50 Things to do this summer while social distancing


Becky Fritzsche, Editor-in-Chief

Finding things to do while social can be difficult. Trying to stay home and not become extremely bored has proved more difficult than it ever seemed. While it may seem like there is nothing to do, here is a list of 50 different activities to do away with your boredom. 

  1. Read a book. While this seems like something boring, it can be a lot of fun if you find the right book. The best part is you can buy local and worry free from the Nook, which delivers in town. 
  2. Listen to new artists. I often find myself listening to the same music over and over again until my favorite artists release something new. Exploring different, smaller artists is a fun way to pass time and find your new favorite song. 
  3. Wake up early to watch the sunrise. Waking up early is not ideal, but it can be fun every once in a while to wake up and watch the sun rise. 
  4. Paint something. For some this may not be seen as something that would be fun, but break out that old Crayola watercolor set from the fourth grade and paint something. 
  5. Have a weekly Zoom Party. Send everyone a link and suddenly all your friends are chatting and catching up on the things you have been doing. 
  6. Practice mindfulness. From making a list of all the things you are grateful for to just taking 5 minutes to think about all the things in your life that make you happy, mindfulness is a great way to keep positive and optimistic during troubling times. 
  7.  Bust out those old legos in storage and create something. Make a big house or an insane car. 
  8. Watch all the Oscar nominee films. Go to oscars.org and there are the lists of the winners and all the nominees. 
  9. Learn a new language. Recently, Duolingo has been my best friend as I struggle to learn Portuguese. 
  10. Bake a yummy dessert. Wanting something sweet and delicious, but don’t want to risk going out, look up a recipe for your favorite dessert. I recently made this heavenly vegan brownie batter that satisfied my sweet tooth. 
  11. Try working out in a new way. With many gyms still being closed, it has been hard figuring out different ways to exercise. There are tons of different workout videos on YouTube with all sorts of different methods that make you feel the burn. 
  12. Go through your closet. Get rid of all items that are never worn and don’t fit. Donate them to your local thrift store or sell them online to earn some extra cash. 
  13. Write something. This is the perfect time to let those creative juices flow and write something you enjoy writing about. Write a poem for the Avant or submit something to an online writing contest. 
  14. Learn how to make friendship bracelets. All you need is embroidery string to create some cool new accessories. 
  15. Bring out your inner green thumb and try planting. Buy a small pot, a small bag of soil, and a packet of flower seeds for under $15 and suddenly you have a new little plant friend.
  16. Watch some reality television. From Dance Moms to Love Island, there are tons of free reality tv shows you can watch from a browser. 
  17. Go on a long bike ride. There are tons of beautiful countryside surrounding Baldwin waiting to be explored. Hop on a bike and go spend an hour soaking up the sun and breathing some fresh air. 
  18. Do a puzzle. Think regular puzzles are too easy, try one with more pieces, one with pieces of the same color or one that is 3D. 
  19. Have a movie marathon. Don’t want to do it alone? Try using Netflix Party, a free extension to Chrome. All you have to do is download it, send a URL to your friends and watch a bunch of movies. For something other than Star Wars or Harry Potter, try watching all Tom Hanks movies in order, the entire Richard Curtis/Hugh Grant collection or all John Hughes films. 
  20. Listen to a musical. When my friends first started trying to convince me to listen to some Broadway soundtracks, I was reluctant. That was until I listened to Dear Evan Hansen. From there I became obsessed and started listening to Hamilton, Wicked, the Waitress and more. 
  21. Learn calligraphy. There are plenty of YouTube videos for beginners and it is a secret talent that could come in handy from time to time. 
  22. Write to a Pen Pal. Go to penpalworld.com and write to someone. All you need to do is create a profile and connect with people all over the world. 
  23. Try meditating. Find a nice quiet place in the sun and focus on your breathing. Meditation is great for mindfulness and can be quite calming. 
  24. Have a family game night. Hanging out with family can be fun, especially when games are involved. My family’s personal favorites are Ticket to Ride and Scrabble. 
