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Memorial Day 2016 A-Z Healthy Summer Survival Guide

The Best Links and Life Hacks for Everything from Air Travel to Zika

Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start of summer, and it’s a great time to relax with family and friends. To help maximize your warm weather bliss, we have scoured the interwebs to uncover some of the best links and life hacks for a healthy and happy summer of ‘16.

A Is for Air Travel
When it comes to finding great airfare deals, check out The site has a very cool interface, and offers timely email updates as prices change.

Here in the US, the TSA just announced they are hiring more people to help with long security lines this summer. Hopefully, this will help ease some of the security line hassle. But, if you really want to move through the airport with ease, you may want to sign up for TSA Pre-check.

B Is for Bears
A brown bear was recently spotted just a few miles from our new office in Center City, Philadelphia. You just never know when you’ll run into one of these four-legged carnivores! So, if you’re heading anywhere near the woods this summer, be sure to check out these bear safety tips from the Yellowstone Park Foundation.


C Is for Cookouts
If you need some brushing up on your ninja grill master basics, this video series from Weber is a great place to start. To kick things up a notch, check out this incredible range of BBQ spices from the Savory Spice Shop.


D Is for Dogs
For you dog lovers out there, these best doggie apps not only help keep track of Fido, but also provide an entire range of mobile doggie delight.


E Is for Ear Infections
Nothing can put a damper on summer fun more than a crying child with an ear infection. This is where the Oto smart otoscope can come to the rescue. This anywhere health device allows you to capture a video of the eardrum from your iPhone. You can monitor your family’s ears from anywhere and get the answers you need when you suspect an ear infection. If ear infections have been an ongoing issue in your family, the $79 investment is money well spent.

F Is for Fishing
During the heat of the day, the fish tend to lay low, but once evening sets in, get ready to pull in some keepers! This is especially true if you’re staying at a beautiful fishing lodge in British Columbia or Alberta.


G Is for Gardening
If you want to turn your thumb a darker shade of green this summer, be sure to check out This site is as much about design as it is about gardening, so get ready to discover some great tips for both indoor and outdoor living!

“Good design is intelligence made visible.”
– Le Corbusier


H Is for Heat
It’s probably no surprise, but heat advisories are already heading our way. There are hundreds of heat related deaths each year, so be sure to keep your cool with these tips from the National Weather Service.


I Is for Ice Cream
Ice cream never goes out of season, but naturally summer marks the high point of cool delight. Keep these store locators handy for any ice cream emergency. Thanks to the miracles of modern franchising, chances are good you’re never more than 30 minutes from a Ben & Jerry’s, Baskin-Robbins, or Friendly’s.
Ben & Jerry’s

Of course true ice cream connoisseurs have their local favorites – here are some of ours.

San Fran: Be sure to try Smitten! Made to order ice cream using liquid nitrogen!

Philly: Head to Franklin Fountain for truly old school ice cream.

NYC: 10Below features Thai-inspired ice cream rolls.

Boston: Emack & Bolio’s, born in 1975 in a Brookline basement and befriended by legendary rock stars, has been turning out delicious hits ever since.


J Is for July 4th
Fourth of July weekend is made for picnics, watermelon, and of course fireworks, and more fireworks. Phantom Fireworks is one of the largest fireworks companies in the country, and has everything you’ll need to light up the night! They even have a July 4th countdown clock to help keep your pyrotechnic project plan on track.


K Is for Kites
Kites are one of the original green-powered technologies, and continue to evolve into all types of amazing designs. If you to find yourself on the Outer Banks this summer, be sure to stop at one of the many Kitty Hawk Kites locations. You can even learn to fly a hang glider! For additional online shopping, check out

L Is for Louis Armstrong (and Ella Fitzgerald)
There is no better way to prepare for summer than kicking back and listening to Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald belt out their classic “Summertime”, when the livin’ is easy and the fish are jumpin’.


M Is for Milkshakes
On a hot day, a great tasting milkshake can be absolutely blissful. Here are some great tips for making the perfect homemade milkshake –  The Complete Guide to Making Milkshakes at Home.



