of this, having participants tell jokes, then a vote for the top 3. Winners would get a prize. Or everyone who tells a joke gets a prize. It’s always a good thing to add a little humor to July senior activities.

July 2 – First Zeppelin Flew, in 1900. A zeppelin is also known as a rigid airship, and was created by Count Ferdinand Graf Von Zeppelin. The first test flight (which was not totally successful) was on this day in Germany. Later it was used in World War I especially, and commercial endeavors. After one caught on fire, killing all the passengers in 1936, they lost popularity. For those interested, its history and they way it was would make a fascinating presentation. You may even have members in your group who rode in a zeppelin!

July 3 – National Chocolate Wafer Day.  This one is easy. Just serve chocolate wafers for dessert (with a short announcement) or during a snack. Choose from chocolate mint wafers, waffle style wafers with cream filling, rolled Pirouline, etc. Wafers are just anything thin. And they can be included in cakes, cupcakes, and with ice cream too. But remember. They have to be chocolate.

July 4 – 4th of July (American Independence Day). Mostly everyone has included this day in their July senior activities. If you’re looking for some crafts (along with easy treats to make in red, white and blue) see our page on 4th of July Crafts.

July 4 – National Barbecue Day.  Since this is also National Hot Dog and National Picnic Month, the July senior activities can simply combine a couple of these in the same celebration. And think of the things you can barbeque: hot dogs and burgers of course, ribs, poultry, fish, corn on the cob, and a variety of veggies. It’s the sauce that makes it too!

July 5 – Birthday of P.T. Barnum (1910). Famous for his Barnum & Bailey Circus, “The Greatest Show On Earth,” which was later sold to the Ringling Brothers; and also the creator of the first aquarium. This is a chance to celebrate the world of the circus. There are many movies of course. But also consider having someone come in who had been or is an interesting  performer, to give a presentation. Perhaps someone who had even been in the circus in any capacity for awhile. They’ll be full of stories!

July 5 – Graham Cracker Day. A good time to use a graham cracker crust, either pie or tart size. We have a great recipe on our Fresh Strawberry Desserts page for tarts. And you can use any berries with the same method. Or you could use graham crackers in S’mores.  If you want some new and unique, check out our page on how to make s’mores, the gourmet way. As I mentioned, July senior activities are full of food!

July 6 – National Fried Chicken Day. Sure, it may not be the very best for the arteries. But maybe just a little bit once in awhile…?

July 6 – National Strawberry Sundae Day. Yep, ice cream again. And very delicious, made with either chocolate or strawberry topping. On any kind of ice cream, especially strawberry.  And of course, add a few fresh berries in with it.

July 7 – Chocolate Day.  One of my favorites for July senior activities, and any time. And it pairs nicely with wine or any sparkling drink – see our page for an easy wine and chocolates party). We also have some very interesting things to make, even foody “crafts” on our food activities page.

And if you want a special food project, check out our page on dipping chocolate and all the yummy items you can dip (and ideas to decorate them.

Chocolate is very easy to use as a theme for many July senior activities and parties. To plan your food, consider chicken chocolate sauce (mole), chocolate desserts of all kinds, coffee with a squirt of chocolate in it (which I always order when eating out), chocolate shakes, chocolate sodas (I still make them: ice cream, chocolate syrup, and sparkling water), chocolate fondue, and even a chocolate fountain. 

July 8 – Video Games Day. There are many simple and enjoyable video games available for seniors. Some of them are ones that kids would enjoy too, and add a little video expertise to your July senior activities. This would be an excellent day to spend with grandkids (and perhaps learn a few gaming lessons), or to invite a scout troop in.

July 10 – Pina Colada Day. (The national drink of Puerto Rico). July senior activities always seem a little more lively with a special beverage involved. The phrase actually  means “strained pineapple,” and that’s exactly what is in these drinks. There are also non-alcoholic versions available. Recipes call for about 2 oz. of pineapple juice, 2 oz. of Cream of Coconut, a splash of rum, and crushed ice. Blend until smooth. Add a wedge of pineapple to the side of the glass. And a little umbrella if you’d like. There are lots of recipes, all pretty similar, and you’ll find them online. If you want to leave out the rum, just enjoy a refreshing pineapple-coconut blended beverage.

July 11 – National Blueberry Muffin Day. A perfect addition to your breakfast or snack. This could be a food activity for individuals or groups as well. Then serve within your group, or save for a later larger group event.

July 12 – Birthday of author Henry David Thoreau (1817). For anyone interested in literature…This author and poet was famous for “Walden” and was a great environmentalist and nature lover. So environment and nature themes can additionally be added into your July senior activities, in his honor. Readings from his book and discussion about the simple life in nature, his philosophy, etc. can also be included.

July 12 – National Pecan Pie Day. I usually don’t think of July as a pecan pie month, but in those states that grow pecans, I’m sure this is the case. And it’s fun for anyone to celebrate. If you want a fantastic recipe, I shared my mom’s famous all-natural one at Amazing Easy Pecan Pie.

July 13 – International Puzzle Day. A perfect time to bring something outside for your July senior activities. Or if it’s a rainy day, do it inside. Puzzles are favorites for seniors. And this day can also involve crossword puzzles, sudoku, and other types of word puzzles as well.

July 15 – Artist Rembrandt’s birthday (1606). For art enthusiasts, this Dutch painter is one of the world’s most famous. This is a good opportunity for an art history event. Have a local professor or expert come in for a talk. And a little Dutch refreshment as well. Try herring and crackers, oysters, beer, gouda and edam cheese, rye bread, and fresh fruits. If you are able to locate genuine Dutch desserts or recipes, this is always a plus. You might also consider doing a digital slide show of his art. You can find many images online, then download them.

July 15 – National Ice Cream Day. Well, July senior activities do include National Ice Cream Month and the various days that go with it. So here’s one. My Dad had a great way of making home-made ice cream in a very simple way. In lots of flavors. Even with honey and maple syrup as sweeteners. If you want a foody activity, give it a try. See how at How To Make Ice Cream The Easy Way. Or at least serve ice cream in some form on this day! Tip: There’s another ice cream theme day on July 23! So take your pick.

July 16 – Apollo 11 takes off, 1969. This was a landmark space travel event from earth to the moon, manned by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. A few days later, Armstrong was then the first person to set foot on the moon (on July 20 – see below). He soon became famous for his statement, “One small step for [a] man, one giant leap for mankind.” This is an outstanding topic that lends itself to some interesting July senior activities. There have been a couple movies made about this event, “Apollo 11,” and “Moonshot.” You may be able to find them at your library. This would also be an excellent subject for a presentation, especially those interested in space travel and history.

July 18 – Nelson Mandela’s Birthday (1918). There are a variety of documentaries and movies about the life of this beloved South African patriot and social activist, including “Long Walk To Freedom,” “Invictus,” and “Nelson Mandela: Life and Times.” Some of these may be available at your public library.

July 20 – Chess Day.  No doubt your group may have people interested in chess. So why not host chess games. Tournament-based games are a great addition to your list of July senior activities. 

July 20 – The day astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin first landed on the moon, 1969. For those interested in space flight, have a day with a moon, astronaut, and/or outer space theme. And do you have access to a good telescope? They can enhance many July senior activities for evening. In party stores you can find moon-sun-star  themed paper goods to decorate with.
…..Crafts –  Make some decor of your own. Painting a few pillar candles with moons and stars is an easy way to add ambiance (they can also be the flameless kind). We also have a simple page on how to paint glass. Just follow the directions, buy use a moon and night sky theme. You’ll also see some star motifs on our page for 4th of July crafts.

July 21 – Birthday of author and Nobel Laureate Ernest Hemingway (1889). This popular author appealed to a very wide audience, so if you want to host an arts and cultural event, consider his works, such as “Old Man And The Sea,” and “Farewell To Arms.” Both are also movies.

July 22 – Summer Leisure Day. (Also National Hammock Day). I’m sure we could think of a zillion things to do on such a day. But this is the time to make a production out of just Leisure for your July senior activities. What does that mean to your group? Just ask what their favorite things would be to do to commemorate this. And be sure to have some unique treats on hand.

July 23 – Invention of Ice Cream (1904 by Charles Minches). (Yet another ice cream theme). At least this is the date ice cream went public. (Actually, some history scholars say Italian duchess Catherine de Medici created it and brought it to Europe in the 1500s). It was introduced at the World’s Fair in St. Louis in 1904. This can be the perfect day for your ice cream celebration. Perhaps the traditional ice cream social.

Try kinds made with honey or maple syrup. Again, you can see our page with Dad’s own all-natural recipes, on how to make ice cream the easy way. with And be sure to include all the fixings, including fresh fruit. Or maybe get an old-fashioned ice cream cart to visit.

Remember the old movie, “Meet Me in St. Louis” with Judy Garland about that 1904 World’s Fair? This would be a perfect activity to fit into the day.

July 24 – Amelia Earhart Day (born in 1897). For anyone interested in aviation, this day commemorates the legendary pioneer in aviation lost over the Pacific while attempting to fly around the world. There are several documentaries available about her, and probably in your local library. You may be familiar with the latest discoveries regarding this unsolved mystery found on a small Pacific island. This is an excellent reason to host an aviation-themed get-together, lecture, outing, film, etc.

July 25 – National Hot Fudge Sundae Day. Yes, another ice cream type day. Just in case you needed one.

July 25 – Merry-Go-Round Day. For those in your group who are able to do a field trip, you might consider visiting a nearby park that has a carousel, if available in your area. Otherwise, a carousel-related theme can be used in crafts.

July 26 – National Bagelfest. Since 1986. Think of the possibilities. Plain, rye, whole grain, cheese, onion, veggie, etc. And the toppings! Serve them for breakfast topped with eggs and bacon, lunch or dinner with just about anything on top. You might find bagels on sale at your local bagel shop or grocery store.

July 26 – National All or Nothing Day.  A day for July summer activities to celebrate (big or little, fun or serious) of making decisions, getting off the fence, making a commitment.  Doing something. Whatever that may be. It will make us feel better too. You can make light of this day, or have it be contemplative; whatever suits your group. Have participants write down what they want to jump in and do. And ideas of how they will do it. Depending on your group, you might share aloud. Especially if you are keeping it light. Otherwise, after they have their idea firmly in mind, they can rip it up. Later all the scraps of paper can be collected and recycled. This exercise will work for individuals, or for groups who are trying to decide on something.

July 27 – Bugs Bunny’s Birthday, 1940. The date this famous character first appeared in a Warner Bros. short cartoon called “A Wild Hare.” At that time his name was called Tex’s Rabbit, rather than Bugs Bunny. And he looked a bit different too. Before long he became known for his iconic phrase, “What’s up doc?” To celebrate, find some old cartoons at the library and show them for fun. Lots of nostalgia! You could also use a Bugs Bunny image in a craft project. You’ll be able to find one online.