  25. Make a pillow fort. Grab some blankets, chairs and pillows and have a blast making your own fort. After, make some popcorn and have a movie marathon. 
  26. Learn to cook. Start out with helping make dinner and slowly progress to making it on your own. I love trying new recipes using ingredients I normally wouldn’t use. Even if it doesn’t work out, you can always order pizza. 
  27. Change your hair. Been too scared to try bangs? Now is the time to cut or dye your hair however you like without the worry of anyone judging you. Don’t want the commitment? There are tons of different ways to style and shape hair from curling it to using straws to get heatless curls.
  28. Go frisbee golfing. Recently my mother, sisters and I all went and had a blast. All you need is the one time purchase of frisbees and you can have a great time. We went to Big Bull Creek, which had 15 holes and beautiful scenery. 
  29. Rearrange something. Maybe the way your apps on your phone are organized bothers you, or you want to change the setup of your room; rearranging things can be fun and helpful.
  30. Teach some new tricks to your dog. Fun fact: you can teach an old dog new tricks. Teach your furry friend how to shake, play dead, roll over and give kisses on command. 
  31. Try out some new games on your phone. My favorite games to play have recently been sudoku and Stardew Valley. 
  32. Try doing things with your non dominant hand for a day. Writing, eating, playing on your phone and brushing your teeth all seem like easy mindless tasks, but doing it with your non dominant hand can be difficult. 
  33. Learn some old English words and weave them into your conversations with friends. Because wherefore not. 
  34. Get creative on TikTok. This platform has a plethora of content from comedy sketches to drawing to dancing. The possibilities are endless and there are so many creators to get inspiration from. 
  35. Learn some magic tricks. Start out with cards and move on from there. When social distancing stops you can surprise you friends with your mad skills. 
  36. Make a list of all the movies and tv shows you haven’t watched, or want to watch, and start checking movies off the list. 
  37. Go through all the old photos on your phone that are taking up storage. It is a great way to clean up your phone and free some storage to try out some new apps. 
  38. Go hiking. There are tons of trails all around Paola, Ottawa and Lawrence. Just look up trails near you, bring a water bottle and a few snacks and hit the trails. 
  39. Customize some of your clothes. Tie dye, bleach, and cut yourself some cool and unique new clothes. 
  40. Try a fun new diet. Not all diets have to be about losing weight. Changing up the way you eat can be fun, healthy, and help you try new foods. Diets like the Mediterranean and whole foods diets are good ways to practice healthy eating in a safe manner. 
  41. Have a spa day. Paint your nails, put on a face mask, and have a bubble bath. Just relax and treat yourself. 
  42. Have a social distancing party. Pick a parking lot and have everyone park 6 feet apart with the trunk facing the circle. Pop open your trunks and hang out. It is a great way to socialize while social distancing. 
  43. Go to a craft store and buy some fun crafts. There are tons of different cool kits from candy making to science experiments to knitting. 
  44. Try fostering animals. Unleashed Pet Rescue is a great organization where you can foster dogs and cats to prepare them for a future forever home. 
  45. Camp outside in your backyard. Put up a tent, fill it with blankets and snacks, and spend the night under the stars. 
  46. Get crafty and create a cool art project. I recently cut up some old magazines and made a giant collage. 
  47. Explore different content creators. There are tons of different creators on platforms like Instagram, YouTube, TikTok and more that create cool content. Plus, it is always good to support smaller creators on the rise and help their career while you end your boredom. 
  48. Learn about something random from Wikipedia. This may sound like something weird to do but just go onto the Wikipedia home page and click onto a page that sounds interesting to you. With over six million different pages, there is bound to be something that you will find interesting.
  49. Listen to podcasts. I love listening to podcasts, especially when I am doing chores or cooking. There are tons of free podcasts over an abundance of topics. My personal favorites are Stuff You Should Know and Views. 
  50. If worst comes to worst and you are still bored after doing every activity on this list, just sleep. Naps are nice.