LIDO BEACH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Swim, sunbathe, surf – or a quiet spot to fish, hike or picnic.

Long Island leaders are urging you to make your vacation a “staycation” this summer.

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As CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan reports, Robin Fisher, a birdwatcher, spotted a mom, dad and two baby ospreys nesting in Lido Beach.

(credit: CBS2)

“Someplace like this, where you can come and see the osprey. You don’t have to pay anything to come in and enjoy nature,” Fisher said.

“We also have astronomy, which is for free, and you can just look up in the sky. We had partial eclipse, anybody could have seen it,” said Massapequa astronomer Nancy Ricigliano.

It’s a staycation. To fish, and boat, order ice cream, and dine around the corner, or try camping at the ocean.

“It’s very local to home, We come here, we feel like we’re on vacation,” said Farmingdale camper Sandy Blais.

In our area, families living with enforced austerity and unable to afford exotic travel are finding joy in their own back yards.

“I love it here, it’s my summer vacation,” said Gloria Violandi. Her coveted oceanside cabana is among those acquired through a lottery system.

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For the first time ever, at Nassau County’s Nickerson Beach, instead of renting for the entire summer, there’s a new change.

(credit: CBS2)

“You can rent a cabana for just one week,” Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said. “That includes six bracelets for the pool. A new concessionaire will be doing clam bakes.”

And there will be a steel drum band.

Access to the ocean, the pool, playground, skate park: $250 a week for a cabana. The campground is $47 a night.

“It’s my happy place. This is our first year here,” said Geryl Carlson.

“The people are very friendly. It’s all your neighbors from around the county,” said Donald Kolman.

Parks run by the county and town are free for strolling, picnicking, summer concerts and movies. Nominal fees for swimming or special events, like the flying trapeze.

“You can find local places where you can have fun, still enjoy your summertime, and really stay with the family,” said Lido Beach resident Carlos Duarte.

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Despite the economic blow to so many over the past year, summertime can still be a fulfilling local adventure.

Jennifer McLogan