July 29 – National Lasagna Day. Since it’s also Picnic Month, this would be an item to serve as well. And actually, one of our favorite versions is made with chicken instead of beef, from a well-known local Italian restaurant. Try it! It’s just a simple substitution. I also like to include spinach leaves layered in mine. Sometimes other vegetables, like zucchini. Even my kids love it. Normally it seems like July would be pretty hot to serve lasagna. But it’s The Day.

National Parents Day – The 4th Sunday of the month. This day was established by President Bill Clinton in 1994. Most of your group are likely to have been parents. Whether family can be present or not, make this a special day. For those who were not parents themselves, they certainly had them! This can be a commemorative day as well.

To: Summer Senior Activities

To: Senior Activities – By The Month

Thinking up creative planter ideas is a really easy and fun activity for all ages and ability levels. Either indoors or out, doing planters is an excellent addition to your senior activities – and also can be done as a group project.

They make wonderful gifts and give-aways too, ways to show off heirlooms and vintage items, or can be used in easy craft ideas including for party decoration and centerpieces.

There are easy enough options that are also suitable for elderly activities in which some may need more help.

Easy Planter Ideas

Painting a barrel with designs in acrylics (and then a few coats of outdoor grade sealant), makes an excellent project for the garden area. The empty barrel was first put on top of the project table and then painted. This is a perfect activity for using stencils of patterns too, unless you or your group are good at making your designs free-hand.

If you need some design ideas, see our free template patterns for flowers, leaves, animals, etc. Start out at the flower templates page.

Fun planters are an excellent way to recycle things you may already have around, or things you find at a thrift shop. Perhaps you have a great old hat, a fancy handbag, an antique vase, jar or pot. Even an old boot, shoe or colorful rain boot.

The leather of the boot we show has a pattern stenciled in acrylic paint of ivy and stars.

Using old-fashioned high-button shoes or fancy evening shoes is fabulous too. On this page we show some examples of unique planter ideas. Then see what you can come up with yourself.

Plants

Anything involving working with plants make very popular elderly activities. You can plant the seeds from scratch and watch them grow, putting them into their fancy planter when ready. Or go down to the local nursery and pick something up that already well on its way. Perhaps try something flowering, or even edible that can be used later in cooking and salads.

Another option is putting plant cuttings into a jar of water, which goes into your decorative planter item while they’re rooting. (And after they’ve been planted in soil later). I happen to love to root plant cuttings in jars of water.

In fact, I had some philodendron cuttings in the same jars of water for over four years! They just never died. They actually did far better in their water jars than when planted. Philodendrons are perfect for people who have no green thumb. They’re practically impossible to kill.

And if you really have no green thumb, these planter ideas also work well with artificial plants (and of course they’re much easier to take care of).

Preparing The Planter

We always first line a nice item with a plastic bag to protect it. Then inside of that we put a plastic container or pot with its plant. It’s best to have a pot with a hole, and with a drainage tray underneath it on the bottom, if possible. And depending on your container too.

Otherwise, line your container with a layer of gravel or pebbles first, to help drain excess water.

When you water the plants in fancy containers, just put in a little water at a time, let it absorb, then add a little more. This will help alleviate over-watering and possible spillage.

If you have a very tall “planter” and your pot with plant seems too short to work, you can first insert an upside down plastic container to use as a stand to elevate it. And at the top you can always add a little moss for a more finished look.

So if you or your loved one has a charming hat, shoe or vintage item or two that are just sitting around collecting dust, consider turning them into creative planter ideas.

They make wonderful keepsakes and gifts. I happen to think all kinds of hats (new or old) make fantastic planters. Just turn them upside down and put in your plant. Got an old top hat, military hat or an old costume? Some will make great party centerpieces.

Other very easy planter ideas involve using decorative tin cans, especially the vintage sort. You can often find them at garage sales and thrift stores. Or those in your group may already have something to use. These are very suitable for either indoors or out.

To enhance an outdoor area with something unique, just take a look around you and see what types of old items may be sitting around ready to be re-purposed…

Like an old bathtub (see below) or bicycle. The more character, the better. You can also paint the outside of an old tub with paints from the craft store suitable for porcelain, then a few coats of waterproof sealant to protect your designs.

If you like the traditional clay pot look, and are like to paint, see our page on painting clay pots – we do include some very easy examples.

Pumpkins and gourds are also very fun when in season (especially late summer of fall). Just hollow them out an insert a container with a plant, real flowers, artificial flowers, or holiday decor. They  make excellent centerpieces!

Also see:

Fancy Purse Planter — See one of our reader’s idea on how to turn a fancy old purse into a fabulous planter.
Outdoor Elderly Activities — Some of the outdoor activities can be done throughout the year. And also be moved indoors for more options. (Likewise, many of our indoor activities can be moved outside!)
Easy Make A Gift Basket Ideas — It’s easy to make a gift basket, and a very satisfying project. See many possibilities, whether making money or helping others.

to Elderly Activities

Welcome to our central Senior Activities page – by the month, for all 12 months.

PLUS, more for each season to do anytime throughout. Games, crafts, parties, recipes and food ideas, field trips, and general activities. You’ll be sure not to run out of ideas!

MonthsEvery month has its own special commemorations, as well as specific and unique calendar dates around which to plan something fun or meaningful. (And we give lots of suggestions of what you could do). Some may surprise you!  Lots of these can be done either individually, or in a group. And with kids too!

Some seniors are very active and live independently, participating in church groups and senior centers. Others reside in nursing homes and memory care. See how you can modify these activities for your needs. There’s something for everyone. Be sure to also see our page on elderly games too.

Seasons — In addition to the individual months, we also have a page for each season. The seasonal page gives more general things to do, that you can mix and match throughout its three months.

So just click on a main seasonal heading, or jump right into whatever month interests you.

Senior Activities – For Each Month

Winter ActivitiesGeneral activities for the winter season. (And the months of January, February are still included on this page, soon to each have their own pages. December does now have a page of its own. See below).

Most of us really look forward to the winter holiday season. But when that is over, then what? You may already have ideas that you have used in the past to fill up these months. But take a look at some of these other options.

December Senior Activities – There’s much more to do besides the winter holidays! (But we have something for those too). Get some unique ideas!

January Activities – Now that the bustle is over, it’s time to move on. Get some new ideas to relax, contemplate, get creative, and yes, party too!

February Activities – Winter is coming to a close, but not quite yet. So we have to find ways to keep interested, besides just Valentine’s Day.

Spring ActivitiesGeneral activities for spring. At last! Spring is coming! And there are lots of ways to get ready. Find ways to help with that spring fever, especially if you can’t get outdoors yet. Launch projects that will take you through spring, and even into summer.

March Senior Activities – Now is the time to start getting back into action. You can also start preparing for when it’s time to go outside. Are you getting antsy yet?

April Activities – Gardening, flowers and plants are definitely popular. But there is so much more to consider. Especially when it’s rainy out.

May Activities – Balmy weather is more consistent now, so we can take things outdoors more. And there are all kinds of new food options too.


Summer Activities
General activities for summer. It’s a perfect time to bring many activities outdoors, whether doing crafts, socializing, having special presentations, celebrations, or parties. You will see that the lazy days of summer may not be so lazy at all!

June Senior Activities – Our summer season starts with this month. And there are all kinds of things to do beyond picnics, grilling, and sitting outside. There are interesting themes, and we have crafts and games to go along with them.

July Senior Activities
– Summer is heating up, and so are activities. Of course there is the 4th of July, picnics and parades, but there are some great month commemorations too, that lend themselves to activities. And very intriguing calendar dates. And July has lots of foody themes.

August Activities – Summer is in full speed and then starting to come to an end (too bad)! Find out all kinds of unusual dates and commemorations, and our activity ideas to go with them.

Fall Activities General Activities for Fall. Seems like suddenly summer is over and the seasons definitely change. And there’s always that something in the air. So fall is a favorite, and some of our most popular activities happen now. They’re sure to perk up your autumn.

September Senior Activities – Several patriotic themes this month, and loads of variety in commemorations and calendar dates. You may not be able to do them all!

October Senior Activities – More than just Halloween, colored leaves and pumpkins! Halloween, though, is the second most popular holiday after Christmas. But lots of fun commemorations too (especially about foods), and a nice array of calendar dates for something different to do.

November Senior Activities – Besides Thanksgiving, what else? No matter what you’re interested in, you’re sure to find something novel in November to fit your fancy.

Do check back – we’re always adding new ideas to our pages!

Also see:

Top Senior Activity Ideas – This highly visited page has loads more of general activities that can be done at various times of the year, not just seasonally.

Fun Elderly Activities
– One of our most popular pages! Easier ideas for those who may need more help.

Field Trip Activities for Elderly & Seniors -  Something for every season and interest.

Home

Senior gardening activities can be done all year long! In any climate or season, there are fun things to do indoors that involve plants of all kinds and flowers. This page gives activities for outdoors, indoors, both including specialty ideas, and even related arts and crafts.

You may also get lots more inspiration for your senior gardening activities by visiting a few actual different types of gardens (including indoor kinds). We have lots of interesting ideas, including specialty gardens, on our page about field trip activities. Learn something unique, like how to attract butterflies, humming birds, even honey bees.

Indoor Senior Gardening Activities

Edible Windowsill Garden – Perfect senior gardening activities, even for those who weren’t into it! Grow them with a group, family or individually. Very popular gardens are those you can eat – there is a tangible goal! Edible window gardens usually consist of herbs. The easiest to grow are dill, basil, cilantro, lavender (which you can also use to make a lavender pillow), parsley, mint, thyme, oregano, and chives. Use a potting mix rather than soil, which can carry disease. A sunny windowsill is best.

Many types of pots and containers can be used, including simple plastic trays, but they should be at least 6 inches deep. Also get fertilizer specifically for edible plants! Use it about once per month. You don’t need to water herbs very often; just keep the soil barely moist so roots don’t get soggy. Cut and use them often.

As with other plants, they become fuller as they are clipped. You can also grow strawberries, tomatoes and sunflowers on the window sill. But I suggest you see your garden center for specific instructions. There are also windowsill herb and edible plant kits available, and these make really easy elderly activities too.

Windowsill Flower Gardens –  Special kits for these are available and they provide excellent senior gardening activities… of the mini variety. But you can also create a quick garden from flower cuttings as well. With a sharp knife, take cuttings from the garden of a friend or family member, or community garden. These should have about a 4 inch stem. Remove the bottom leaves of course, then place in a glass jar of water.

Canning jars are great, but so are smaller, decorative glass vases. Line them across the windowsill and watch them grow roots. Dump the water every week and replace with fresh water. These cuttings will last for many weeks.

If you still have them in the spring, plant them outdoors. If you want something practically indestructible, take cuttings from a philodendron plant. I had the same cuttings in water for, yes, two to four years! I then planted them, and 15 years later they’re still growing strong.

