NPR published an article evaluating the risks involved with popular summer activities during the COVID-19 pandemic (find it here). Based on their report, we’re sharing suggested activities you can do safely with your family.
Spending the Day At the Beach Or Pool
The best news for summer is that going to the beach or a pool doesn’t put you at much risk for COVID. Water would dilute the virus and, therefore, it’s unlikely to spread infection. The key is to maintain social distance from other families while you’re resting on the sand or along the patio deck.
Outdoor Gathering With Family or Friends
low to medium risk
The current Executive Order allows for groups of 10 people and, according to experts, meeting in a spacious outdoor area with only a small group isn’t too risky. Make plans with a family member or family-friends for a backyard BBQ or picnic at a park. Sharing food, drinks, and utensils can increase risk so consider ordering out from a local restaurant (bonus you’re also supporting local business) or keeping it casual with beverages or Popsicle. Try to maintain social distance when possible and when the kids are playing together, consider having them wear masks (there are cute ones out there – in my family, my son likes to be ‘a ninja’).
Taking A Family Vacation
low to medium risk
We’ve spent a lot of time in our homes lately and if a change of scenery sounds fun, there’s good new – you can still stay at a hotel. Be safe and ask about the hotel’s cleaning policies, bring wipes to do a quick clean of common surfaces (especially the TV remote) and perhaps forego the top layer of bedding since it may not be washed after each use but otherwise the room itself should have only a low exposure rate. The risk increases when you’re in common areas like the lobby, gym or elevator. You can wear a mask and maintain social distance to keep the virus away.
While you’re exploring the new surrounding, confirm what is open to the public before you arrive and consider patio dining or take-out for a picnic instead of eating in a restaurant.
Camping Trips + Outdoor Adventures
Being outdoors is good for you and if you’re camping with your household away from the world that’s the best you can do. However, if you’re used to camping with friends or at a popular camp ground, the risk increases. As with everything, it’s best to be safe in communal areas and maintain a social distance. Many campgrounds are changing their policies to reduce the risk of spread. Check in with the park you camp at and see if/how they’ve made adjustments for the summer.
What about Bathrooms?!
Whether a friend asks to go inside or you’re out and about and someone needs to go, the risk of spread is low. Lots stuff happens in bathrooms at all times and they’re designed to prevent disease transmission. Be quick, be thoughtful and wash your hands for at least 20 seconds and you’ll be okay. After your guests leave you can clean the bathroom too.