5 Things to Do During Summer

Via offers some suggestions to prepare for the summer.

Dress up your patriotic pooch on July 4, but keep him safe and secure at home.

Rachel Gulotta Photography / Stocksy

Have a great summer—after tackling these warm-weather chores. When you’re done, fireworks and french fries await.

  1. Protect your pet. The Fourth of July is fun for human revelers, but the bright lights and loud noises can frighten animals. Reduce the chance your dog or cat will stress out and run away by keeping them indoors and closing all the windows.

  2. Cool your ride. It’s road trip season! Ahead of your next adventure, minimize complications by having your mechanic top off your car’s coolant, check its battery life, and test the AC’s fuses and blower motor.

  3. Mind your speed. School resumes in August, meaning more children will be using the sidewalks and crosswalks. Make note of the school zones along your routes, and obey the posted speed limits. For information on the AAA School Safety Patrol program, go to

  4. Inspect your deck. Before firing up the barbecue, take an honest look at your deck. Sprinkle water on the wood: If it soaks in instead of beading up, it’s time to reseal, which protects from both rain and sun. Need help? AAA Oregon and Idaho members get 5 percent off Househappy, a home-upkeep concierge service. Find details at Members in California's Bay Area can sign up for AAA House Manager services at

  5. Eat your spuds. Aug. 19 is National Potato Day, and it’s the perfect excuse for indulging in french fries, Tater Tots, and loaded skins. Get recommendations for delicious dishes around the West, such as the nuestras bravas at Portland tapas spot Ataula, at

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