Summer fun doesn’t have to stop for COVID

The COVID-19 virus continues to affect many traditional summer plans – some have been cancelled or at the least, modified. But, with some creative planning, there are many ways to enjoy the summer while following the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) guidelines.

At the top of the list of precautions, consider outdoor activities as safer than indoor ones. Try for as much ventilation as possible and still wear a mask and keep interactions brief. There are four main factors to keep in mind when considering an activity: person, place, time, and space.

  • Person – You will want to keep the number of people around you at a minimum. It is suggested not to socialize with more than 10 people at a time.
  • Place – As mentioned, choose outdoor activities over indoor activities. There is a growing consensus among experts the risks of virus transmissibility in the air outdoors is quite low.
  • Time Most experts agree that after about 15-30 minutes of exposure, your risk increases significantly. You should always wear a face mask and wash your hands often.
  • Space – Even if you are outside, you should keep a minimum distance of 6 feet apart.

Walking outside, farmers markets, gardening, barbeques with a small crowd, and outdoor socialization while practicing social distancing are generally considered low risk activities. When participating in these activities, the CDC suggests that you do not hug or shake hands, clean reusable shared items before and after the event, use single-use products when possible, and keep a list of guests who attended in case you need to trace contact in the future.

If you don’t yet feel comfortable with venturing into public, there are plenty of online resources to keep you busy and entertained. Solar System Scope offers an incredibly accurate tour of the solar system, the night sky, and the ability to view outer space in real time. Many zoos, like the Atlanta Zoo’s panda cam, are offering real-time webcams to watch animals. Additionally, to replace in-person game night, try this website which offers numerous card games such as solitaire, Sudoku, backgammon, and more.

Being active, engaged, and socializing are important for a healthy outlook, especially during this pandemic.  While there are restrictions and guidelines, they do not have to limit events entirely as long as you are taking precautions to remain safe and healthy.