The origin of picnicking is thought to be the elaborate hunting camp meals prepared for wealthy Europeans dating back to the middle ages. Domestic staffs would follow their lords into the wild with fine linens and china and serve the caught meat on tables within large fabric draped tents or in the open field. The word,”Picnic’ began life as a “17th-century French verbage , and it was likely invented by joining the common form of the word ‘piquer’ (meaning “to pick” or “peck”) and a nonsense rhyming syllable coined to fit the first half of this new palate-pleaser.” http://www.picnicworld.net/picnic-information-19.html The term picnic migrated to the English language in about 1800 and the colonist brought the word and practice to America shortly after that. Large traditional American picnics were potlucks where all people attending were expected to bring something to add to the outdoor meal. Often story tellers would entertain, music would be heard, and people would participate in group folk dances.
People do not picnic as much as they use to, but it is a FUN family activity and Pottstown has some great parks for this traditional summer activity. For a nice shaded pavilion head to Memorial Park off of Manatawny and King Streets where the kids can also play in the spray park or the family can take a walk on the nice paved path down by the creek. Another good spot is Tow Path Park where Dad can grill the meal on one of the community bbq grills. Tow Path is also a fishing zone and a boat launching area into the Schuylkill River. To get there by car take Rt 100 North to Rt 724 East, and is a few minutes down on the left hand side at Old Schuylkill Rd. The final recommended spot is Heather Place Park which is located a few minutes past Target, on the left hand side up Route 100 North, and the address 1420 Heather Place, Pottstown, PA 19464. This park also has a large shaded Pavillion, lots of maintained play ground equipment, and a basketball court.
If you go to a location without a play ground then take easily portable games like jump rope, a lawn bowling set, or hoola hoops. Families can also play tag football or a game of hide and seek!
A yummy recipe which kids can help prepare is:
Freshly Made Picnic Popsicles:
1 box (4 oz) of sugar free cherry gelatin (or other delicious flavor)
1 tsp lemon juice
1 8 oz tub of light whipping cream (or make your own if so inclined)
1 can of Apple Cherry juice concentrate (feel free to use any flavor your heart desires)
1 Cup boiling water
1 Cup cold water
Place cherry gelatin in medium bowl. Add 1 cup boiling water and stir 2 minutes until gelatin is completely dissolved. Add enough ice cubes to 1 cup cold water to make 2 cups cold water. Add to gelatin and stir until ice cubes are completely dissolved. Pour evenly into 16 plastic cups or popsicle mold. (I used huge wide cups and the popsicles were a little too big. 5 oz cups would have been much better.) Add about 1/4 cup to each cup and freeze for 1 hour.
Slice 3 bananas and add bananas and lemon juice to whip cream. Spoon mixture onto frozen gelatin in cups. Stick plastic spoons or popsicle sticks into center of each cup and freeze for another hour. Top off with juice and freeze for an additional 4 hours or overnight.
To remove pops from cups place bottom of cups under warm running water and press firmly on bottom of cup.
Remember picnics are an easy and
affordable active family outing! SO
GO PICKNICKING NEXT