Cactus Window Gardens — My father moved here back to Minnesota after years in Arizona, so he likes cactus. You can get several kinds and line them across the windowsill in their pots. Or take them out of their pots, and transplant them all into a long plastic container.

Use gravel and sand in the mix as well. Try these projects as group. Seniors who enjoyed gardening in the past may like to have a way to garden again. Or it’s also a nice option for those interested in finding a hobby. Learning about and growing different types of cactus can itself develop into a hobby.

Grow an Amaryllis — An amaryllis bulb kit is very inexpensive, about $5.99, so ideal for senior activities with gardening. Although these kits are typically found in large discount stores like Target during the winter holidays, I’ve also found them in Walgreen’s during the summer. Amaryllis plants make fabulous senior gardening activities. Are you familiar with the amaryllis? They are tall and stately flowers with spectacular large blooms, several to a stalk.

Colors are typically brilliant red, pink and white. And do they ever grow fast. The kit comes with a bulb in soil, it soon sprouts, and then you can literally wake up every morning and see the difference. They can grow sometimes a half an inch a day. They’re fantastic for indoor senior gardening activities, and fantastic to watch, lasting about 6 weeks.

Dad gets a real kick out of growing an amaryllis. He likes to have me measure it each morning to see the difference. Follow the instructions to let it go dormant, then coax it to bloom again. In fact, if you handle the bulb correctly, it can last for years.

Aloe Vera Plants — Plant them or get them potted, and keep them around. These  are truly medicinal! I always have one, and often used them when raising my kids for wounds and burns. I also had it on hand for Dad. Just snip off the end of a leaf, and dab the juice/gel onto your skin. It really works in reducing pain from burns, plus helped us not get terrible redness and painful blisters. And it’s harmless to ingest, even edible.

Grow a Bonsai – Bonsai make intriguing senior gardening activities. You can find kits for amateurs in many places (I even found them at a big box home improvement store). Nurseries have them too, and you may be able to get a staff member to come out and give a short presentation, then get the group started. They might charge a fee or you may be able to get them do it for free, as a service to seniors.

At the very least, you’ll be able to get instructions online. Taking a group to a gardening show, nursery, or bonsai association, to see their displays also makes a nice outing.

Growing a bonsai does take some attention, but those who had been gardeners in the past will enjoy it. There may even be someone in your group who has done it before. Giving a bonsai kit also makes a great gift.

Outdoor Senior Gardening Activities

There are all kinds of regular garden to plant, of course, but here are a few specialty ideas to consider for senior gardening activities – butterfly gardens, hummingbird, and song bird gardens, as examples (see below).  And part of the fun is in the planning!

Butterfly Gardens

Spring is the season to plan for a butterfly garden. There are plenty of resources, whether online or at the library, to give the details on what to do, and when.
Basically, butterflies need host plants for the egg and caterpillar stages. And then nectar plants after they evolve into butterflies.

Milkweed is a favorite, and also attracts the Monarch, which in some areas is now becoming scarce. There are many others too, such as aster, verbena, sunflowers, phlox, day lilies, blanket flowers, black-eyed susans. There is a system to all this, and it can be fascinating. Find out more details at the National Wildlife Federation web site.

Butterfly gardens can include several aspects for senior gardening activities: the research, acquiring plants (if you don’t have them already), planting, observing the insects’ stages, and also arts and crafts projects with butterfly themes. Members of your group may be interested in joining in or leading these different phases. And the outcome is delightful.

Hummingbird Gardens

Hummingbirds are wonderful for senior gardening activities too, and ideal for spring. You may know that hummingbirds like shades of the color red (although they come to the yellow day lilies in my garden as well). Red, purplish-red and hot pink objects in the garden help attract them too.

And they like flowers with rich nectar. Some would include columbine, honeysuckles, bleeding hearts, impatiens and petunias. You can also get special feeders for hummingbirds, including those with red colored liquids.

Hummingbirds like water that is moving, such as a waterfall or fountain in the garden near the bright flowers. Since they’re small, thin types of perches are perfect for them, whether slender wires or bushes with branches.

Again, all of the details can be researched online or at the library. Or you may already have an expert in your group! Hummingbirds are also a wonderful theme for arts and crafts.

Attracting Song Birds

This will depend on where you live and what plants, shrubs, trees, etc. are local to your area. There are many dozens of song birds, and they are delightful to watch and listen to, providing a lovely addition to your senior gardening activities. Plus opportunities to learn something new, and participate in gardening to attract them.

Songbirds produce more of a variety and range of sound than birds that just make repetitive calls. Some common songbirds include, certain sparrows, some wrens, starlings, gold finch, warblers, nightingales. Birds need a place to nest, cool off, and also to drink and get wet. So a bird bath is very important. And things to eat, such as berries.

You can always consult a bird expert in your area. But generally, just provide a variety of sheltering trees including evergreens and hedges, food sources such as berry bushes and vines. Raking leaves under the shrubs will create mulch where worms and insects can live. Tall grasses produce seeds. Experts caution not to use harmful chemicals in gardens, as they do kill birds. So Going Green is good for them! And it’s also an interesting topic to learn about with senior gardening activities.

If you are interested in song birds, there are many other tips at a great web site from Cornell University, in their All About Birds section.  

Build a raised garden — Are you handy with wood? Or do you know someone who is? Perhaps they would volunteer some time to help build a raised garden, on legs, easy to access from chair level or standing. It can be placed either outdoors, or inside for year-around enjoyment. This is one of the truly special  activities that combines word working skills with gardening, and will bring months and years of satisfaction. And those who can’t help build may love to watch the progress.

Getting Gardening Started….

Get seed catalogs — And plan on what you can do and when with your senior gardening activities. This is more of an indoor project (like when it’s rainy or chilly out), related to outdoors. But it’s also fun to sit around a patio or picnic table with seed catalogs. Very fun to do with a group. Choose plants that bloom for a good part of the season, and that are easy to care for. Make a big calendar with your garden game plan – when to water, when to prune, when to pick or harvest.

Start Planting – There is nothing like planting a little something in some good, rich soil to cheer the spirit. Planting is one of the most satisfying parts of senior gardening activities. Instead of just looking at gardens, how about participating? A garden can be made just about anywhere, including on a small patio. Gardening boxes can also be elevated to table height to accommodate a wheelchair. Start seeds sprouting in containers of water, or small pots.

Check with your local nursery to see which are the best for sprouting this time of year, especially to begin indoors. They’re fun to watch grow! A nursery will help you decide what to begin with, and what supplies you will need. Your local garden club is also a great resource, and they love to help newcomers. There are many gardening books (even films) in libraries if you have never done this before. Begin simple.

Related Arts and Crafts

To go along with senior gardening activities, we have an assortment of artsy ideas throughout our web site…

FREE Templates — Lots to choose from for your projects. Go to our main craft templates page and then see where to get patterns for flowers, leaves, and even birds and animals to go with them. Use them on some of the projects we mention below.


Paint a Clay Pot
— Maybe you’d like to paint a clay pot to use for your planting (also great for artificial foliage). There are so many easy possibilities for painting clay pots, and can be made and used throughout all of the seasons. Not just spring and summer.  If you want something for the winter holidays, take a look at our samples on our painting clay pots page, and see what you can do to modify them with red and green colors, or white and blues with a snowflake.

Painting Florals on Glass — And also use the final project for displaying your flowers and cuttings. We have ideas for not only vases, but wine glasses – which can also be used for floating freshly cut blooms in a bit of water. Find out what to do at our how to paint glass page.

Creative Planters — To go along with your gardening, make a creative planter! Our ideas range from using an old vintage purse, to painting an old boot (or leave it plain). Even using an old bath tub!
See our page all about creative planter ideas.

This will give you a fun way to either grow or display your hard work! And just about everyone has or can get an old or unique something-or-other to re-purpose for planting.

Our Craft Book

Easy Crafts and Gifts — We have lots of crafts in many places on our web site. But why hunt all over? Our new crafts and many from this web site are all consolidated and organized. Several floral related themes too.
Over 120 projects. PLUS, a FREE  booklet of templates and patterns for your activities.
Two books for one! Get a sneak preview at the link above.

Also See:

Spring Senior Activities — Both general things to do throughout the whole season, and links to separate pages for March, April, May.
Summer Senior Activities — General ideas for the entire summer season, plus links to separate pages for June, July, August.

to Senior Activity Ideas

Get ideas about so much more you can do for your November senior activities! November is especially known for Thanksgiving, of course. But how about something new or unusual?

(And it’s also a good idea to review the real Thanksgiving, which we know so much more about today. There are several documentaries available, and perhaps through the library).

Themes:  Corn, turkeys, Native American themes, cornucopias, pilgrim hats, teepees, bare tree branches, pine cones, fall leaves.

Crafts – Make an easy centerpiece or collage for November senior activities, using dried foliage, as seen at the top of our page. Add a peacock feather for fun! For more craft ideas, see our pages on fall crafts for the elderly, which will also point you to a variety of pages.

Another easy idea is to use a simple image from nature as inspiration for a painting or collage.  Silhouettes are especially simple. In November you can also add a bit of snow. Here are basic ideas to use as designs…

More November Senior Activities

Commemorations for November:

National Family Caregivers Month – It started in 1997 as a commemorative week during the week of Thanksgiving. But now this commemoration has evolved into a month-long acknowledgment. The National Family Caregiver Support Program was set up in the year 2000 to help caregivers who are age 70 and over. It is part of The Older Americans Act of 1965.

A good month to be mindful of those of any age who are caregivers for their family. So plan special November senior activities with them. Some towns, facilities and churches have special services, luncheons and events for caregivers.

American Indian Heritage Month – Learn about the Native American cultures and history in your area, so important to the overall history of the Americas and Thanksgiving. Consider having a tribal member visit and give a presentation. If you’d like to make a fun craft with colored “Indian corn,” see our page about fall crafts for the elderly.

Drum Month – Music is important to have with your November senior activities. Have a visiting musician, including from a school. (I’m sure you’ll find a teen who is a good drummer). Talk about different kinds of drums. This is also a good time to have an event in conjunction with American Indian heritage.

Stamp Collecting Month — Stamp collecting is intriguing for many people, and is also a valuable hobby. Discussions and displays can be enjoyed by those interested. Some in your group may have samples that they are willing to show and share.

Aviation Month – Aviation has been a topic in other months also, and any aviation events are perfect to work into your November senior activities. Another chance to celebrate its history. If there’s a museum near you, it may be fascinating to visit. Or find an expert in the field to come and give a presentation. You may even have an expert in your group, or associated with it.

National Model Railroad Month — This celebration is sponsored primarily by the National Model Railroad Association. For those who are real model train enthusiasts, celebrate it in your November senior activities. There is a great interest in model trains and railroads. Some of your community or members may have been a collector of model trains or memorabilia. Perhaps they even have some items that they can share, a bit like show and tell.

