It doesn't matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was. - Anne Sexton

Fathers play a significant role in kids' lives. They're important role models, influence self-esteem and school performance, make great coaches and are fun-loving playmates.

Father's Day is on Sunday, June 21st, so don't be caught scrambling for the perfect way to show you care. Try some of these ideas to show your dad just how important he is to you.

Video Surprise - Make a "World's Best Dad" video he'll treasure for years to come. Put on your brainstorming cap for your own ideas, or try some of these ideas for your video. Share special memories of your dad, sing to him, read him a poem or do skits. Get the whole family involved and conduct interviews with each other with Dad as the main topic. Don't forget your props such as a banner or collection of his prized possessions, including sports trophies or equipment, to add a personal touch. Most importantly, be sure to let him know just how much he means to you in your video.

King for the Day
It isn't every day your dad gets waited on hand and foot. Offer to be his loyal butler for the day: Take him coffee and breakfast in bed; fetch his newspaper; lay out his clothes, bath towel and mat; serve him beverages and snacks; clean up after him and anything else to give him the royal treatment.

Memories of Dad - Purchase a scrapbook and create a record of memories about you and your dad. Include photos of special outings, events and holidays you've had together. Also include other memorabilia such as concert or sporting event ticket stubs, postcards and brochures. Next to each photo or item, describe your memories of those special times with your father.

A Man to Remember - Get your creative juices flowing and write a poem for your dad. You don't need to be a poet to come up with a few thoughtful words to say how much he means to you. Describe the impact he's had on your life and how he's helped you to become the person you are today. Then print it on stationery, matte and frame it.

Musical Moment - Take your father to see his favorite band or performing artist, enjoy a jazz or blues festival or pack up some lawn chairs, and listen to a local concert-in-the-park. Watch a YouTube video of his favorite singer.

Togetherness Takes Two - Has your dad been putting off the dreaded task of cleaning out his attic, basement or garage? Give him a gift of shelving materials and brackets, wall racks and ceiling hooks or storage crates. Then spend the day helping him to get it organized while catching up on old times.

World's Greatest - Let dad know that he's the greatest 365 days a year! Give him a "World's Greatest Dad" coffee mug, t-shirt, book cover, bookmarker, wallet card or another trinket that he'll see or use regularly.

Sports Buff's Surprise - Take your dad for a sporting good time. Play a game of golf, tennis or basketball, go fishing at the river's edge or enjoy a paddle around a lake. If being a spectator is more his thing, buy tickets to his favorite sporting
event such as a baseball or football game, wrestling match or horse race.

Weekend Getaway - Get in touch with nature and each other on a camping trip for two. Either rough it in a tent or rent a mini cabin at a state park. Spend your weekend enjoying nature hikes, sightseeing, fishing, boating, playing cards and taking it easy together.

Father's Day Feast - As the old adage goes, the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. So treat dad to a mouth-watering meal on the barbecue. Fix him his favorite: steak, ribs, chicken, burgers or chops for starters. Don't forget the grilled potatoes or squash, garlic bread or rolls, fresh green beans or asparagus, sweet corn, potato salad and, last but not least, his favorite dessert.

Treat Him Like a King - What better way to show your appreciation for all his hard work than to indulge him. Give your father a gift certificate for a professional massage, which will sure to please.

Just the Two of Us - Put together a photo collage of you and your father. There are many ways to do this. Find instructions at your nearby craft store and create a decoupage photo collage. Keep it simple with a multi-photo frame or purchase a unique 3D photo collage frame. These are available at arts and crafts supply stores and online.

Take a Stroll - Enjoy a peaceful walk together in a park or the country. Better yet, gather your bikes or roller blades, hit a scenic bike path and enjoy the fresh summer air.

Certificates of Appreciation - Show Dad you appreciate his hard work by returning the favor. Make coupons that say: "In appreciation for all that you do, Dad. Redeem this certificate for a hassle-free car wash by me!" Other favors include sweeping out the garage, mowing the lawn or any other task he normally handles.

Catch a Flick … or Two - Treat your dad to a movie fest. Rent a couple newly released videos or some of his longtime favorites. Or head to the cinema for a double feature. Whether you take the movies in at home or the theater, don't forget the hot, buttered popcorn, candy and soft drinks.

Get in Touch with His Soft Side - Give your dad a book of poetry specially written for fathers. Try one of these:

  • "Fathers: A Collection of Poems" by David Ray and Judy Ray

  • " Fathers: Collected Poems" by Ken Koprowski

  • "Thoughts to Share With a Wonderful Father: A Collection of Poems" by Blue Mountain Arts Collections

A Gift of Giving - Does your dad have a favorite cause or charity such as The Humane Society, The Nature Conservancy or American Cancer Society? If so, why not give him a membership or make a donation in his name? Remember small donations add up and are always appreciated.


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Kimberly Blaker is a professional lifestyle and parenting freelance writer. She also does B2C and B2B copywriting. Find her at kimberlyblaker.com