With weeks of summer break ahead, the backpacks have been put away and homework's on hold.
Now what? Well, it's clearly time to get to work on that sand bucket list.
On your mark, get set, play!
Black Diamond Mines
Rich in history, this former mining district spreads out more than 6,000 acres, giving you options aplenty -- hiking, running and picnicking. Also on the list, naturalist-led programs include details about the preserve's natural resources and historic back stories. There's even a small camping area for just $5 a person. 5175 Somersville Road, Antioch. Parking is $5. Info: 510-544-2750; www.ebparks.org/parks/black_diamond
Looking for some fun under the guise of exercise? Then head to a local alley and snag a lane. Not only can you have fun in a comfortably cool setting, you don't have to break the bank. And, bonus: There are lots of little summer deals for students. Info: Delta Bowl in Antioch, 3300 Delta Fair Blvd., 925-757-5424; and Harvest Bowl in Brentwood, 5000 Balfour Ave., 925-516-1221.
Contra Loma Regional Park
You get big bang for your buck at this spot, which includes hiking trails, a fishing hole, a fabulous swim-and-grass area and the option of bringing your own food. The 780 acres allows an up-close peek at local nature. 1200 Frederickson Lane, Antioch.
A date with skates
Whether quads, in-line or boards is how you roll, there are several options out here. There are two skating rinks in Antioch. Paradise Skate at 1201 W. 10th St.; 925- 779-0200; $9, or $5 for Wednesdays and Thursdays. Call for the variety of skating times.
There's also Antioch Indoor Sports Center, 1210 Sunset Ave.; 925-778-6363; $9/$10, 12:30-6 p.m. Saturdays. Then there's the outdoor Brentwood Skate Park, 195 Griffith Lane; 925-516-5444; call for hours.
Free city summer concerts
Downtown Antioch plays host to concerts from 6-8 p.m. Saturdays in July and August at Waldie Plaza. A kickoff show runs 6-8 p.m. June 30 at the Antioch Historical Society museum, 1500 W. 4th St. Info: 925-325-9897.
Brentwood features its Starry Nights series at 7 p.m. Fridays at the renovated City Park, 710 2nd St. Info: 925-516-5444.
Prewett Water Park
This place features five separate pools, five slides and an area just for the little ones. It also includes picnic areas and sand volleyball courts. No outside food is allowed, but the park features two concession stands. 4701 Lone Tree Way, Antioch. Hours: 11 a.m.-6 p.m. daily through Sept. 3. Cost: $14 for weekends and holidays; $12 weekdays and $5 for after 4 p.m. Info: 925-776-3070; www.ci.antioch.ca.us/CitySvcs/Prewett/
Small World Park
One of the best little secrets in East County, this sweet park offers a handful of rides, including a charming carousel and Ferris wheel. It also boasts several play structures and picnic areas. You can even rent the castle or fort area for parties. Geared for younger ones, it's a bargain to boot. 2551 Harbor St., Pittsburg. Hours: 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Thursdays-Sundays through Aug. 21; weekends only Aug. 21-Oct. 30. Cost: $2 for 14 and under and 55 and older; $4 for 15 years and up. Info: 925-439-4879.
Sullenberger Swim Center
Three hot summers have passed, but Sullenberger Swim Center is now reopened and ready to cool down residents. Built in 1976, the community pool was shut down in 2009 for renovation, including fence upgrades and concrete deck resurfacing. Through July 1, the pool's open from noon-5 p.m. weekends; and July 4-Aug. 22 from noon-5 p.m. Wednesdays-Sundays. 4150 Harbor St., Pittsburg. Cost: $3 for under 18; $5 for adults. Info: 925-439-4841.
More, more, more
Don't forget there are oodles of classes and camps offered through city park and rec departments. Antioch, 925-779-7023; Brentwood, 925-516-5444; Oakley, 925-625-7000; Pittsburg, 925-252-4000.
Note that Oakley celebrates its cityhood anniversary this weekend with a variety of events and fireworks.
Contact Trine Gallegos at firstname.lastname@example.org.