National Pomegranate Month – This exotic fruit even involves Greek mythology about the goddess Persephone and the underworld. The deep ruby jewel-like seeds and juice have many health benefits (but may also interfere with some medications). I love eating the fresh fruit! Also try it in jam and juices, or sprinkle the seeds on cereal, ice cream, or in yoghurt.

National Novel Writing Month – Has any of your group aspired to writing a novel (even a short one)? An excellent project for November senior activities! It’s especially fun if you create a writing group to motivate each other. Some may enjoy dictating into a recorder or into a computer program, with a little assistance at editing. A great legacy for family and friends. And it’s easy and inexpensive  to self-publish through Amazon’s Kindle, or CreateSpace (for an actual printed book).

Family Stories Month – If writing a novel seems too much, try family stories. One of our treasured keepsakes from Dad is his life stories digitally recorded. Other family members have also written and shared story snippets. Then we published them in booklet form, with cover and spiral binding done at a copy/print store. Or create a photo book from an online site, to include pictures.

Peanut Butter Lovers Month – The Harvard Medical School has designated peanuts has a very healthy food (including its fats). Especially low- or no-sodium all-natural types. So spread it on toast, sandwiches, celery, crackers, and desserts (yummy with chocolate). Baking cookies and bars is a great group activity.

Dates For November:

November 1 – National Authors Day – November is a month for writing, and this day celebrates authors well-known, or not. Perhaps you. Or your group. Who are your favorite authors? Have a few readings, put inspiration quotes on table cards, or use them as inspiration for art projects.

November 2 – The Sistine Chapel was completed, 1480 – Then the famous fresco on its ceiling was painted by Michelangelo in intervals, 1508 -1545. For those interested in art and history, talk about Michelangelo, how many years it took to paint (decades!) and how it was made. Also get an illustrated book from the library, and/or see a movie, such as the classic, “The Agony and the Ecstasy.”

…Project — Perhaps your group would like to paint a mural on a small wall as one of your November senior activities. (See easy inspirational photos at the top of this page for design ideas). 

November 3 – Sandwich Day – Plan a special or unique sandwich for lunch. Maybe offer a buffet so folks can build their own. And since it’s peanut butter month, they’re a good option this day too.

November 4 – Candy Day – Have a little party and serve special candies, including no-sugar. Learn the history of candy. Sugar was first known in ancient India, and sugar cane was called  “reeds that produce honey without bees.” The first candy was boiled from sugar, and chunks were known as khanda. The history of chocolate is also fascinating. Some of your group may have homemade recipes to share, or even make. A candy pot luck is also a big hit.

November 4 – The first wagon train arrived in California – In May 1841, it left Independence, Missouri. For a historical flare for your November senior activities, we have a few ideas (more below). Talk about the history of wagon trains, and maybe watch a favorite old-time Western movie.

November 6 – Abraham Lincoln was elected president, 1860 – He had quite a life! This is a good time to have a special commemoration about him. Have inspirational readings, or put quotes on table cards. There are also many documentaries about his life, including at the library.

November 8 – The x-ray was discovered  – By German Wilhelm Röntgen in 1895. How far we have come since then! There may be medical folks in your group that would like to learn more about the history of this.

November 9 – Pursuit of Happiness Day – What makes you really happy? Family, pets, hobbies, helping others? Celebrate it in your November senior activities. The perfect day to discuss them and plan (in advance) activities around people’s favorites.  (And if you need hobby ideas, see our page on finding a hobby).

November 10 – Forget Me Not Day – This day celebrates those who make a difference in your life. November senior activities are a nice time for special efforts to include anyone who may be shy, introverted, lonely.

…Crafts — Make greeting cards or place setting cards with the blue forget-me-not flower as the theme. Also include the flowers in crafts on this day; the shapes are easy to draw or paint. Seed packets can also be ordered online to give away.

November 11 – Veterans Day – It is very likely that you have veterans in your group. It is important to acknowledge their service to our country. Have a special celebration, lunch, etc. And if you want to make a special patriotic craft, get general ideas on our 4th of July crafts page.

November 13 – World Kindness Day – Do something particularly kind on this day, and perhaps participate in a charity, or make something for another as part of your November senior activities. Do you know someone in need?  Making fleece blankets is popular and is easy to do. Or make a gift basket. Both are satisfying November senior activities.

November 16 – Button Day – Some people love to collect buttons. I’m sure I have hundreds in my box. Make a button craft like on a picture frame or in a collage, and include one or two unusual ones as focal points. See who has the most unique buttons.

November 17 – Take A Hike Day – (At least take a walk). Depending on your climate, November senior activities may still happen outside in the brisk fresh air. Perhaps take a stroll at a park or nature area. Fun with a pet too. Or even around the premises, walking paths or halls. Then gather back for special fall treats.

…Project — If you have collected dried foliage, make a simple collage against art board or a piece of wood. Spray with craft varnish to preserve and protect.

November 18 – Mickey Mouse’s Birthday – He’s older than I am by far! A perfect excuse for some unique November senior activities. For those interested, talk about Walt Disney, the creation of Mickey Mouse and other characters.

…Projects — For an art project, learn to draw or even trace Mickey. Art work can be copied, laminated, and turned into placemats. Or make smaller bookmarks. Or laminate the characters and use them as part of a centerpiece. Watch an old and/or new cartoon too. Check your library.

November, Third Thursday – Great American Smoke Out Day – First promoted in 1977, this event is sponsored largely by the cancer society, and encourages people to quit smoking. At least for 24 hours. Many find it easier to do this as a group motivation, and it’s ideal to include in your November senior activities. A good time to re-acquaint ourselves with the dangers of smoking.

November 19 – The Gettysburg Address – This famous address was delivered by Pres. Lincoln on November 19, 1863. It is now considered one of the greatest speeches of all time. It was just over 2 minutes long. Read the Gettysburg Address, and about its history. A good reminder of our freedoms.

November 20 – Peanut Butter Fudge Day – A delicious way to continue Peanut Butter Lovers Month! Making fudge can be a group activity, or serve with dessert or as a snack. Get creative and decorate your fudge squares! You can also find sugar-free fudge recipes online.

November 24 – Parfait Day – A parfait is simply a layered dessert of ice cream or yoghurt, fruits, pudding, jello, whipped cream, etc., served in a tall glass, and then garnished on top. So there are plenty of options for sugar-free too. Find out your group’s favorite ingredients (and maybe something unique), and serve for dessert.

Thanksgiving – The third Thursday of the month – No doubt you already have many November senior activities revolving around Thanksgiving!

November 27 – Nobel Peace Prize established, 1901 – Alfred Nobel established the Nobel Prizes in the late 1880s. One Prize category was for peace, for those who “shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.” He was a rich Swedish industrialist and inventor (of dynamite and other explosives), and an armaments manufacturer.  The Peace Prize may have been one way he tried to compensate. 

November 28 – The first American automobile race, 1895 – 54 miles from Chicago to Evanston, Illinois. The prize was $5000. Did or does anyone own a vintage car? Or ever participate in a long-distance race? Also fun to get out those miniature vintage model cars of all kinds and show them off. For those into old autos, you may find books at the library to display, or offer a digital slide from online images, during a meal or snack.

…Crafts — Photos or print-outs of vintage cars are perfect to use in collages and decoupage projects too; i.e., on boxes clocks, or backgrounds behind old family photos.

November 29 – National Square Dance Day – Just in time for some fun exercise to work off all those Thanksgiving calories! Plan a bit of dancing in November senior activities. With roots in traditional English, Irish and Scottish folk dancing, in the U.S. it became associated with cowboys. So use a Western theme on this day too. Consider having lessons, or get a live band to visit. You may have members who are already good at square dancing.

November 30 – Mark Twain was born, 1835 to 1910 – What a character! A fascinating life to study. (Oddly, he was born and died, which he predicted, during the passing of Halley’s Comet). He was a popular writer for the senior generation. Watch a Mark Twain bio movie — “Mark Twain” by Ken Burns. Or a movie about Tom Sawyer or Huck Finn. Also easy to read a short story.

Our Book

Easy Crafts and Gifts

Instead of searching all over our web site for craft ideas, get some of our top crafts along with loads of new ones all organized here. Over 120 projects! PLUS a FREE booklet of templates for your activities. You get TWO books for one! So check out all the details (with plenty more options for November senior activities).

Also see:

Perfect Party Theme Ideas — For all year, including for your November senior activities.
Easy Healthy Recipes — Try something new for holidays, parties, any time. Delicious and healthy!

To Fall Senior Activities

To Senior Activities – By The Month

scarecrow

Autumn is a favorite season for many, and perfect for fall senior activities, games, parties. It’s an excellent time for crafts too, and art supplies are easy to get. The interesting items from nature, the pumpkins, gourds, apples, and bright colors.

Also opportunities for all kinds of outings, and maybe new retirement ideas. Plus we have loads of scrumptious recipes. In fact, many of the days in fall are special commemorative days just for celebrating foods. Like apples, chocolate, hot dogs, popcorn, cookies, even ice cream!

So see sections below for fun links to various fall senior activities and recipes..

To jump to a specific month, click a link:

September Senior Activities
October Senior Activities
November Senior Activities

General Fall Senior Activities

Easy fall centerpiece craft

Here are ideas that can be used throughout fall…
Do be sure to add a craft or two to each month. To get started, here’s an easy one that can be done throughout the season…

Fall Centerpiece Craft — Fall is a great time to get outside in nature, gather some natural items, and make something special. Like an easy centerpiece, which are great fall senior activities.

In the example, we simply filled a vase with pebbles from outside, topped with a little potpourri. Then inserted several stems of the dried plants we gathered.

Lastly, we tied a couple strands of raffia around the vase for a final touch.

General Fall Themes – Favorite themes to use in crafts and other fall senior activities…
Squirrels, pumpkins, gourds, grapes, apples, leaves (See our leaf template page), corn, the full moon, bats, wheat, hay bales, cornucopias, ducks and geese, scarecrows, crows and ravens. (You’ll see free templates for many as you follow our various links).

squirrel template

Also see pages for:
Outdoor Elderly Activities
Fall Crafts for the Elderly
Easy Halloween Crafts
Halloween Treats for Seniors

Outings — A fabulous time to add outings to your fall senior activities. You may be familiar with many: taking strolls through parks and gardens, visiting arboretums, and drives to see fall colors,

Also collect items from nature to use later in centerpieces and crafts (We have lots of ideas coming up. Also, if you spray cattails and milkweed pods with fixative, they won’t as easily “shed”). Visiting pumpkin and gourd patches are favorites, and the nostalgic apple orchard. Some offer hay rides, apple picking, treats to buy, and have cafes too. 

It’s also football season, so you may have many in your group interested in taking in a game, pro or not. Plus outdoor picnics and barbeques, complete with a hay bale or two.

