Big, White, Puffy Clouds
One Summer, I drove to the Hamptons every weekend, holy cow was that a lot of driving. I grew up 30 minutes from a beach, so I wasn't too keen on it. People in New York do it every Summer, each weekend though. Once you arrive, the beaches are gorgeous. Barbara Kopple's documentary, The Hamptons, back in 2001, exposed the drunken' debauchery that can go on and how "share houses" ruined a lot of it. Aside from this, there are plenty of beaches, boat piers, restaurants and shopping to keep anyone entertained, not just the party people. Fire Island and Shelter Island are equally amazing New York beaches. For more, check out this link: Gothamist.
Everyone has their favorite things to do in the Summer. Mine include going to PS1 in Long Island City for Warm Up, a 17-year-running music series (the line-up is being announced today), going for a drive to the country in northern Westchester, soaking up history in the Berkshires, hanging out on main street in Greenwich, chillen' with the hippies in Woodstock and heading to the beaches of Cape Cod and Nantucket.
The beach, road-trips, pools, parks are all amazing; however, a backyard barbecue with great company, good food and music, becomes a very local paradise. When sensory overload kicks in, the simple acts of gardening or evening walks can become the most enjoyable Summer activity there is, as all we really need is a hot sun and puffy clouds. Cicadas and fire-flies, I'm eagerly awaiting your arrivals....