The first official day of summer is June 21 which is just days away. The season is a great opportunity for people to get outside and be active. Sunlight allows the body to naturally produce vitamin D which is necessary for overall health. Not only does it aid in strong bones, but it also helps your muscles, heart, lungs and brain function properly.

“Recent research is now showing that vitamin D may be important in preventing and treating a number of serious long-term health problems,” states the Vitamin D Council website at

The Vitamin D Council is a registered nonprofit organization based in California that educates people about vitamin D and safe sun exposure.

“If your body doesn’t get enough vitamin D to keep it healthy, this is called vitamin D deficiency. Severe vitamin D deficiency can sometimes cause a condition called rickets in children and a condition called osteomalcia in adults. Both of these conditions cause soft, thin, and brittle bones,” stated the Vitamin D Council website.

People looking for ideas on how to get outdoors this summer to enjoy the sun don’t have to look very far. Not only does a hopefully sunny season await in June but so does the start of several recreational activities alongside the Schuylkill River Trail.

A mobile pop-up beer garden series called Trails on Tap is coming to the area for the first time this summer beginning on June 26. The new series is a partnership between the Schuylkill River Greenways National Heritage Area, FCM Hospitality, the creators of Philadelphia’s successful “Parks on Tap” series, and Mainstay Independent Brewing Company. During the six-week event, a beer garden will travel to different locations along the Schuylkill River and will incorporate several outdoor fitness activities.

Trails on Tap Schedule & Locations

• June 26 – June 30: Pottstown Riverfront Park

• July 3 – July 7 & July 10 – July 14: Valley Forge National Historical Park

• July 17 – July 21 & July 24 – July 28: Royersford Riverfront

• July 31 – Aug. 4: Norristown Riverfront Park

“The goal of Trails on Tap and the corresponding recreational opportunities is to bring residents and visitors to the Schuylkill River Trail and the Schuylkill River to help them discover and embrace these extraordinary amenities,” said Schuylkill River Greenways NHA Executive Director Elaine Paul Schaefer.

Below are several ways people can have some fun in the sun this summer through fitness opportunities part of the Trails on Tap series.


Schuylkill River Greenways will offer free kayaking and bicycling opportunities every weekend of Trails on Tap from 2 to 5 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. People will be able to borrow a bike from Riverbend Cycles or use a kayak through Take It Outdoors Adventures. Only individuals who haven’t consumed alcoholic beverages will be allowed to borrow the bikes and kayaks.

People must be 16 years of age or older to ride a bike and provide a driver’s license or an equivalent form of identification. People must be 12 years of age or older to borrow a kayak and regardless of skill level, will receive a safety briefing. All paddlers will be required to wear the provided personal flotation device. An acknowledgement of risk will be required from anyone using a bike or kayak.


The Schuylkill River Greenways Pedal & Paddle excursion will be offered at three of the Trails on Tap sites: Pottstown Riverfront Park, Valley Forge National Historical Park and Norristown Riverfront Park.

The Pedal & Paddle program is a round-trip adventure which begins and ends from the same location. The excursion starts with a 4.5-mile bike ride along the Schuylkill River Trail using cruisers from the free Pottstown-based bike share program. After the bicycling portion, participants paddle back in a kayak to their starting location via the Schuylkill River.

All participants will be required to wear the provided personal flotation device during the kayaking portion and must sign a waiver. Regardless of skill level, everyone will receive a safety briefing before beginning the excursion. Gear, guides and snacks are all included in the registration. The cost is $35 per registrant and participants must be 16 years of age or older. This program is limited to 15 people at each site and participants must register in advance.

Below are the dates a Pedal & Paddle excursion will be a Trails on Tap location this summer.

• June 29: Pedal & Paddle at Pottstown Riverfront Park

• July 6: Pedal & Paddle at Valley Forge National Historical Park

• July 13: Pedal & Paddle at Valley Forge National Historical Park

• Aug. 3: Pedal & Paddle at Norristown Riverfront Park

For more information about the Pedal & Paddle excursion and to register in advance, visit For more information about the new Trails on Tap series and corresponding activities, visit the website

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