Just because a big trip isn’t in the cards doesn’t mean you can’t have a pleasure-packed Spring Break with your family this season. Make the most of your time off together with these ideas, all easy to pull off with limited planning.


You can fake a beach day even if you’re nowhere near a seaside destination. Locate your nearest body of water, whether that’s a lake, waterpark or even an indoor pool at the park district or YMCA. Load up an oversized tote bag with towels, toys and snacks, and don’t forget the SPF if you’ll be under the sun.

What to wear: A swimsuit, your favorite cover-up, wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses and sandals.


Be a tourist in your own town and spend a day at a museum. If you’ve visited your major metropolitan museum umpteen times, look for a smaller one within driving distance that has a regional or topical focus. You’d be surprised how many smaller towns have history museums that could teach you and your kiddos something new (or old, rather) about your hometown’s past.

What to wear: A drapey cardigan, cotton tank, jeans and walkable flats or sneakers.


Pop some popcorn or order a pizza and gather the whole family for an all-day film fest right in your living room. Start early and make your way through multi-movie series such as “Harry Potter,” “Toy Story,” “Back to the Future” or “The Hunger Games.” Or pick a theme for a double feature, such as toys (“The Lego Movie” and “G.I. Joe”), dinosaurs (“Land Before Time” and “Jurassic Park”) or dance (“Center Stage” and “Save the Last Dance”).

What to wear: A cozy hooded sweatshirt, leggings and slippers.


Give back to your community by volunteering as a family. Contacting a local volunteer organization for suggestions on a one-day opportunity such as assisting at a local senior center or animal shelter. Or lead your kids in collecting pantry goods or unused clothing and toys that are still in good condition to donate to a local organization.

What to wear: A lightweight blouse, skinny jeans and booties.