Most of the year, I feel pretty good about our schedule. It’s busy, sure, but we have a routine. We get up, drop kids at school and head to work. Afterward, it’s all about sports and getting dinner on the table. Then we have a little reading time before lights out. It can get hectic, but at least there’s a method to the madness. But then summer hits and our routine goes flying out the window.

Thorbeckes Swim Lessons
There are many fun things for kids to do in Lewis County. Here Roan Rush enjoys the pool at Thorbeckes Aquatic Center in Centralia. Photo credit: Jessica Reeves-Rush.

My kids love summer. Who wouldn’t? Long carefree days, fun in the sun, and no schoolwork. But there’s one problem – with both parents at work and no transportation of their own, summer gets boring quick.

This is a shame, because there are so many fun things to do in our area. We’ve got the Boys and Girls Club of Chehalis, Thorbeckes, the pool, the Centralia Rollerdrome, Shankz and so much more. As much as I’d like them to enjoy all these fun things, I don’t have any way to get them there.

Or at least I didn’t think I did.

I recently discovered that from July 5 to September 1, kids 18 years old and younger ride Twin Transit buses for FREE.

Kids can attend all the fun, educational Timberland events by simply hopping on Twin Transit. Photo courtesy: Centralia Timberland Library.

The offer is pretty straight forward. Kids age 11 to 18 can hop on and off – no strings attached. Kids 10 and under must ride with someone age 16 or over. It’s that easy.

At first, I was hesitant. What if something happened? Then I found out many Twin Transit drivers also drive school buses during the school year. They know how to keep an eye out for kids.

Then I thought, what if they get lost? But that turned out to be an unfounded fear as well. It doesn’t take kids long to learn how the system works, quickly matching color-coded routes and corresponding schedules. It’s educational and empowering.

The confidence this small taste of independence gives them is incredible, preparing them for college and adulthood. Once they know how to use the system, they can ride the bus to their first job, Running Start classes, after school sports and more. They’re learning invaluable life skills – and it doesn’t cost a thing.

Club kids creating fireworks in a jar as part of Independence Week at summer camp. Photo courtesy: The Boys & Girls Club of Chehalis.

With a little independence, this summer promises to be my kids’ best one yet. With free Twin Transit transportation, they can meet up with friends, attend educational library events, and enjoy all the fun our area has to offer.

I’ve even started hopping on the bus myself. For only $1 each way or $2 all day, it’s affordable. Plus, I can spend the time I would have wasted driving doing something I actually enjoy. I work on projects, read a book, watch a show on my cell or just chat with other passengers. It’s a win-win.

If you have questions or would like more information, give Twin Transit a call at 360-330-2072.

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