N Is for Night Sky
No technology is needed to go out at night and enjoy the stars, but if you want some additional info about what constellations are hanging above in the starry starry night, be sure to check out an app called Star Walk 2.

“Star Walk 2 is an exquisite stargazing tool that combines astronomical data with premium technology to deliver an effortless journey through thousands of stars, comets, and constellations. All you have to do is point your iPhone or iPad at the sky.”


O Is for Ocean
Many of us head for the nearest ocean during the summer, heading to our favorite beaches. However, if you are searching for a beach that is a little bit off the beaten path, check out these undiscovered beach gems.


P Is for Poison Ivy
Poison ivy produces an oil called urushiol that causes a rash in about 85 percent of people who come in contact with it, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Urushiol sticks to everything it comes in contact with, so be sure to wash everything if you think you’ve come in contact. Here are eight tips for beating the itch.


Q Is for Quench
For those of you who enjoy quenching your summer thirst with a cold craft beer, be sure to check out a mobile app called Untappd. This well-designed app helps you find local beers, keep track of which ones you like, and get recommendations from friends.  + iTunes Link


R Is for Road Trip
Summer is when many of us will set out on the great American road trip. Whether you are going for a small jaunt or a cross-country journey, be sure to consult the experts at RoadTrip America (RTA).

“Our goal is to help you plan the roadtrip of your dreams. Online since 1996, RTA offers a variety of free tools as well as a friendly community of roadtrip experts and enthusiasts.”

S Is for Sharks
It seems as though more and more people are having an unfortunately close encounter with a razor sharp set of shark’s teeth. If you plan to be splashing in the waves this summer, this “How to Survive A Shark Attack” infographic is a must read.

This map from National Geographic provides a graphic overview of beaches where you need to pay special attention!



T Is for Thunderstorms
While many of the best summer memories are made under blue skies and lazy white clouds – the weather can change in an instant. To help track those rolling thunderstorms, check out an app called Dark Sky. This amazingly accurate location-based app “can tell you at a glance exactly when it will rain (or snow) up to an hour in advance, so you’re free to walk the dog or run out to lunch and know you’ll stay dry. You can also explore the most beautiful weather animation you’ve ever seen, both forward in time or back.”


U Is for Ultraviolet Radiation
Thanks to groups like Melanoma International, , over the last few years people have become much more aware about the dangers of overexposure to UV rays. Here are some key tips from the American Academy of Dermatology for keeping a healthy glow this summer, and avoiding a dangerous burn.


V Is for Virtual Reality
This summer, get ready for VR headsets to start finding their way into all kinds of places – maybe even your own basement! On a grander VR scale, the VOID will open in New York City, with an immersive VR attraction for Ghostbusters. They have big plans for rolling out VR locations all across the country.



W Is for Watermelon
Thanks to the internet, watermelons are not just for eating anymore. Check out all these incredible ideas for carving up your favorite summertime sweetness.


X Is for X-Men
X-Men Apocalypse has already hit the theaters overseas, and has been met with mixed reviews. Running at almost 2.5 hours in length, be sure to buy a large popcorn if you go to see this action thriller. Some other summer of ‘16 hits to look forward to include The Legend of Tarzan, Ghostbusters, Finding Dory, The Secret Life of Pets, and Independence Day: Resurgence. Rotten Tomatoes has a helpful (and ad free) list of all the upcoming movies, by release date.


Y Is for Yacht
The sharing economy has been making big strides lately as sites like Airbnb make it incredibly easy to match owners and renters. This is even true when it comes to yachts. After all, why go through the hassle of buying a new yacht this summer when you can just rent one on VRBO!



Z Is for Zika
Unfortunately, it looks like the Zika virus and the summer of ‘16 will be linked together like a bad summertime pop radio song. However, there are mobile tools and information sources already on the marketplace to help answer all your questions and concerns.

For those of you who need a more visual approach, these CDC produced infographics are uniformly well-conceived and executed.




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Jim Walker

Jim Walker

Jim Walker is Director, Marketing Strategy at Cadient, a Cognizant Company. Jim provides innovative marketing insights for a wide range of clients, as well as leading Cadient’s content marketing strategy. He is particularly interested in helping brand teams effectively leverage their digital content. He can be reached at
Jim Walker

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