And if you did some straw bale gardening this year (whether vegetables, herbs, or flowers), it’s time to go out and harvest! Your edibles will be fantastic to use in autumn recipes. If you didn’t make a straw bale garden (yet) click the link and see how easy it is for next year, from a national expert who wrote a special article for us. A perfect way for seniors to garden.

Take a pet for a walk (either yours or someone else’s) and/or play with them outdoors in the crispy colorful leaves. Animals can be a real mood picker-up! So maybe even have a fall pet day.

pumpkins with dog

More…

Pressing Flowers and Leaves – As you have outings to gather foliage and flowers, you can also press them between the pages of stacks of heavy books (using paper towels under and over them to prevent stains), or iron them between wax paper and newspaper, the old fashioned way. Then arrange in picture frames or decoupage in a variety of crafts. Leaves can be decoupaged onto vases; or canvas board that has been painted with a colorful base coat of acrylics.

Parties! – Themed parties are perfect for fall senior activities. There is always football, Halloween and Thanksgiving. But what about trying something new. We have lots of suggestions on our perfect party theme ideas page!

gift basket

Gift Baskets – The abundance of autumn offers a special opportunity for giving in your fall senior activities. And not only for Thanksgiving. It’s so easy to create personal gift baskets – for give-aways too, fund raisers, silent auctions, the sick or needy. Or a friend, family member, or occasion like a birthday.

If you know about the recipient’s preferences, hobbies, etc.,  we’ve lots of theme suggestions. Perhaps include homemade items and treats – more fun fall senior activities to do. Check easy ideas to make a gift basket.

Basket Weaving – Learn how using willow, reeds, grasses, raffia, etc. This is an ideal activity to learn either individually or as a group. There are easy directions online, or have a knowledgeable person teach a class; perhaps have a guest teacher come in. There may also be local classes to attend. Use them at home, as gifts, or for centerpieces. It also gives more meaning when creating a gift basket, if you’ve actually made the basket too.

Gift Shawls – One of the most meaningful items Dad and I received was when the parish nurse visited us with prayer shawls handmade by women and men from church, while praying; mine is the one shown. At any rate, shawls are wonderful fall senior activities to do, and you may find men might want to join in. You can do basic knitting, or more advanced, depending on your group. It’s great fun to sit around the table, listen to music, chat, and partake in refreshments (of course!).

Pinecone Crafts – Fall is a great pinecone season, and in most areas you can find them small to very large (like some forests in California). Or craft stores often carry them. With other items from nature and basic supplies, you can turn pinecones into all sorts of things. Use during the winter holidays too. Check out our pinecone crafts.

Relaxation Coloring Group — I know someone who goes to a bi-monthly coloring group, working on gorgeous designs like florals, mandalas, and stained glass. They get sheets sometimes online, and sometimes buy booklets. Plus lots of great conversation and food! It started as a way to spend time indoors when fall came, and has been going ever since. The group just loves it!

Burlap Crafts — Burlap is a fall-ish fabric, and flexible! Use it to decoupage on the tops of wooden boxes, onto bird houses, make flowers from them and sew or glue to projects. Try it as backings for collages, in picture frames, or book covers. Decorate jars (including filled with jams and treats you’ve made) or vases, tied with a little raffia, like the one we found, below.

Leaf Projects — There’s nothing like the color of autumn leaves for fall senior activities. You may remember pressing them between heavy books, or ironing them between pieces of wax paper and newspaper.

Then they’re perfect to use in collages, including on canvas boards. Paint a base coat over the board first as background, then decoupage on a swirl of leaves. When dry, you can add lines of stems and vines with marker or 3D squirt paint, if you’d like. Try decoupaging leaves onto a vase or large glass pillar candle holder. We also have leaf template ideas to use at this link.

Painting Pumpkins – Fall senior activities often involve pumpkin themes, but not everyone can carve them. So pull out the paints instead! From floral motifs, to leaves, to comical characters, there are lots of projects to try. Make them as easy as you’d like. Perfect to use in centerpieces, for parties, add to gift baskets, and as give-aways. Find out what to do at painting pumpkins and gourds.

…And pumpkins can be used as planters too. Just slice off the top and hollow them out as usual, then insert a pot with plants, a vase of fresh flowers, or artificial flowers and foliage. If you’re using real plants, be sure your container has a draining tray underneath it.

Painting on Apples or Oranges — We have many ideas for on our apple craft page about how to “paint” or draw designs on them with a simple opaque white marker. (And see lots more apple projects too). Also try the same idea using black marker on oranges. Stand fruit in a row and create a continuous type of design. as shown with the oranges below.

paint oranges with markers

Gourd Crafts – This is a favorite for fall senior activities, and our memory care patients also used it, with a little extra help.

Gourds come in all kinds of colors and odd shapes, inspiring whimsical characters. Like a gourd goose, or gourd ghouls, ghosts, and grannies too. Pumpkins are a type of gourd and can come in fun little sizes. See projects at gourd craft ideas.

craft books

Our Craft Book

Easy Crafts and Gifts –
Why hunt
around our web site to find all of our different crafts. Get lots of new crafts; and many from our website too, all organized and consolidated in our e-book! Over 120 projects. PLUS, you get a FREE booklet of template and patterns!  Two books for one!

vintage pumpkin patch

Also see:

Halloween Treats for Seniors – whimsical and delicious!

Fun Elderly Activities – Get lots of activities for those who may need a little extra help or have limitations.

To Senior Activities – By the Month

Having easy edible flower recipes in your list of fun senior and elderly activities will add an interesting and probably new experience. They will add elegance and pizzazz to whatever you are serving, be it a full-fledged party or special dessert. And they’re especially fun to use in the winter when the bad-weather blahs may have hit.

Edible flowers have been popular in various places in Europe for quite some time and is actually an ancient tradition. Lately they have been making a come-back in the U.S.

My daughter recently returned from Europe and brought me a jar of home-made Rose Jam from a farmer’s market in Moldova. It is sweet and delicious with a hint of rose flavor and aroma. Perhaps you know someone who used to make jam – this would be an easy project for them to research and teach to a group to make.

So here are a few things to do with edible flowers, and things you should know about them. For a flower to be truly edible, you must be certain of a few things. Learning about and working with edible flowers creates all sorts of opportunities for senior activities, and can be modified for the more elderly as well.

My Friend’s Tips

The following are a few tips from a friend of mine who specializes in growing and gathering herbs and flowers to use in her own natural products.

Facts About Edible Flowers

  • In order to be edible, the flowers must be either designated as “edible” at a store or through a catalog, indicating there were no chemicals or pesticides used.
  • A farmer’s market or specialty food store may carry them.
  • If you buy them, make sure they are organic.
  • It is best not to buy your flowers from a florist or garden store. They probably have used chemicals so cannot be used in any edible flower recipes.
  • If you grow your own flowers, do not ever use pesticides.
  • If you gather your flowers — my friend advises that if you pick them in the wild, be sure to stay at least 50 feet away from any road or highway.
  • When using edible flower recipes, cut your flowers close to the blossom, preferably just before you are ready to use them. Gathering early in the morning when they are fresh and dewy is best, says my friend.
  • Be sure to always thoroughly wash the plants to get rid of bugs and debris like seeds, twigs, dirt, etc.
  • Caution: — Be sure to learn about your flowers – certain flower parts may be toxic or inedible. For instance, for certain flowers, it may be okay to use petals. But leaves and berries could be poisonous.
  • Also be aware whether anyone in your group has serious plant allergies.

Popular Edible Flowers

Here is a short list of some of the popular flowers for edible flower recipes that my friend has recommended using. There are many more options, and a supplier can supplement this list. Some are especially good in desserts, some in salads. You can taste them yourself and get a sense of what you would like to put them on.

Lavender
Calendula (marigold)
Roses
Tulip petals
Geraniums
Pansies
Lilac
Honeysuckle
Hibiscus
Impatiens
Tulips
Carnations
Johnny jump ups

You can certainly buy edible flowers that are already prepared, including online (be sure the company is reputable). But here are a few things you can do yourself.

Floral Ice Cubes

Using petals and small buds in ice cubes is charming and easy to add to edible flower recipes. There are a few things to know when doing this.

Ice cubes can look murky. But if you boil water for a couple minutes and then fill the trays, the cubes will be clearer. Also, the flower will want to float to the top of the water in the ice cube tray.

So to fully cover the flowers, fill the water half way up, add the flowers, freeze, then cover the flowers with more water and freeze again. This will ensure they are completely within the ice cube. Unless, that is, you want the look of the flower peeking up out of the top of the ice.

It’s also fun to have colored ice by using either fruit juice, or adding a little food coloring. In this case, in order to see the flowers well, you’d want to make sure they are near the tops of the cubes or poking out.

Making Sugared Flowers and Petals

Sugaring petals (or whole small flowers and buds) makes a fun activity. They can be saved for later too. Use them on top of special cupcakes, ice cream desserts, or fancy fruit salads. No doubt you will come up with many ideas of your own.

What You Need
Your fresh, organic flowers or petals
Small dish of water
1 egg white at room temperature
Fine sugar
Wax paper
Tweezers
Paint brush

Wash and pat dry your flowers. Beat the egg white until frothy, and then add about 3 drops of water to smoothen it. Pick up the flowers with a tweezer and dip in the egg white, spreading it around all over on both sides with a very slightly damp paint brush. You can add a couple more drops of water, if needed, to make it brush on well.

When coated, sprinkle with the fine sugar on both sides. You can also use colored sprinkle sugar (as used in cookie decorating), but it is coarser.

After they are sugared, place the flowers on your wax paper, and let them dry out until slightly brittle. (This can take 2 to 3 days). If you are going to keep them for future use, put them in a plastic container covered tightly with a lid, and separate the layers with wax paper. I have also kept them in the freezer.

Floral Fruit Salad

Here are a couple fun edible flower recipes, using a fruit salad with a color scheme! You may be familiar with Ambrosia – a tossed fruit salad using a large variety of fruit of your choice. (See our ambrosia fruit salad recipe page with ideas for toppings and dessert as well).

Red Floral Fruit Salad

Lightly toss together any of the following, plus any other pink or red fruits you may fancy. The amounts are flexible, according to what you like. Being red, these are also perfect for Valentine’s Day.

    ½ to 1 of cup cubed watermelon
    ½ cup pitted cherries
    1 cup diced strawberries
    ½ cup raspberries
    1 cup cubed red apples
    ½ cup cubed red plums
    1 cup red grapes
    ½ cup pink grapefruit
    ½ cup pomegranate seeds

After you have lightly mixed together the previous fruit, carefully add in your red edible flower petals, such as rose or carnation. Making sugared petals, as described above, are delicious for this. You can also gently mix in some whipped cream tinted with a drop or two of red food coloring to make it pink.

