Summer fun in Fluvanna

By Page H. Gifford

There is a lot happening in Fluvanna County this summer. For anyone new to the area and wondering what activities are available for families, kids, or adults, check online at There is always something for everyone from a dog park at Pleasant Grove to training classes at The Dog Spot. 

Seniors can also gather at one of four senior centers throughout the county and participate in fun activities.

If you like basketball, or the latest trend in keeping fit for adults, pickleball, then the Open Gym is an option. The gym at Carysbrook is free and open certain times for these activities and everyone is welcome. It’s a great way for adults to stay active and make friends.

Kayaking on the Rivanna river or at Lake Monticello is now available. Learning the basics and safety of kayaking teaches novices how to stay afloat and enjoy the natural resources in the county.

New this year is the runner’s clinic at Pleasant Grove for ages 18+ to be held on July 22, from 2-4 p.m. for beginner to intermediate runners. This program is for avid runners or those motivated to run, who are looking for off-season training for upcoming events. The discussion will focus on training plans, equipment, and industry trends.

There are always many youth programs throughout the summer featuring sports, art, horseback riding, and day trips. New for youth is mountain biking at Pleasant Grove for ages 10+ beginner – intermediate, on July 22, 2-4 p.m. This is for anyone interested in the trail system and learning or fine-tuning their basic riding skills. Participants must have their own bikes and helmets.

If you haven’t tried disc golf, Pleasant Grove has a disc golf course. Or how about a quiet evening under the stars? Each month, a Friday evening is set aside for star gazing, beginning at Pleasant Grove. The next event will be on July 22 followed by two more in August and September. Onlookers will spend the evening observing and identifying celestial events. Meeting times may vary. If you have telescopes or sky binoculars bring them along and for those who want to use their cell phones, there is an app at no cost for Apple and Android. Apple’s program is Sky Guide and Android is Sky View. To use these free apps, register in advance at

Master Naturalists has begun its summer programs with trail walks through the summer blooms and wooded areas to see how nature and wildlife behave during the warmer months of the year. Participants will see a new project underway during the Aug. 5 walk – the removal of the invasive Ailanthus trees to help prevent the spread of the Spotted Lantern Fly, a serious threat to fruit crops and vineyards. On Sept. 2 summer comes to a close with late bloomers and wildflowers, which provide sustenance to pollinators. Also, learn how the park manages its meadow habitats, including the use of controlled burns, a method once used by Native Americans.

Other areas of the county are still offering fun activities for kids. Empowered Players, known for its theater camps during the summers at Carysbrook Performing Arts Center, begins its season in June with Tech Theater Camp and a Musical Camp but there are still camps open in July for those with a creative mind who would like to learn about theater.

New this year is Kids Night Out and the last one will be July 14, from 5-8 p.m. The program is designed to bring kids in the community together for a fun-filled evening of arts and crafts, karaoke, theater games, movies, and much more.

EP All Stars is back this year.  Kids in grades 8-12 will learn about intensive acting, Shakespeare, and the short version of his classic play Macbeth. This camp is designed for kids ages 8+ with or without disabilities learning and growing together. They will learn acting and tech skills and writing. For those who love theater and want to sharpen their theater skills yet loosen up, and have fun, Improv A-Palooza returns by popular demand. For more information and registration visit

At the Fluvanna County Library, there is always something going on. In  August, weather permitting, on Tuesdays from 9:30-10:30 a.m., toddlers through kindergarten kids are welcome to come and have fun outside with messy crafts or sensory bin play along with a themed story. On Fridays from 10-10:30 a.m., preschoolers can enjoy songs on the porch along with stories. For more information about these and other activities contact the library at

For more information about activities, visit the Fluvanna County Parks and Recreation website at or pick up their 2023 summer program guide.

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