Break up the monotony of quarantine and social isolation by hosting a spring break neighborhood party while maintaining social distancing.
Did you have to cancel your spring break plans? We are playing it day by day but it's safe to say our spring break plans are not going to be what they usually are. We just read tonight that about 1 in 3 people are under a "stay at home" or "shelter in place" order. Which means that most of you are also dealing with closed playgrounds, national parks and trails like we are in our area.
So HOW in the world do you make it feel like it's spring break and make the day feel different when you are being asked to not even leave your county? When a trip to the grocery store to get food is the biggest outing of the week?
You book yourself a trip from Los Livingroom to Puerto Frontyarda.
Then invite the neighborhood to join in. While maintaining proper social distancing of course.
You could really go all out or just make it simple and easy. A lot of you are trying to work full time from home and some are even trying to work from home while homeschooling kids too. Just doing something a little "different" is going to be something to be remembered and help break up some of the monotony of social isolation.
GETTING THE PARTY STARTED
The first thing is to get the party started by inviting neighbors to join in. Find out when students and/or colleges are out of school for spring break, or choose a week during social isolation that would work.
Make some posters and post them around your complex or neighborhood. You could even get city leaders involved to help get the word out and make it a city wide spring break event and post messages on Facebook or make banners.
DATES, TIME, PLACE
The best time to hold your party would probably be during your actual spring break week. But if spring break has already passed than choose a week sometime during your city or state's social distancing "safe at home" or "shelter in place" dates.
Most of the activities are probably best held in the evening. We've noticed the hardest times for us are 7:00pm on. Most of the stores, restaurants, and anything else left open at this time all close around 7--leaving us mostly in front of the TV. Having something to look forward to in the evening that's different and allows even those who are working to join in is ideal.
Asking neighbors to join in the festivities from their front yards is going to be important. People are usually out walking their dogs or walking the neighborhood so it's a great time to allow for conversation between neighbors walking by.
Time is ideal. In some parts of the world it might be cold in the evenings, and others it might be warming up. While some of the activities are fun glow in the dark themed, some require a little light so maybe a half hour to an hour before dark would be a great time. It doesn't need to require 2+ hours of time every night. Just asking people for an hour usually gets them out. But of course each family gets to choose the amount of time they want to spend so an hour is also a good starting parameter.
Chalk the Block: Ask neighbors to "Chalk the Block" with messages. They can color fun pictures on the sidewalk, chalk positive sayings, or chalk fun games like hopscotch. It's a great way to start the week so when people are out during the week they can see the fun sayings and messages neighbors leave. If you have elderly neighbors who may not be able to participate, leave them a message (or ask before leaving one on their sidewalk). Hopefully you won't get any April showers washing your work away too soon!
Starbucks Name Night: Head to your front porch for a coffee (or hot cocoa) night. Have neighbors ask each other and share their silly Starbucks names with each other (because we LOVE Starbucks, but how many times have they gotten your name wrong?) You can also encourage them to read a book out front while sipping their coffee or cocoa.
Puerto FrontYarda: Head outside for a night of fruity cocktails or mocktails on the front lawn or front porch. Ambitious neighbors can set out a socially distanced limbo stick for neighbors to go under as they walk around the neighborhood, teach a social distance hula class, or decorate their yard in carribean attire. Hopefully you don't have any neighbors practicing fire dancing--the fire department may not approve!
Arts and Crafts: Head outside to work on some artistic inspiration. Work on a painting while sipping a glass of wine or sparking water. Have a quilt tying and invite neighbors to join in to help while keeping your distance, or knit outside on the front porch while you chit chat with passing neighbors.
Patriotic Parade: Invite your neighborhood to show some pride for their county! We are all working hard to get through this difficult time and it's time to show your country some love! Decorate your house in patriotic colors, have kids decorate their bikes, wagons and scooters in your country's colors, and take a walk around the neighborhood to see what everyone has done to show their pride!
Pet Parade: Decorate your cats and dogs and take them out for a walk in style! After play a game in your front yard with your favorite pooches or animals so people passing by can see. One year one neighborhood even had a pet rat out front! Don't have an animal that loves the outdoors? Post a picture of your animal (or your favorite animal) so kids and people passing by can see!
Glow in the Dark: Light up the neighborhood in glow in the dark bracelets, necklaces and more! Play a game of light up basketball, soccer, frisbee (we found a glow in the dark frisbee game at the dollar store) or hold a front yard glow in the dark dance party.
Light the Night: End your spring break with a night to remember those who are struggling with COVID-19, those who are working to fight the illness, or those who may have lost their lives to it. Show your support by making luminarias to display at your home or lighting candles and leaving them on your front porch.
Night Rider: Use the night to serve others. Work on service projects or perform random acts of kindness. You could write letters to people in the hospital (many have strict limitations on who are allowed to visit them), write thank you letters to those helping in hospitals or a favorite teacher. You could also make a dinner and deliver it to a neighbor, or Facetime family members. You could even help neighbors needing help with outside chores.
Drive In Movie Night:
Head outside and watch a movie. Bring the popcorn, snacks and soda and put up a projection screen for other neighbors to appropriately from a distance enjoy or grab your tablets or laptops and watch a movie together as a family outside.
Share your Ideas! What are some other spring break ideas you have?