The Best Ways to Be Social While Socially Distancing

What we (I) thought was going to be a couple weeks away from family and friends has quickly spiraled into over a couple month’s long battle between my logical brain and my illogical social desires. Like many of you, I’ve been a hardcore quarantiner—keeping my contact with other people as minimal as possible since mid-March. But, as restrictions have started to ease, I’ve been toying with how I can safely and responsibly start to see a few friends who I’ve previously only seen from the screen of my laptop. It will be a cold day in you-know-where before you catch me inside of a bar or restaurant, but if you’re looking to keep your risk low while finding ways to interact with family and friends, I have some fun suggestions below.

Picnics in A Park

Many bars and restaurants are offering curbside takeout of food and drinks. Stop by your favorite spot, support their business, and take the goodies to the park for a socially distanced picnic. Being outdoors, generally, is the best move when trying to socialize safely. Lay down a blanket at least six feet from other picnickers and enjoy a beautiful day outside. Also, if meal prepping is more your thing, put together an old-fashioned picnic basket of your favorite meats, cheese, crackers, etc. for an Instagram-worthy picnic set up. Pro tip: don’t forget the wine opener!

Take A Hike

Getting out in nature with a friend or family member is a perfect way to get your social fix without putting yourself or others at risk. Depending on where you live, hiking may not be an option, so feel free to adjust this based on your personal local. So, if I hike looks more like a walk on the beach, that’s perfectly fine! Hikes and walks mostly allow you to keep a safe distance between people while engaging in a shared experience. Don’t forget the sunscreen and have a great day!

Go for A Swim

Whether this is at a friend’s pool, at the beach, in a lake, or wherever you can find a body of water, taking a dip is a safe way to socialize. It’s outdoors, so that’s an automatic win. This doesn’t mean you should attend a crowded pool party (I recommend an inch, don’t take a mile), but it does mean you can have a little summer fun in the sun with a couple close friends or family members.

Beyond this list, many outdoor activities are welcomed. Just remember to keep the group small and that everyone practices the same social distancing measures that you do. Now that things are opening up, socializing is definitely a “play at your own risk” game, but there’s ways to maintain a social life while being safe and responsible. It’s a new world for us social butterflies, might as well lean into it.

Need more ideas? Everything from fishing, kayaking, tennis, surfing, building sand castles, golfing, and more can be done social distantly. If you need to rent equipment, be sure to bring disinfecting wipes to wipe down your gear before using.

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