Yellow Floral Fruit Salad

Follow the general instructions above, but use yellow fruit such as:

    ½ to 1 cup peaches or nectarines
    ½ to 1 cup papaya chunks
    1 cup chopped yellow apples
    ½ to 1 cup sliced banana
    ½ to 1 cup pineapple chunks
    ½ to 1 cup fresh apricot chunks
    1 cup cantaloupe chunks

You can garnish with lemon rind (candied is delicious), as well as yellow flower petals of your choice.

White Floral Fruit Salad

Here are some options for a lovely white fruit salad, perfect for anniversaries, showers, or parties of any kind. Using elegant dishes will really dress it up. Perhaps a little mimosa (orange juice and champagne) as well?

    ½ to 1 cup of peeled apples ½ to 1 cup of sliced bananas½ to 1 cup pear chunks½ to 1 cup white peaches or nectarines½ cup shredded coconut

Many of the edible flower recipes are delicious with whipped cream but this one is especially so. It will look lovely with a crystallized, sugared flower on top, particularly if you are making individual servings.

Floral Fruit Dessert

Edible flowers can be used on cupcakes and cakes of all kinds.

Or if you are looking for edible flower recipes to use for dessert, you can use the floral fruit salad idea as described above. First place a scoop of strawberry ice cream in a bowl (I put the ice cream on the bottom so it doesn’t squash any fruit or the flower petals). On top of the ice cream add about a cup of your fruit mix. Finally, garnish with more rose and/or carnation petals. You might like to add a contrasting colored flower to be an accent color.

I have also dipped a carnation (use mini sizes if you want them in individual servings) in water, sprinkled lightly with sugar (or Splenda), then placed it in a small dish to freeze. This make a lovely topping for any dessert or salad. And it’s edible.

Also see our Ambrosia Fruit Dessert on the ambrosia fruit salad recipePlus, see which festive ideas on our fresh strawberry desserts page would be make fun edible flower recipes.

Floral Beverages

Besides floating lovely ice cubes with petals of mini flowers in your favorite beverage, try making a few of these beverages; or use any of your own favorites as edible flower recipes.

Floral Mimosa
Use a 50/50 combo for these delicious drinks.
If you are serving a larger group, use one bottle of champagne (non-alcoholic grape beverages are a nice option also), and 1 carton of orange juice. Mix together well. Add in your flowers and ice cubes, if using. For individual glasses, proportions would be approximately half orange juice and half champagne, per glass.

Flower Punch

You can use any basic punch recipe that you have, then add your floral ice cubes and float some petals as well. When you bring it out to serve, you can also float several scoops of sherbert; and top of each place an edible flower (I have used my frozen crystallized carnations as described above). Eventually the sherbert melts into the punch, leaving the flowers to glide on the top of your punch bowl. And any punch can be color-specific with your theme – just change out the punch, fruit and flower colors.

Basic Punch Recipe:

1 (64 oz.) container of fruit punch (or flavor of your choice)
1 (2 liter) bottle of gingerale (sparkling wine is a great substitute)
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 cup raspberries
I cup sliced bananas
1 orange, sliced
I gallon of sherbert, your choice of flavors
2 trays of ice cubes (with edible flowers or petals)
First put the liquids into your punch bowl and stir. Gently add in the fruit. Float as many scoops of sherbert as you’d like on the top. And of course, don’t forget your flowers and floral ice cubes.

Easy Sangria Recipe

Our easy sangria recipe is sure to add sparkle to your festivities. Choose a recipe for either red or white wine. They’re different! Or sparkling grape juice is delicious too. Just add a few flower petals of your choice, and float your floral ice cubes.

Activities

Here is a summary of some of the interesting senior activity ideas that come from working with edible flowers and edible flower recipes:

  • Learning (including research) about edible flowers
  • Flower identification
  • Having a flower presentation by an expert or someone in your group
  • Growing your own gardens, including indoors in the winter
  • Gathering flowers, either your own or in the wild
  • Using the edible flowers in recipes, etc.
  • Having special parties and teas with edible flowers in the desserts, salads and beverages
  • Making sugared flowers, including to give as gifts
  • Having an edible flower tasting party – flavors do vary

Edible flower research can make a really fun activity. You will find that various kinds have various tastes – some citrusy, some spicy, some sweet. Using them in various foods is a great experiment. Have an expert from a nursery or organic garden give a talk to your group.

Better yet, if you have someone in your group with experience in edible flowers – you have it made! So try out some of these edible flower recipes and activities for yourself. It’s something a little bit different to do any time of year, whether outdoors or in.

Get more edible flower recipes:

Delicious Healthy Dessert Recipes — Our healthy dessert recipes are delicious and fresh. Lots of ways to modify and use them too, including for low salt or sugar ideas. Think how you can use them as edible flower recipes.
Valentine’s Day Desserts — These Valentine’s Day Desserts are simple but unique. And healthy! Of course there are ways to dress them up or make them decadent too! Including using them for edible flower recipes.

to Senior Activity Ideas

If you’re looking for some June senior activities that go beyond the ordinary, you’ve come to the right page.

Whether crafts, recipes and food, games, outdoor fun, outings, we’ve got all sorts of ideas. And some are quite unique.

They’re suitable for, or can be modified for any abilities; and for individuals or groups. Perhaps you have favorites planned already, but there’s always room for something new! So make your planning easy – take a peek…

Our sections include both the commemorations for the month, and also actual calendar dates (for which we give things to do so you don’t have to come up with it all yourself. Unless you want to.)

Our June Senior Activities

Commemorations for June


National Ice Tea Month –  Be sure to see a wonderful alternative ice tea recipe ideas with a surprise splash, contributed by one of our readers! 
  
Dairy Month – Dairy is all about ice cream, cheese, milkshakes, butter, whipped cream and such. (Do check out our page with Dad’s traditional chocolate milkshake recipe.) There are loads of ways to work in dairy food, nutrition, into your June senior activities throughout this month. I find it fascinating how dairy farming has changed over the decades, from how it was in Dad’s childhood days on the farm, v.s. the technology of today. This can make a fascinating learning experience for kids too.

National Candy Month – This can include sugarless candy for those with restrictions, as well as some of my favorites – those made with honey and maple syrup. It’s an opportunity for folks to share special recipes and even do some candy making. We have a page with a delicious marzipan recipe, a traditional European candy. Although popular at Christmas, it’s also perfect to add into your June senior activities. It’s especially fun since marzipan can be molded like clay into shapes like fruit, animals and characters.

Black Music Month – Music is always a hit for June senior activities. And this is a great chance to study the rich contributions of African Americans to the music scene. Play your favorite music old and new, and/or have local musicians come in and perform, including students. This is also a good time to watch a movie or documentary about the music and life of well-knowns. You may even consider having an easy karaoke evening, as one of our readers explains.

Women’s Golf Month – Just for the ladies. Activities can range from a trip to a local golf course for those who are more serious golfers, to a nearby miniature golf range, to setting up a little putting game outside in your own area, complete with treats and beverages party style.

…..Craft – For a golf related craft, get an old picture frame with wide edges (check thrift shops and dollar stores). You can sand and paint it with acrylics, or clean it well and use it as is. Then get a bunch of old golf tees and glue them around the edges of the frame. Options: Colored tees look fun, or spray paint them first.

Great Outdoors Month – Pres. Barak Obama proclaimed June to be Great Outdoors Month, in 2015. Throughout the month we can be mindful of, and enjoy the fresh air of the great outdoors during June senior activities. So take a field trip to a local area, even if it is a park. If your group is unable to do an outing, you can still have something special going on outdoors wherever you are this month.

You might also have a slide show of images of our national parks and forests. Members can contribute photos that they may have. It is easy to turn them into a digital slide presentation against a wall or screen. Show it at a special lunch or dinner.

International Men’s Month –  What are the favorite things that the men in your group like to do? Be sure to emphasize these during this month, and also the contributions the men have made throughout their lives. Showing photos or doing write-ups in a newsletter are other approaches to celebrate.

National Accordion Awareness Month – Many seniors are familiar with the energetic sound of the accordion. And it is quite probably someone knows how to, or used to, play one. Now is the time to pull it out and celebrate! Put a little music into your June senior activities. Or you may be able to find a local band to visit, and even host a dance. In the least, find some music on a CD or online, and be sure to play it at a special lunch or dinner.

National Fresh Fruit and Vegetables Month – This one is easy! Serve something a little bit different a few times at your meals. An unexpected fruit or vegetable is easy to include in your June senior activities, parties, and any meals. You can also give information about it and its benefits at a card at each table. If it’s a really fabulous recipe, share it too!

Turkey Lover’s Month – Not just for Thanksgiving. (I happen to love turkey burgers). And one year I had a Thanksgiving dinner in summer just for fun, because we were really hungry for all the food! Whatever your plan, serve a little turkey this month.

National Soul Food Month – Just the phrase, “soul food,” sounds wonderful. This is a popular type of cuisine famous in the southern U.S. Some favorites include fried chicken, cornbread, okra, hushpuppies, collards, and of course grits. These are but a few. It depends where in the south one is visiting or living. If you’re living in the area, celebrate it this month! If not, venture into a new cuisine adventure and try something unusual. 

Dates For June

June 1 – Say Something Nice Day. Perfect to build any June senior activities around – maybe a party, special luncheon or dinner; or perhaps a favorite game modified to include saying nice things. You might also consider giving awards to those who especially deserve it.

June 3 – National Banana Split Day. Time for a special dessert!

June 5 – World Environment Day. This is a global awareness celebration to remind us to take care of our planet earth, established by the U.N. in 1972. In 2013 a lovely poem was written by Abhay K, to commemorate this day. It may be of interest to copy onto tent cards and place at each table.

“Earth Anthem” by Abhay K
…”Our cosmic oasis, cosmic blue pearl
the most beautiful planet in the universe
all the continents and the oceans of the world
united we stand as flora and fauna
united we stand as species of one earth
black, brown, white, different colours
we are humans, the earth is our home.

…Our cosmic oasis, cosmic blue pearl
the most beautiful planet in the universe
all the people and the nations of the world
all for one and one for all
united we unfurl the blue marble flag
black, brown, white, different colours
we are humans, the earth is our home.”All people, no matter what age, can be aware of now we treat out planet and use resources, including eliminating waste. Some communities have little (or larger) clean-up efforts on this day as well. At least it warrants our awareness.

June 6 – National Family Day. Great time to have a family picnic, party and games with your June senior activities. A favorite is having a gone fishing party. Lots of ideas here with a fish theme. And remember, “family” can also mean the community around you.

June 9 — Home Sweet Home Day.  A nice time for group members to share memories about their homes, whether that be where they were born and grew up, or where they raised their own families. But just as important, where home is right now. And if your group lives in a senior community, have a special party to celebrate that, and the friends and companionship that go along with it. (If you’d like party ideas, see our party theme ideas page).

June 11 – Jacques Cousteau born, 1910. Cousteau was probably one of the most famous oceanographers (plus an explorer, conservationist, scientist and author), even having his own TV show. I watched it many times when I was young. Have an ocean, fish or sea creature theme for this day. Shells, the octopus, turtles, and seahorses are just a few themes. And seafood or fish for a meal. You may even be able to get hold of a Jacques Cousteau film or video from the library or online.

