19Do you remember your childhood summers? No school, beautiful weather and lots of fun. We usually went to the beach, spent days riding bikes, playing ball and fishing. Summer fun doesn’t have to end just because we grow up and have jobs and responsibilities. Here’s some bucket list and staycation ideas to help you enjoy summer at home.
Get your adrenaline fix.
Major adrenaline junkies will love ZipQuest. It’s a zip line and canopy tour at 533 Carvers Fall Road in Fayetteville. Visitors here enjoy nature and view a waterfall while zipping through the trees. I can attest from personal experience that this is VERY fun. For more information, call 910-488-8787 or visit www.zipquest.com.
You can take it up another notch at Paraclete. Located at 143 Airport Road in nearby Raeford, Paraclete offers a wind tunnel and tandem skydiving. While this may sound like an adult activity, did you know indoor skydiving is family-friendly for all ages? Those not quite up for these adventures can view the activities from an observation deck. For more information, visit https://skydiveparacletexp.com/ or call 910-904-0000.
Root, root, root for the home team!
The Fayetteville Woodpeckers are a single-A baseball affiliate of the Houston Astros. The team plays at the state-of-the-art Segra Stadium located at 460 Hay Street. In addition to enjoying a baseball game, Woodpeckers guests can take advantage of special promotions and giveaways, fireworks after some games, batting cages and other special events throughout the year. For more information, visit www.milb.com/fayetteville or call 910-339-1989.
Go on a “play” date.
Cape Fear Regional Theatre, located at 1209 Hay Street, provides top-quality live theater productions several times a year, children’s theater, camps and acting classes. Community theater offers a place to come together to laugh harder, think deeper, share our experiences and grow closer. For more information, visit www.cfrt.org/, email info@cfrt.org, or call 910-323-4233.
The Gilbert Theater, founded in 1994, offers contemporary and classical theater productions in a more intimate setting. The theater is located at 116 Green Street in the second floor of the Fascinate-U Children’s Museum Building. For more information, visit www.gilberttheater.com.
Sweet Tea Shakespeare is an acting troupe that offers a unique twist on the plays of Shakespeare. The group occasionally features other productions, such as musicals and concerts with shows in Fayetteville and Raleigh. For tickets and more information, visit https://sweetteashakespeare.com/
Play a round.
Pinehurst gets all the glory, but with the weather allowing for year-round golf, our community boasts many premier golf courses. In Fayetteville and the surrounding area, link lovers enjoy Gates Four, Baywood, Kings Grant, Highland, Cypress Lakes, Lakewood, Coharie, Timberlake and Vineyard Golf Courses. Most courses also have a Twilight league and a women’s league. Some courses are private and most require reservations, so call ahead to reserve a tee time.
If you’re more of a putter than a long-game golfer, Fayetteville also has several mini-golf locations. Putt-Putt, founded in Fayetteville, operates on Hope Mills Road at the Putt Putt Fun Center and has two authentic Putt-Putt® Golf courses that are 36 holes of par 2 competition or just plain fun!
Mountasia and Pirate Black Light Golf are at the Omni Family Amusement Center on Sycamore Dairy Road. Mountasia has two 18-hole courses, while Pirate Black Light Golf is indoors and played, you guessed it, in black light.
Relax under the stars.
Located on the corner of Rowan Street and Ray Avenue, Festival Park hosts concerts, festivals and other events throughout the year. The Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra will play an Independence Day concert on July 4th with fireworks afterward. Even better, it’s free!
Did you know we have a planetarium on the campus of Fayetteville State University? Check it out for an adventure out of this world —and galaxy! Public viewings happen on Saturdays for a nominal fee, and other special events throughout the year. For more information, visit www.uncfsu.edu/community/planetarium.
Sweet treats and cool confections
Keep trying to satisfy the often-unsatiable sweet tooth at these spots.
Mad Hatters Ice Cream Shop at 1405 Hope Mills Road offers a variety of ice cream flavors made in-house with natural fruits and pulps. Enjoy the stationary flavor always on the menu, such as White Rabbit and Cheshire Cat or one of the four flavors that rotate frequently. Enjoy a sweet treat and their cotton candy art in an environment of happiness, creativity and fun.
Sunset Slush of Fayetteville recently relocated to 3712 Ramsey Street. The new storefront sells various flavors of traditional Sunset Slush, an Italian ice treat. The slushies are described as “smooth, nutritious, thirst-quenching, dairy-free, low in calories, cholesterol-free, gluten-free and refreshing.” You can mix and match flavors however you wish.
Fill your appetite; quench your thirst.
You don’t have to drive to Raleigh or Charlotte for a relaxing time in an elegant environment with a great meal and extensive wine and bar menu. Fayetteville has plenty of locally owned restaurants and breweries that are great for a night out, including Luigi’s Italian Chophouse on McPherson Church Road, Chris’s Steak House on Raeford Road, and Elizabeth Pizza in Hope Mills.
For a more laid-back time, Dirtbag Ales Brewery and Taproom has it all. Found at 5435 Corporation Dr, Hope Mills at Exit 41 off I-95, Dirtbag is a family- and pet-friendly place that has craft beer, local NC Wine and Cider on tap, non-alcoholic beverages, playground, a dog park, an onsite restaurant, frequent food trucks and weekly events!
Go jump in a lake.
Lake Rim, 1455 Hoke Loop Road, Fayetteville, prohibits swimming but fishing, kayaking and canoeing are encouraged. Playgrounds and a hiking trail are an excellent addition to the day at the lake.
Smith Lake is open only to Department of Defense ID cardholders and up to four of their guests. Located on Fort Liberty off I-295 and Smith Lake Road, this lake is a great day trip to enjoy the beach area and aqua park with an inflatable in-water obstacle course, kayaks, stand-up paddle boards and pedal boats.

Editor's Note: This article, written by Lisa Blauser, originally ran in the July 2023 edition of Women's View magazine. It has been edited to reflect the current businesses in Fayetteville.

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