Secret Supper: Limited tickets available and they're going fast.

Night moves: outdoor fun after dark

The first day of summer is less than a month away — a blessing for outdoor enthusiasts up North, a curse for us. A bicycle ride or kayak trip isn't much fun when you're dodging afternoon thunderstorms or slogging through 100 percent humidity.

But there is a way to keep your cool: Wait until the sun goes down to head outside. There are plenty of local opportunities for hikers, bikers and others to do it in the dark over the summer months.

Other pluses: Waterways and roads are less crowded. The season's unpredictable and sometimes violent weather usually calms down after sunset. And the after-work hours often jibe better with people's busy schedules.

It's also "a chance to see your city in a whole new way," said Kathryn Moore, manager of Broward B-cycle, a bike sharing concession with pick-up stations across east Broward County.

Here are some outdoor activities with evening options.


What could be more wild than bobbing on inky waters atop a paddleboard, surrounded by an eerie circle of neon?

That's how Precision Paddleboards' Josh Vajda describes the ride on a NightSUP, his custom-designed paddleboards rimmed with LED lights.

"It's a completely different experience being on the water at night," Vajda says. "It's peaceful. You get to see a lot more."

And you get to avoid being out in the grueling sun during the day.

Precision Paddleboards in Fort Lauderdale started with occasional evening tours on the lighted boards last fall, but Vajda anticipates summer will be the peak season and soon will begin offering trips almost every evening.

Most of the trips depart from Esplanade Park, 400 SW Second St., although other locations can be arranged. Price is $50 per person, and no paddleboarding experience is required.

Info: 877-954-4787,


Summer is the perfect time to add amateur astronomy to your outdoor skill set.

The Fox Observatory at Markham Park (16001 W. State Road 84, Sunrise, 954-357-8868) is a great place for newcomers to lift their eyes to the skies. The nonprofit South Florida Amateur Astronomers Association, which runs the facility, has public viewings from dusk until midnight every Saturday.

The observatory houses several large telescopes, including a pair of Schmidt-Cassegrains, a Brandon Refractor, and three Dobson Reflectors.

Members often set up their own equipment as well, and are happy to share their knowledge with newbies. The viewing is free but the weekend park admission fee of $1.50 per person, $8 maximum per car, may apply.

Info:, 954-384-0442


Night biking is flourishing in South Florida, with informal weekly rides that draw 80 people or more. The popular BiciHangeo trip in Fort Lauderdale, which usually meets 8 p.m. every Wednesday at Cooley's Landing Marina (450 SW Seventh Ave.), is a casual 10 miles to the beach and back for all types of bikes and abilities. No fees, no rules, although you'll need a front and rear light. Helmets optional for adults, but preferred.

More serious cyclists may enjoy the Boca Urban Double, a 20- to 35-mile trip for moderate to fast riders. The group meets 7 p.m. Wednesdays in the Costco parking lot, 17800 Congress Ave., Boca Raton. Other after-dark cycling outings can be found in Pompano Beach, Hollywood and south Palm Beach County.

Info: for Broward; for rides that include Palm Beach County

No wheels? Rent a bike at any of B-cycle's automated locations as late as midnight. Rates vary from $5 for a 30-minute ride to $45 for a one-year pass (some extra fees may apply).

Info:, 754-200-5672

Nature walking

June and July are peak months for a South Florida phenomenon you usually can only see in the dark: sea turtles nesting in the sand.

Environmentalists urge nature lovers to go on organized beach turtle walks rather than venturing out onto the sand themselves, as they may disturb egg-laying females or step on nests.

Several South Florida nature centers and organizations offer them: go to and click on "walks" on the lefthand side for a tri-county list. There may be a charge; reservations are required. And sorry, these trips often fill up fast.

Even if you get shut out of turtle trips, there still are other ways to check out nightlife in the wild. Two Broward County parks continue evening hikes into the summer: Long Key Nature Center (3501 SW 130th Ave., Davie, 954-357-8797) and Tree Tops Park (3900 SW 100th Ave., Davie, 954-357-5130).

Both will host nature walks next month from 8-9 p.m.: Long Key on June 7, Tree Tops on June 8. Long Key also will offer a Sunset Solstice Hike at 6:30 p.m. June 21, venturing off the trail into areas normally closed to the public. Cost is $5 per person for the Long Key and Tree Tops hikes, $10 per person for the Sunset Solstice hike.

Info: For a complete schedule and details, call the parks.

Copyright © 2017, South Florida