June 14 – U.S. Flag Day. In 1777 the Second Continental Congress adopted the flag of the United States. See lots of red, white and blue ideas on our page at 4th of July Crafts – you’ll get activities you can use not just in June senior activities, but also for many patriotic days.

June 15 – Nature Photography Day. A good excuse to get outside! For anyone who is interested in photography, whether with a traditional camera, digital, or even on a cell phone. It couldn’t get easier. Photography is so easy these days and lends itself to a variety of June senior activities, and throughout the year too.

Photograph something special from the gardens, or have a field trip to a popular nature destination. Then transfer those photos to a computer, print them out, and use them for a variety of projects. For 8×11.5 or larger paper size, laminate them and use them as placemats.

Or do special picture frame crafts for your photos. (What you decorate the frame with can be related to what’s in the photo – find out what we mean). Or use your photos in a collage. There are lots of possibilities.

June 15 – Smile Day.  Anything that makes people smile will work for this day. Serve foods and desserts with smiley themes, smiley balloons, and games.

…..Crafts — You can easily make your own smiley-face crafts. Use markers to draw them on yellow paper plates and cups. Stickers can be purchased to put on napkins. Small plates or circles can also be glued to a craft stick to put in plants or centerpieces. Make your own smiley balloons – simply black marker on yellow balloons.

…..Try the Smile Toss Game – Sit in a circle and toss a light-weight ball or even balloon with a smile painted on it (marker works too).  Everyone in the circle smiles, except the person who is “IT” with the ball. If he/she forgets to wipe their smile off when they get the ball, they get points. The person with the least points wins. Or another version is, they must drop out. There are many versions of this game. It usually erupts in lots of laughs, so it’s very challenging to not smile!

June 16 – Fudge Day. Use this day to add a little sweetness to your June senior activities – make fudge. Or have it as a fudge-tasting day. Serve several kinds, from chocolate, to vanilla, to butterscotch, even strawberry. Members of your group may also like to make their own fudge themselves and then bring it to share, potluck style. And also share the recipe.

June 17 – Chocolate Chip Cookie Day. What could be easier? Serve them for dessert after a meal, or at a snack time. And if you’re making them as a project, remember chocolate chips now come in lots of colors and flavors! So try something new too.

June 17 – The Statue of Liberty arrived in New York Harbor. This is a fascinating story, and there are a couple of documentaries available to see. We like to include movies into our June senior activities (to be seen outdoors or in). You may find them at your local library. Folks in your group may have memories about visiting the landmark, or even an immigration experience to share.

June 18 – International Picnic Day. Picnics are standard June senior activities, so be sure to have one on this day. And if the weather is bad, move the picnic inside. But do have one, with all the summertime bells and whistles.

June 19 – Garfield the Cat Day. Everyone is familiar with comical Garfield. Let him be the whimsical center of attention today.

…..Craft — Go online and find a cartoon of the character. He can be traced for many different arts and crafts projects. Perhaps a small 2 or 3 inch Garfield – make a whole sheet of paper with many Garfields, which you can then laminate and cut out individually. Or even easier, draw a simple oval around his shape and cut out the oval. Then glue it to the middle of a length of wide ribbon, at least 12 inches long. When dry, tie the ribbon around a napkin, and you have an instant and simple napkin ring. You can also enlarge an image to an 8×11.5 paper size, and laminate it for place mats. At a party supply store, I have often seen Garfield items, so consider this also.

June 19 – Baseball Day. For sports enthusiasts, the first organized baseball game was played in Hoboken, New Jersey, in 1846, under Alexander Joy Cartwright’s new official rules. The New York Base Ball Club defeated the Knickbockers. Bring out the baseball memorabilia, put on a cap and watch a game, either live or on TV. And don’t forget the hot dogs, peanuts and beer (or ice tea or lemonade). Little League is really fun, and so is swinging a wiffle bat and ball. Or tossing a softball or wiffle ball into a hoola hoop or at a target. Baseball is a standard for June senior activities.

Father’s Day – We all know about this one. It is celebrated at different times around the world, but in the U.S. it’s the third Sunday of June.

June 20 or 21 – Summer Solstice. (Can vary). This commemorates the beginning of summer and longest day of the year. Many ancient monuments around the world, including Egypt, Babylon, China, Greece, Central and South America, and the British Isles such as Stonehenge, measured the sun and the seasons. You can always include a bit of history into June senior activities. It’s a chance to learn about the sundial and ancient calendars, their history, and perhaps make a sundial yourself. If you have a garden, setting up a nice sundial can be a fascinating feature to watch.

June 20 – Bald Eagle Day. Bald (meaning, with a white head) eagles are usually found near water and lots of tall trees. Do you have any in your area? If so, perhaps a field trip could happen on this day. It’s the national bird and animal of the United States and is found on the official seal. It is also very important to the Native American culture. There was a time when the bald eagle was endangered, but now it is no longer on the list.

An eagle image would provide a nice theme for arts and crafts projects. And for those interested in nature, a presentation may be of interest, especially if you can have an expert come out and visit. There are several documentaries about the bald eagle, including “American Eagle” from PBS, See of you can find something in your local library.

June 24 – Henry VIII crowned King of England. For those history buffs, Henry was one of the most famous and notorious kings in history. There are a variety of movies and documentaries available about Henry VIII and his wives. And why not have tea and crumpets (similar to an English muffin) with jam. Or at least fancy pastries.

Have your own Renaissance Fair as one of your June senior activities. These are famous fairs that travel around the country in summer and fall, so why not have a party of your own. At least a mini version.

It could consist of drinking and eating (turkey legs, corn on the cob, cheese curds, old fashioned pretzels, pickles, hearty bread and rolls, soups including in a bread bowl, bratwurst, fish n’ chips, kettle chips, fudge, candies, pastries, ale, even pizza), music (get music online or from the library), juggling, magic shows, short plays, comedy, and  a few animals also would be a welcome addition.

Make it as simple as you’d like. Or if you can swing it, even have a few people come in costume. With some planning, it can also serve as a fund raiser, open to the public. If you ever have a craft fair, it can easily be incorporated into the Renaissance theme too.

June 27 – Helen Keller’s Birthday (1880). What an amazing role model. “The Miracle Worker” is a much-loved movie to remember her amazing life.

June 28 – Artist Peter Paul Rubens born, 1577.  For those who enjoy art and history, Rubens was a painter in the Flemish Baroque tradition, a style with much movement, drama, and extravagance. He did many portraits and paintings with religious and mythological themes. He lived during times of great turmoil in Europe, a challenging time for artists as well.

His life and work are quite interesting as a presentation. And certainly books of his art can be found in the library. With art presentations, lots of images can be found online as well, and a slide show given. Perhaps members of your group would like to lead a presentation as one of your June senior activities.

June 30 – Meteor Day. Meteors are also called shooting starts and are sometimes seen throughout summer. You can use the shooting star theme for your June senior activities (and perhaps even see some in the evening – so keep your eyes on the weather report).

Have an evening party with shooting star décor, which can be made during a craft activity. Stars (and moons too) can readily be found on stickers, which can be adhered to napkins, cups, tablecloths, etc. For those interested in science, a presentation could be given about the meteor, meteor showers, meteorites, comets, etc. and their significance throughout history.

We have tried to include subjects and themes of many different types in these June senior activities, as your group may have varied interests. So hopefully some of them will appeal to you!

Also see:

Our Craft Book

Easy Crafts and Gifts — You don’t have to hunt all over our site to find crafts. We’ve got lots of NEW ideas, plus many from here, all organized for you. Over 120 projects. Plus a FREE booklet of templates and patterns you can use for many activities. Two for One! Get a sneak peek at the link.

Fun Elderly Activities — An array of things to do for those who may need more help, or modification.
To Summer Senior Activities

To Senior Activities – By The Month

We probably are all familiar with March senior activities like St. Patrick’s Day and the coming of spring. But there are so many more March and spring activities as well!

Take a look at our suggestions below – both the general commemorations for the month and also specific calendar dates for some fun activities to add to your agenda.

With all these possibilities, planning in advance should be a lot easier! And adding a bit of spontaneity too.

Our March Senior Activities

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Leprechaun

I just had to sneak in a special March project since I’ve been on a roll with chocolate covered strawberries — a little leprechaun for your March senior activities. Great for parties, dessert, at place settings, prizes, etc.

Following the directions below, or get more details at how to make chocolate covered strawberries.

Melt a cup or so of white chocolate chips in the microwave (for 30 seconds, then stir, then 15 second intervals after that, until the last chips are almost melted).

Add a drop of green food coloring, and stir. Slice off the leaf end of the berries so they are flat – so the hat will sit on the head well. Dip the berries in the chocolate, then lay them on wax paper on a plate.The wide part will be the top of the head. Later you’ll put a beard on the narrow chin area.

Press in a candy for the nose while the chocolate is still soft. You can put in candy eyes too. Put the berries in the fridge for 10 to 15 minutes so the chocolate can harden. Then I “painted” in eyes with a paint brush and black (or chocolate) icing in a tube, as well as the mouth.

THE BEARD — Put a bit of white frosting in a tub, or tube icing, into a dish. Add a drop of yellow and red food coloring, to make orange. Mix. Apply with a toothpick in a U-shape around the chin and up the sides of the face.

THE HAT – Was made by painting an old spool from thread black, and gluing it onto a large black button for the rim. Or use colored paper. Add a shamrock (you can make your own too). Just take off the hat before eating!

I placed the leprechaun in a green bottle cap as a stand so he wouldn’t tip. Then put it on top of an upside-down green goblet, with a shamrock garland around it. There are many ways you can display them.

Commemorations for March

National Craft Month – Crafts are some of the most popular March senior activities, no matter what the age or ability group. Check out our very popular set of crafts books – Easy Crafts and Gifts. It includes a FREE bonus book of templates to use in projects! Plenty for March senior activities.

We have other ideas on our website too, and many can easily be modified to fit other seasons. So take a look at our “craft central” page at Easy Craft Ideas and see what appeals to you. Lots of ideas for spring!

…A fun group craft activity could be getting inexpensive plain wooden birdhouses, and each group member painting and decorating theirs as desired. Then mount them all onto a long piece of wood and display in a garden area (as shown in the picture at the top of the page).

American Red Cross Month – The Red Cross began in 1906, and President Obama has proclaimed March as the official month to honor the Red Cross. It is actually an international effort with loads of opportunity for volunteer work or ways to raise money to donate to their causes. Add a little good-will to your March senior activities… This is a good time to invite a Red Cross member to come to your group and give a talk about what they do in your area and how you might be able to help. The Red Cross helps with disasters, health and safety, military and their families, blood donations, and many international efforts. Visit their website at www.redcross.org

Kite Month – In many states, March is already a mild month, windy, and perfect for flying kites. If you been cooped up all winter, favorite March senior activities involve finally going outside. You can also have an activity for kite making, and hobby stores have very easy kits. For those who need wheelchairs, kite flying is an opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy this traditional activity.

