Alright, so perhaps the summer of 2020, here in Canada, is not exactly shaping up as expected. In fact, it is the complete opposite of what was expected! But that doesn’t mean that it has to be boring. There are plenty of super swell summertime activities that are perfect in the age of social distancing and confinement. And, not only are these top 5 activities excellently epic, but they won’t put a dent in your wallet either!
#1 VINTAGE, OLD-SCHOOL DRIVE-INS
You know what is making a comeback? Drive-ins! After slowly disappearing from the Canadian landscape over the past several years, drive-ins all across the country are re-appearing and are becoming more popular than ever! Some cities are turning their outdoor sports venues into temporary drive-in theaters. There have even been some cafes and restaurants that are attracting customers by using their parking lots for drive-ins. A quick google search of drive-ins in your area will help figure out where there are some near you.
*Fun Tip for making your drive-in experience epic: make sure to load up cool snacks like popcorn, soda and candy to munch on while watching your movie. But first make sure to check with the drive-in venue if outside snacks are permitted. Some places, such as restaurants, are using their kitchens to sell car-side snacks to help cover their lost revenue!
#2: GRAB THAT PICNIC BASKET
Want to get together with friends while maintaining a safe social distance? A classic picnic is the way to go! It’s actually a perfect idea because each person is responsible for bringing their own items, therefore there is no threat of cross-contamination. Each household simply brings their own blanket and makes sure to spread it out at the recommended distance. This way, everyone can still have a grand old time chit chatting and getting some much-needed summer sun and fun!
Outdoor games such as molkky, (if you’ve never heard of it, check it out - it’s super fun!), badminton, or old-school style bubbles are great games that can be played without sharing items. Molkky, for example, would require individual sticks, badminton would require a bit of creativity to avoid touching the shuttlecock, but other than that, these games are perfect for enjoying some outdoor time while respecting the current covid19 health measures.
*Fun Tip for turning your classic picnic into an epic one: bring bubbles for the adults too! Bubble blowing might seem like a cheap and easy activity that only young children enjoy, but you would be surprised how addictively entertaining it is for teens and adults as well! Trust us, you won’t be disappointed!
#3: CAMPING 101
People who are avid campers already know all about the joys of sleeping and living in the great outdoors. But for those of us who are more on the city-slicker side of the fence, it’s time to try something new!
Taking the family for a week-end getaway to sleep under the stars is a magical way to reconnect with Mother Nature and rediscover the truly important things in life. So grab some hot dogs, a carton or two of eggs and plenty of drinking water and teach the kiddos all about the joys of “roughing it”!
In order to minimize the cost of camping, try to see if you can borrow all or some of the camping necessities from friends. This is a great way to get organized for a fraction of the cost. Just make sure that everything borrowed has been thoroughly disinfected or a sufficient amount of time has passed since the items’ last use.
*Fun Tip for making your outdoor adventure truly magical, download a stargazing app and, at night when millions of twinkling stars begin to appear, learn all about the constellations and the astrological signs. It’s a wonderful way to feel the depth of just how small we really are.
#4: GO ON A “SNACK CRAWL”
Supporting local restaurants during these difficult times is more than important. Many of them have found fun, innovative ways to continue offering their wares, even while their dining rooms remain closed. One trend that seems to be popping up for many bars and restaurants is an outdoor “pop-up” stand offering snack type items such as sliders and fries. So why not go on a “snack crawl”? If you don’t know what that is (and you probably don’t since we just made it up), it’s basically just hitting a few of these restos, employing the recommended safe-distancing of course, and snacking on different foods. You can even opt for restaurants that offer curb-side or contactless takeout.
Every city or town in this great country has that street. You know the street that we are talking about. The one that is trendy and local and has those adorable shops and restos. But given that life has always been so fast-paced, we usually only get to peruse that street from the window of our car or while taking the city bus. Thanks to this forced slow-down, it’s the perfect time to take the opportunity to see it from an entirely different angle! It’s time to view it properly and support your favorite restaurants, all at the same time!
*Fun Tip for making the snack crawl extra special: Bring some paper and pencils for writing down your favorite items. You can even turn it into a family game of “judging” the snacks like a food critic would. It’s a creative way to get the whole family into food tasting and into trying new flavors and dishes.
#5: TAKE A HIKE - LITERALLY
We know it sounds cliché. But it’s not only about the hike. It’s about discovering the beauty of Canada - from coast to coast. So often, we live in a certain area and barely know anything about that area. If you were to commit to taking a 2 hour drive, in any direction, what beautiful trails, mountains, lakes, or swimmable waterfalls would you be able to find? The answer might surprise you!
For example, a quick Google search in my area revealed 5 swimmable waterfalls near me. I had no idea! Swimmable waterfalls seem like the type of things you only really see in movies! So now I can’t wait to pack up the “classic picnic” from point #2 and head out to find these idyllic swimming holes!
So what beautiful landscape awaiting discovery is in your area? Check with your provincial website or parks departement to see which areas are safe for visiting!
So, as we previously mentioned, the summer of 2020 is definitely not what we expected. Vacations have been canceled, family trips have been postponed, and kids day camps have been closed. But luckily there are a ton of options to turn our collective frowns upside down! All that is needed is a little ingenuity and creativity - and a lot of sunscreen! And don't forget to check with your local provincial websites and appropriate departments before organizing anything, just to make sure that you are employing the recommended safety protocols for each activity!
If you need a little extra helping hand to turn your summer into something exciting, you can reach iCASH.ca 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all summer long (even on holidays!)