Top News

Forty-four ways you can still have fun in Newfoundland and Labrador in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic

A woman and her dog hit the trails in Corner Brook for a jog. — Diane Crocker/SaltWire Network
A woman and her dog hit the trails in Corner Brook for a jog. — Diane Crocker/SaltWire Network

Ideas that respect physical distancing while lifting your mood



ST. JOHN'S — So, the Regatta’s cancelled. And Iceberg Alley’s cancelled. And campgrounds, playgrounds and movie theatres are prohibited from opening.

But COVID-19 can’t cancel fun altogether.

Understandably, the pandemic might make you feel like having fun is a thing of the past.

Every day we’re told to stay home as much as possible, to only go out for essentials or a daily walk in our own neighbourhood, and with good reason. Globally, COVID-19 has killed more than 313,000 people, including three Newfoundlanders and Labradorians.

We all must do our part, and so far, we’re doing that well. On Thursday, the province marked 14 consecutive days with no new confirmed cases.

And while doing your part, you can still participate in that seemingly faraway concept — fun — while respecting the public health measures.

Below are 44 ideas to get you started.


Fun for one

Ideas you can pursue independently.

• Dust off that musical instrument you haven’t played in years and give it a try.

• Many museums and art galleries around the world are offering free virtual tours. Start by viewing the Mona Lisa at the Louvre (louvre.fr/en/).

• Start a journal or blog. Think about how interesting it will be to read about your pandemic experiences a decade from now.

• Join a virtual book club, or simply read a good book. Download the Libby app to continue borrowing books virtually from Newfoundland and Labrador Public Libraries.


Check it out our new article in The Telegram for some ways to get creative with your book club... plus you'll get a...

Posted by NL Public Libraries on Wednesday, May 20, 2020

• Meditate or exercise at home. The YMCA has some free online workout videos you can try at ymcanl.com.

• Recreate the spa at home. Run a hot bath, do your nails and put on a mud mask. Order supplies from some local favourites, such as Queen Bee Cosmetics, East Coast Glow or Tval.

• Write and deliver thank you notes for frontline workers you’ve encountered during the pandemic.

• Organize your tupperware drawer, sock drawer or spice cupboard. Clean out your closet and put clothes in garbage bags to donate later. This may not be the most amusing thing on this list, but you’ll feel so much better afterward!

• Learn how to knit. Local wool shop Cast On! Cast Off! offers curbside pickup. Place a wool order, and order the book “K-N-I-T H-O-W,” which offers instructions.


Just got in a few more copies if this awesome book! This is great one for those if you are just learning how to knit! I’m here until 3 pm today to take your orders!

Posted by Cast On Cast Off on Wednesday, May 13, 2020

• Colouring was super fun as a child, and guess what? It’s still fun as an adult. You can pick up adult colouring books and coloured pencils at the grocery store.•

• Daydream while creating a bucket list of things you plan to do when the pandemic ends.

• Learn make-up, nail and hair tricks with the help of local beauty vloggers. Start with Sandi Ball’s popular CutePolish YouTube channel, which has 3.3 million subscribers.

• At a time when we have a lot to be annoyed about, soothe your mind by listing all of the things for which you are grateful.

• Try yoga. Melanie Caines is offering a free 30-day trial to view her virtual yoga practice at melaniecaines.uscreen.io.

• Just because the mall is closed doesn’t mean you can’t go twacking. Do it online. Downtown St. John’s has compiled a list of downtown businesses still open in some capacity at downtownstjohns.com, as has the St. John’s Board of Trade with a virtual mall of local shops, theneighbourgood.ca. Browse online, and if you’ve got the funds to splurge, treat yourself and support local all at once.


Welcome to The NeighbourGood – a collection of your favourite local vendors and entrepreneurs, all in one place! You’ll...

Posted by The NeighbourGood on Friday, May 15, 2020

• Use your spare time to strengthen your neighbourhood by joining the Neighbouring platform at neighbouring.org. Or if you’re not very internet savvy, simply do what the initiative asks: pick up the phone book and make a simple phone call to someone in your neighbourhood to make sure they’re doing alright. Ask if they need anything. Sometimes a friendly phone call is enough.

• Clean St. John’s spring cleanups are cancelled this year due to physical distancing measures, but you can still help keep the city clean. Next time you go for a walk, take a bag, rubber gloves and hand sanitizer, and pick up any trash you see along the way.


Duo distractions

Ideas for families of two.

• Complete a puzzle together. You can often find used puzzles for sale on Kijiji or Facebook Marketplace.

