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Summer Fun
Rio Nido Roadhouse Pool, Lawn & Outdoor Dancing - all summer long

Old Fashioned Summer Fun
By Vesta Copestakes

This is by no means a complete list of what do and where - but if I just get you thinking this way, you'll have a wonderful time playing in our back yard and feel mightily refreshed by the simplicity of driving only a few miles from home for the kind of fun many people forgot exists!

Here are two web sites that fill in all my empty spaces - there are more - but this will get you started:

Want to be ON the water? Try these:

Burke's Canoes & Kayaks - a ten mile self-guided canoe trip through the Redwoods with return shuttle included. Riverside camping & kayaks also available. $59 for a 4 to 5 hour pleasure trip. No Dogs! Mirabel Road at 8600 River Road, Forestville CA (707) 887-1222,

Rivers Edge Kayak and Canoe Trips - 3 self guided trips to choose from... remote enough for great wildlife viewing. Rates from $15 an hour to$85 a day - 7 options to choose from. 13840 Healdsburg Ave., Healdsburg CA (800) 345-0869,

SOAR Russian River Adventures - Eight miles of the Russian River that is very secluded. Toddler & Dog and friendly. $45/adult, $22 children, $10/dog, group rates.
20 Healdsburg Ave., Healdsburg CA
(707) 433-5599 -

King's Sport & Tackle offers Canoe & Kayak rentals, fishing gear - you name it - THE outdoor sport place to shop! - 6258 Main St., Guerneville, CA 95446, (707) 869-2156 -

Russian River Outfitters - Complete line of rental boats and equipment. Several launch and pick-up points along the Lower Russian River. 25375 Steelhead Blvd, Duncans Mills, CA 95430, 707-865-9080,

Bodega Bay Kayak - Meet the seals of the lower Russian River Near Jenner at the entrance to the sea. No experience necessary. Located in the Bodega Bay Surf Shack, 1580 East Shore Drive, Blue Whale Shopping Center, Bodega Bay, CA(707) 875-8899 or (707) 875-3944

Want to be IN the water? Try these:

Rio Nido Road House Pool - Open to the Public from 11:30am to 5:30 pm. Life Guards on Duty. Season passes by week, month or season - or $6.00 day passes. Call for group rates. Wonderful lawn for relaxing - big pool and kid pool. Very family-oriented. Every Friday & Saturday night they feature live bands on the stage behind the Roadhouse - good food and the kind of atmosphere that makes your heart relax enough have a really good time. Brad & Lee Anne's little bit of heaven. Good Food, too! 14540 Canton Two, Ro Nido, 707-869-0821,

Russian River Beaches - there are more than just the official ones owned and operated by Sonoma County Regional Parks. Find a large group of cars parked along River Road and follow the paths - or - go to the Regional Parks web site for details on their beaches: Monte Rio has a wonderful beach with a parking lot across from the Rio Theater - lifeguards - the whole bit - good food vendor as well! And Guerneville has Johnsons Beach where they put up a temporary dam for the summer to create a large swimming area free from river current. My favorite - Steelhead beach in Forestville where the river widens and slows. Ah!

Just Wanna have Fun?

Pee Wee Golf - Arcade & Bike Rentals - all summer from 11am to 10pm, Sundays 'til 6pm. Fun since 1948! Guerneville's 36-hole Pee Wee Golf from the mind of artist Lee Koplin, located on the south side of the Guerneville Bridge at the entrance to Pocket Canyon. Lovingly restored by owners Tom & Vanessa Glover and a gaggle of volunteers 16155 Drake Road, Guerneville, CA 95446, 707-869-9321

Rio Theater in Monte Rio at the Y in 116. This place is an experience as well as a totally delightful place to watch a movie. Even the food is good with exceptional toppings for popcorn, hot herbal tea - you can actually spend an entire evening here and just relax. Very sweet! Check out what's playing at their web site or call to hear the message. Come by any time for hot dogs and ice cream. If the front door is open - come on in. Don's Dogs Café is at the back for full fare and a lovely deck all day until 4pm. 707-765-0913, 20396 Bohemian Hwy, Monte Rio,

Jazz on the River - no, this is not the Russian River Jazz Festival - it's more intimate than that by far. From Noon until 4pm on Sundays, find your way to the Village Inn in Monte Rio, lounge on the lawn by the river, enjoy scrumptious food and listen to local jazz bands. Sunday doesn't get any better than this! Village Inn, 20822 River Blvd., Monte Rio, 707-865-2304,

That's all for now - just a taste - the rest is up to you!

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