Father’s Day is this weekend and instead of the tacky tie or discount power tools or new grilling tongs and apron, get your dad something that will make him truly happy: experiences. Science actually says spending money on experiences provides much more happiness than purchasing material things, and you know we can't argue with science. (Wait, no, I know, I know. You CAN argue with science. It doesn't mean you should argue with science). But okay, so maybe tee time at UNC Finley Golf Course is a little ambitious for a casual afternoon with dad and maybe you can't exactly afford a vacation to Hawaii, but here are a few ideas of affordable experiences in the Triangle for you to get out in nature with your “old man” and have a Father’s Day to remember:
1. Mountain biking at Shearon Harris
Harris Lake county park has several mountain bike trails that cater to beginner and intermediate skills, and is a great way to careen around with good ol' Dad in the great outdoors.
2. Disc golfing at Cornwallis
Cornwallis Road Park in Durham offers a disc golf course that is popular with locals. With shorter holes it's easier to grab a couple versatile discs and just spend a couple leisurely hours with dad.
3. Fishing at Falls Lake
Falls Lake is a favorite among anglers, and for good reason. Kick back and relax with dad on the water with a few lines in the lake and just let the lazy day roll by.
4. Camping at Jordan Lake
Who can resist a quiet overnight at lake's edge? Be extra nice to dad and pack some of his favorite camping snacks.
5. Hiking Eno River
You know how much Durhamites love the Eno River? Lots. Lots and lots and lots. Just watch out for crowds - during the hot summer it's a favorite watering hole.
6. Paddling Neuse River
Prefer to see the world via paddle power instead of pedal power? Neuse River has several launch sites, and if you don't have a kayak or canoe readily available you can easily rent one from any number of local outfitters.
7. Trail running in Umstead State Park
Who doesn't love Umstead State Park? Popular for trail running, it's a great retreat for any urban dwellers seeking a refuge.
8. Strolling through Duke Gardens or Duke Forest
Gorgeous? Yes. Easier on the knees than more strenuous activities? Oh yes. Accessible to fabulous Durham restaurants? Oh very much yes. Go ahead and put this in the win column.