Women’s History Month – Celebrate the many contributions made by women around the world. And throughout history. Consider a wide variety from Queen Elizabeth I, to Sacajawea, to Betsy Ross, to Harriet Jacobs, to Mme. Curie, to Betsy Ross, to Rosa Parks, plus a wide variety in the entertainment and political worlds. You may find a movie (including from the library) or short biography about their lives to share.

Nutrition Month – Good nutrition is a priority for seniors and elderly. Especially since older folks like to snack rather than eat large meals. Get delicious ideas on our “recipe central” page of easy, healthy recipes; as well as some wonderful healthy snack recipes.

Non-Fiction Reading Month – Some March senior activities can be done inside or out depending on the weather. And reading is one of them. Find out what topics appeal most to your group, and study them for a month with a sort of book club and readings, perhaps along with a short talk, about that topic. Many seniors enjoy reading fiction, but reading nonfiction also keeps the brain alert. Plus it allows readers to expand their knowledge and widen their horizons about the topic they are interested in.

Nonfiction Writing Month – If you have people interested in writing, why not put out a special newsletter for Nonfiction Writing Month featuring articles or stories written by members of your group, for unique March senior activities. Perhaps a unique story about their life, travels, or perspectives. Who knows. It may become popular and turned into a bimonthly or quarterly endeavor.

Poetry Month  – This is an opportunity to celebrate the work of famous poets, but also the poets in your midst. Or, if you have someone with experience in writing poetry, perhaps he/she could give a talk or teach a short seminar on the topic, encouraging the “inner poet” in those who are participating. If you have a group that is very interested in poetry, invite a teacher, professor, etc., to come and give a presentation.

Optimism Month – Who couldn’t use a bit more optimism? (Except possibly Pollyanna — perhaps a good movie to see this month). This month put your March senior activities in happy mode as much as possible. The purpose of an actual Optimist Club (see optimist.org) is to bring out the best in themselves and others, including kids, civic activities, and the government.

Perhaps one of your group had been or is a member of such a club and could give a presentation about it and ideas of what to do during this month. There is the chapter in just about every city internationally, with tens of thousands of volunteers.

On a smaller scale though, put small signs with positive messages on the dining room table(s), and whatever groups you already have going can especially emphasize optimism during this month, especially kind things you can do for each other.

National Peanut Butter Month – Lots of opportunity for yummy peanut butter treats this month – from peanut butter on celery, to cookies, to bars, to cupcakes, to peanut butter on toast, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and let’s not forget peanut butter candies and ice cream treats. Plenty of ideas for every week in the month.
 
Easter – Sometimes Easter is in the month of March. Check your calendar for this date. Easter is a good time for special crafts, including making decorative placemats, napkin holders, and special occasion food.

Dates For March Senior Activities

March 1 – Yellowstone National Park Anniversary – When you want a few March senior activities that can be done indoors, the next few are examples. This is an excellent day to present a slideshow (especially a selection of travel pictures from your group) or documentary about this park. You may know that Yellowstone is actually a giant volcanic crater, which some scientists believe has become slightly active again. There are very interesting documentaries all about this.

March 2 – Dr. Seuss’s Birthday, 1904 – People both young and old love the zany rhymes of Dr. Seuss. Pick a favorite and read it aloud, especially with kids — perhaps “Horton Hatches the Egg,” or “The Cat in the Hat.” Your March senior activities can certainly include children and family. There are also movies based on his stories. Do you know when and how and why he started writing his stories? A wonderful topic to research

March 3  – Alexander Graham Bell birthday, 1847 – What would we do without the telephone! Which of course has now evolved into the cell phone. What a long ways this device has come! Mr. Bell was one of those inventors that never gave up, and his story is fascinating. Some of your group may remember what it was like not to have a phone at all, including in a vacation home, or what it was like to have to call the operator when you wanted to make a phone call. You can have a lively discussion about this, and also about his life.

March 4 – National Anthem Day – “The Star-Spangled Banner” was a poem written in 1814 by Francis Scott Key after watching the British attack Chesapeake Bay. The story is moving, and of course so is the song. Be sure to feature it during this day.

March 5 – National Chocolate Cheesecake Day – Yum! A must to have for dessert or a special party! Find any excuse to have a party for your March senior activities. And we have a fabulous healthy chocolate cheesecake recipe submitted by one of our readers.

March 6 – Artist Michelangelo’s Birthday, 1475 – Michelangelo is one of the world’s most famous Renaissance artists. Almost everyone is familiar with his art. But are you familiar with his life? The life and times during the Renaissance were truly different, and an artist had to be not only talented, but somewhat politically savvy as well. His is an interesting story. You’ll be able to find movies about his life, possibly at the library. This is a good day for an art history presentation, especially with slides. You will be able to find many images from Michelangelo’s art online. It would be stunning if you have a way to project them on a large screen, perhaps during a special lunch or dinner.

March 8 – Farmers Day – Farmers are gearing up for planting season, but many people are unfamiliar with what it really takes to be a farmer. You might have a member of your group who used to be a farmer and who can give a talk about how it used to be and how it is now, including organic farming and non-GMO crops. Or have a local farmer come in.

And be sure to decorate tables with a farm theme and serve some down home cooking. Use farm themes in your arts and crafts too!

March 9 – Harriet Tubman Day – Born in 1812, Harriet was an African American who  lived during the Civil War and who was a famous humanitarian and spy during that time. With great courage she helped save the lives of many slaves, establishing safe houses and helping with the underground railroad. Her story is an exciting one, and worth studying on this day. The times were certainly different in the 1800s!

March 9 – National Crab Meat Day – Even if you do not live near the ocean where crab meat is more readily available, you can get it at the grocery store sometimes fresh or frozen, and certainly canned, which is quite reasonable. If you are looking for easy and healthy crab recipes, check out ideas our readers have submitted – one for crab cakes, and a delicious crispy crab appetizer, on our reader recipe forum at more healthy snack recipes. Another delicious excuse to include food in your March senior activities.

March 13 – Uncle Sam’s Birthday – Do you know where the idea of Uncle Sam came from, and when? Some say it began around 1775 and was mentioned in the lyrics of the Yankee Doodle song, although it’s questionable whether this character was a metaphor or modeled after a real person named Sam. Others say the legend cropped up during the war of 1812 and was named after a Samuel Wilson.

The famous image of Uncle Sam recruiting soldiers began during the Civil War, with his goatee and famous top hat. Look up the history of Uncle Sam and discuss it, or put flyers at your tables.

If you’re looking for craft ideas for your March senior activities, try something patriotic in red white and blue, including decorations, see our 4th of July crafts page.

March 14 – Albert Einstein’s Birthday, 1879 – Perhaps one of the most famous and recognizable scientists, Albert Einstein was a real character. A giant in the world of physics, he developed two important ideas still used in physics today: the general theory of relativity, and the theory of quantum mechanics. Although he was born in Germany, he visited and remained in the United States when Hitler came into power, and became an American citizen.

He is also well known for his pithy quotations. One of my favorites is, “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” You can easily find books and possibly a documentary about Einstein in the library. And most probably one of his famous photos. So celebrate the life and work of this zany scientist!

March 15 – The Ides of March – Julius Caesar was assassinated, 44 BC. This date was actually an important date on the Roman calendar, but became most famous when Julius Caesar was assassinated. You may be familiar with Shakespeare’s famous quote from his play, Julius Caesar: “Beware the Ides of March.” For those interested in history, a review of this event and Caesar’s life can be quite interesting. There is also a film from 1953 and titled Julius Caesar, starring Marlon Brando and Deborah Kerr.

March 17 – St. Patrick’s Day – Most likely your March senior activities include plans for St. Patrick’s Day. But if you’re looking for a cute craft to do too, take a look at our page all about making little leprechauns out of corks. See our page on cork leprechaun craft ideas.

March 20 – First Day of Spring – Yaaay! What do you do to celebrate the first day of spring? A special dessert? Perhaps using edible flower petals? (See our page about edible flower recipes!) A spring related craft? Again, see our main page with easy craft ideas, and find one that you can use or modify for spring.

March 21 – Pizza Day – Always a favorite, pizza can be the regular down-home style that everyone is used to. But why not also offer something a little different? A little gourmet? Perhaps Canadian bacon with melon; or use feta cheese instead of regular; sun dried tomatoes and more unusual vegetables like artichoke, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.. Maybe grilled shrimp; Thai chicken; chicken Alfredo. And do try a whole-grain crust too.

Perhaps a special dessert pizza with apples, almonds, or even chocolate. You might also devise a breakfast style pizza. Mini pizzas can also be made on slices of cucumber, zucchini, or even Triscuits, instead of using a traditional crust. Perfect for appetizers! Another party day for your March senior activities – and you could also include making the pizzas as an activity itself.

March 23 – Liberty Day – Date of Patrick Henry’s famous speech, “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death,” in 1775. This moving speech could be read at a meal time or special snack time. Perhaps have a discussion of what the idea of liberty means now, and is it the same as in former years.

March 26 – Robert Frost’s Birthday, 1874 – This Pulitzer Prize for Poetry winner was from the new England area, and is one of the most familiar poets in America. Add a little literature appreciation to your March senior activities. His poem, Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening, is one of his most famous. It is fairly short and easy to read aloud. Especially coming out of winter, the phrase “the woods are lovely, dark and deep,” are very meaningful.

March 30 – National Hot Dog Day – What do you like to put on a hot dog? Don’t forget to celebrate this food day, complete with a variety of toppings for the hot dogs. Depending on your climate, you may be able to make this into a picnic.

March 30 – Artist Vincent van Gogh’s Birthday, 1853 – As an artist myself, I always loved the art of van Gogh. His story is both inspiring and tragic. This Dutch Post Impressionist painter moved to France where he painted some of his most notable art. You may be familiar with his paintings entitled, “The Starry Night,” or his many paintings with sunflowers.

You may remember the lovely song about van Gogh by musician Don McLean called “Starry Starry Night.” A perfect and moving song to celebrate his birthday. There is also a film from 1956 about his life called, “Lust for Life.”

For the art enthusiasts in your group, add a little creative flair to your March senior activities and have a painting project in which you “reproduce” one of his pieces of art. Or simply get an art book of his work from the library and do a short presentation.

Also see:
To add more fun to your March senior activities…

Perfect Party Theme Ideas – Easy to modify for any season or celebration.
Delicious Healthy Dessert Recipes – A variety of natural dessert recipes perfect for many occasions and celebrations.
Spring Senior Activities — Lots of General activities that can be used throughout the spring season, to add even more possibilities for you.

to Senior Activities – By The Month