Where to Go for Affordable Fun in Southern California – Lake Arrowhead
Now that the chill of winter seems safely behind us, it’s time to strategize about how to enjoy the warm summer months ahead. You could always go to the desert, but it’s unbelievably hot there. So, unless you’re running from your air conditioned car to a well-cooled building, the fun will be in short supply. There is also always the beach.
However, unless you love fighting the crowds and paying an exorbitant fee to park, May through September at the coast may not offer much of a break from the stresses of everyday life. Other options you can safely check off of your list because of cost and crowds include amusement parks, malls and museums. Is there anywhere to turn in the summer of 2013?
The San Bernardino Mountains! Just a stone’s throw from the sweltering valley below, Lake Arrowhead and surrounding communities are located off of Highway 18. Have you spent much time in the mountains? From Crestline to Running Springs and lots of spaces in between, there are plenty of great places to take your family. Here are just a few:
Crestline: Lake Gregory Regional Park features a public lake. So you can enjoy the beach with your kids and play in the water or take a ride down the water slide. Since it is located near the entrance to the lake communities, San Moritz, Crest Park and Cedar Pines Park are beautiful places to take in the mountain scenery and chill.
Blue Jay: Further up the hill will take you into the quaint community of Blue Jay…named for birds that frequent the area. In Blue Jay, you’ll find a few cute shops, a public library and a movie theater which showcases first-run 2D and 3D films.
Lake Arrowhead (The jewel of Southern California): Nestled halfway between Running Springs to the south and Lake Gregory to the north, Lake Arrowhead is freeway close, directly up Highway 18 to Highway. If you follow Highway 173 from the Rim of the World Highway (aka The Rim), it will take you right into what many refer to as the Swiss Alps of Southern California: Lake Arrowhead Village.
Nestled in the beauty of the woods, boasting the charm of Swiss chalets, while offering a variety of modern amenities, Lake Arrowhead Village offers an assortment of quaint specialty shops, as well as well-stocked outlet stores such as: Jockey, Bass, Famous Footwear, and Coach—among others. So bring your family and plan to stay for the entire weekend.
This summer, there are lots of great things to do in Lake Arrowhead Village:
- Farmer’s Market every Friday until October 25, from 2 p.m.-8 p.m.
- Free Summer Concerts every Friday and Saturday night and on Sundays during holiday weekends. Most concerts start at 6:30 p.m.
- The annual Antique and Wooden Boat Show will be hosted by the Rim of the World Historical Society on Saturday, June 9 from 9am to 4pm & Sunday, June 10 from 9am to noon.
- Boat Rides on the Arrowhead Queen. Experience the beauty and excitement of a narrated tour of Lake Arrowhead. The splendor and serenity of lush forests, sparkling water and blue skies glide by, as you sit back and enjoy close-up views of exquisite lakefront homes and learn about the fascinating history of the lake.
- Breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner dockside at Belgian Waffle Works. With great food and a wonderful lakefront view, our dining room and patio are the perfect place to relax and enjoy any summer day. Our summer hours start this weekend, as does our delicious seasonal menu and refreshing passion iced tea. Even if you aren’t hungry for a large meal, you can come by and toss back a cold one or savor a mixed drink. We serve a wide variety of wine and beer as well as specialty drinks to compliment our full menu. And if you have dietary concerns, just tell your waiter or waitress. We have tasty gluten-free and vegetarian options.
- Feed the Ducks. After your meal, pick up a bag or two of duck food and saunter over to the public docks to feed the local fowl.
- Lollipop Park sits right on the edge of the lake. So, while your little ones enjoy bumper cars, the carousel or the miniature golf course, you can sit back and relax.
Running Springs & Green Valley Lake: Located at the top of Highway 330, Running Springs is a small town with lots of beautiful trees and rock formations. In the winter, you can bring the kids up to go tubing at Snow Drift or, for serious snow bunnies, head to Snow Valley to ski. Summer offers beauty of an entirely different sort. Your family will love taking advantage of the hiking trails available at the National Forest Association’s Children’s Forest. In Green Valley Lake, you can pay for a day pass and fish or swim or even rent a boat.
Belgian Waffle Works is a full-service family restaurant located “dockside” at Lake Arrowhead Village since 1982, Featuring 17 original specialty Belgian-style waffles, homemade soups, fresh market salads, gourmet sandwiches, juicy certified Angus beef burgers with homemade buns, Espresso,Cappuccino’s, premium desserts, wine, beer, specialty drinks and more. Belgian Waffle Works waffles are made from an exclusive mix, which is available for sale onsite and online at www.belgianwaffle.comCome join us to celebrate any holiday for breakfast, lunch or dinner. You’ll be glad you did!