• Learn a new dance. Tango on the Edge posts daily videos on its Facebook page. Simply search "Tango on the Edge" on Facebook.


Good afternoon During these times I hope we are all safe at home. It has been challenging not being with our friends...

Posted by Tango on the Edge on Thursday, March 26, 2020

• Download Duolingo and learn a new language. You can practice conversations with one another, or join virtual conversation groups.

• Hardware stores are open; have fun tackling some home improvements together.

• Download a free trial of a streaming service, such as Highball TV, and watch as much as you can before the trial runs out. Make popcorn and get cozy!

• Read the "Dictionary of Newfoundland English" (heritage.nf.ca/dictionary/) and try to use one new word a day in your conversations with one another.

• Date night! Order takeout from your favourite restaurant and get dressed up. Light candles and drink wine. A list of restaurants offering takeout, delivery and curbside pickup is available online at socialdistanceclub.ca.


Ed Donovan of Mount Pearl was an early arrival at Bowring Park. He said he was eager to catch up with other regular park goers after so long away from the park. — BARB SWEET/THE TELEGRAM
Ed Donovan of Mount Pearl was an early arrival at Bowring Park. He said he was eager to catch up with other regular park goers after so long away from the park. — BARB SWEET/THE TELEGRAM


• Now that parks are open for walk- or bike-through traffic, go cycling together in scenic Bowring Park. Start from the gravel parking lot at the main entrance and take the old railway track to the harbourfront.

• Write a love letter to one another.

• Make a picnic and go for a drive. Park somewhere scenic and take in the view while you eat.

• Go fishing! Salmon angling season begins June 1.

• MusicNL’s weekly open mic night has gone virtual. Tune in on Mondays on its Facebook page.



Family entertainment

Ideas that are fun for all ages.

• Craft some homemade noise makers and use them Sunday evenings at 7 p.m. when you cheer for essential workers. A simple noise maker can be made by taping wax paper to one end of a paper towel roll. Poke a couple of small holes in the wax paper. Blow into the other end, covering some of the holes to create different sounds.

• Create chalk art in the driveway, or use it to play hopscotch.

• Take up bird watching. Start a journal of the kinds of birds you see, and include photos if you’re lucky to get a snap. Be a citizen scientist by logging birds, and other animals you see, at nlnature.com. Or log birds only at nf.birdatlas.ca.

• Using The Rooms’ website, find a piece of art in its collection and try to recreate it at home. Take a picture and share it online using the hashtag #artathome, or share it on The Rooms’ social media pages.



• Gardening centres are open. Use your spare time to grow something beautiful, or start a small garden.

• Try geocaching. Learn how to get started at recreationnl.com/geocaching/.

• Play board games, or play online and virtual games with your friends and family who aren’t in your bubble.

• Organize a virtual hangout with friends and family using apps such as Zoom or Google Hangouts.

• Get to know your elderly family members by interviewing them. You’ll cherish their answers as a keepsake for generations. Find question lists at legacyproject.org.

• Learn a new recipe. Preorder Jessica Mitton’s “Some Good: Sweet Treats,” available July 15 at jessicamitton.com, and learn some healthy twists on favourite Newfoundland desserts. Or participate in the Association for New Canadians’ “Virtual Multicultural Cooking Class” every other Friday. Find the ANC on Facebook for details.


Our first online Multicultural Cooking Class starts tonight! 🍲 Join us! 5:30 p.m. in Labrador; 6 on the island.

Posted by Association for New Canadians (ANC) on Friday, May 8, 2020

• Create scavenger hunts for the people in your bubble. You can do indoor scavenger hunts on rainy days, or head outdoors when the weather is nice.

• Learn how to make origami, and send your creations to your friends and family. Everyone loves to receive snail mail!

• The St. John's Storytelling Festival has gone virtual. Join them for their monthly storytelling night the second Wednesday of every month via Zoom. Details available at storytellingstjohns.ca.

• Parliament: The Virtual Experience offers a free look inside Centre Block, and highlights key public spaces, including the Senate, House of Commons, Library of Parliament and Peace Tower. They can be experienced online and using virtual reality at experienceparliament.ca.

• Frontline Action is now open for paintball, airsoft and lasertag, with modifications in place to maintain physical distancing. Details at frontlineaction.com.


Airsoft game from today on our village field. Thanks guys for your support.

Posted by Frontline Action on Sunday, May 17, 2020

Twitter: @juanitamercer_


RELATED:

Recent Stories