Guests at Long Bay Resort don't have to worry about their teens hiding behind their cellphones out of boredom. With a long list of on-site amenities geared toward teens, such as swimming pools, aquatic attractions and an arcade, Long Bay gives teens a fun and safe environment to play in. Here are some places around town that are popular — and FREE — for teens:
* Beach: The ultimate free place to hang out on the Grand Strand is in Long Bay Resort's backyard — the beach. While guests of all ages can spend time relaxing in the sand and surf during daylight hours, the beach becomes a bit of a hot spot for teens after the sun goes down. Located within viewing distance of Long Bay's oceanfront tanning lawn, the beach is close enough that parents can easily keep an eye on their teens, but far enough that the teens can mix and mingle with other guests their age.
* Broadway at the Beach: It's not the best place to go when you have no money to spend, but teens can explore the 350-acre, multi-purpose entertainment complex in a safe environment just to enjoy a little space while their parents shop, dine and entertain their younger siblings. Free activities include nightly live music and other entertainers, such as comedians, jugglers and stilt-walkers, as part of the Summer Nights at Broadway series. The highlight is free fireworks shows virtually every Tuesday and Friday night during the summer. There are also excellent window-shopping and people-watching opportunities.
* Myrtle Beach Boardwalk: The downtown district is one happening place during the summer-long Hot Summer Nights series. With nightly entertainment featured on the Plyler Park stage, teens can take in the live music and other entertainers without constant adult supervision. Older teens can stroll the 1.2-mile oceanfront walkway to see the sights, like the Myrtle Beach SkyWheel, the Second Avenue Pier and the crow’s nest high atop the Gay Dolphin Gift Cove. There are also beach volleyball courts available for open play every day.
* Pepper Geddings Skateboard Park: Skateboarding is banned on the sidewalks in Myrtle Beach, so many teens gravitate to the free and open skate park at the nearby Pepper Geddings Recreation Center. Located beside Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium, this park offers ramps and other features that allow skaters to practice their sport and meet other kids with the same interest. Be sure to pack their board, or pick one up at one of the many sporting goods stores around town.
* The Market Common: A day of shopping or a night of dining can be pretty pricey in this upscale retail district, but there's no admission fee for strolling the streets of the urban village on the former Myrtle Beach Air Force Base. It’s a safe place for teens to separate from their folks for a few hours while checking out the latest fashions or cycling in the adjoining Grand Park. The Market Common also hosts free weekly movie nights under the stars and other teen-friendly festivities during the summer months.
The best part about staying and playing at Long Bay Resort is that it has something for everyone — even the often-misunderstood teenagers. Make it a happy family vacation for all with a trip to Myrtle Beach and Long Bay Resort.