If there is a silver lining to Social Distancing, it's the fact that we've all been forced to slow down, catch up with family, take more walks, and maybe even clean out a closet or two. Although our usual gathering spots and hangouts are temporarily shut down, we're discovering new ways to keep ourselves busy and entertained while we are physically apart from one another. Here are just five ways to get creative, fill some free time, or escape for just a little while.

Download a Book, Tune into Story Time, or Take a Virtual Trip

The Park City librarians may not be walking you through the stacks these days, but those literary-savvy characters have curated a bunch of online resources for grownups and kids. Plop your toddler in front of Ms. Katrina's remote story time or download a book you've been hankering to read. They've also compiled a list of virtual experiences and e-resources, ranging from daily "Lunch Doodles" with author Mo Willems to a "field trip" to Yellowstone National Park. parkcitylibrary.org 

Artsy Delivery

Known for its creative gatherings, The Paint Mixer has shifted gears from group lessons to art chez-vous. The Paint from Home Kit ($35) includes all the fixin's for an artsy solo fest: paintbrushes, paint, canvas, butcher paper, and even paper towel and rinse cup. Plus, the kit serves up an access code to the instructional video (featuring a local teacher), so the at-home artist can put together a masterpiece thanks to step-by-step guidance. thepaintmixer.com

Looking for some movie suggestions? "RBG" is just one of Park City Film's biweekly e-news recommendations.

Frame a Home Theater Experience

Pop some corn, cuddle up on the couch and escape into some seriously good film. The local cinema gurus at Park City Film are thoughtfully  delivering recommendations biweekly via e-newsletter (parkcityfilm.org). Perhaps, begin with the nonprofit's Women's History Month-themed recommendation “RBG” the Sundance documentary about the spitfire Supreme Court Justice, Ruth Bader Ginsburg (available on Amazon Prime and Hulu). As Park City Film's Katy Wang says, "It's an inspiring story and she is the picture of resilience." Apropos for these uncertain times. Other picks from Park City Film include: "Jane," a portrait of environmentalist-activist-scientist Dr. Jane Goodall (available on Amazon Prime, Hulu and Disney+).; "Battle of the Sexes," which chronicles the 1973 tennis match between women’s world champion Billie Jean King and ex-men’s-champ Bobby Riggs (available on Amazon Prime and iTunes); and "Lady Bird," the award-winning story centered on the turbulent bond between a mother and her teenage daughter (available on Amazon Prime and iTunes).  For kids, check out "The Eagle Huntress" and "Abominable"—both available on iTunes and Amazon Prime.  

Discover Your Inner Chef (or Grab Some Curbside Cuisine)

Dust off those unused pots and pans. Now is the moment to master high-altitude baking or to dive into crockpot cooking. If you need a little inspiration, there are a plethora of chef-bloggers out there, including local Kelley Epstein whose blog, Mountain Mama Cooks, delivers tips, tricks, and recipes for high country culinary endeavors. 

To help stretch that hard-to-stock pantry right now, Epstein says, "I'm all about doubling up right now. Cook once, eat twice. I made soup last week and froze half to eat later in the month." Plus, quesadillas and frozen waffles are her current go-tos, given that most leftovers (beans, chicken, meat, veggies) are perfect for quesadillas—and all ages can whip up their own frozen waffles. 

Not a wizard in the kitchen? Not to worry. Here's your delicious chance to support local business. A slew of restaurants are serving up curbside, drive-through dining. Just pick up the phone, order, prepay and pick up at the designated hour. Check out this list of local eateries: parkcityrestaurants.com. 

Workout Sans Gym

With the couch and TV remote in such close proximity, it's not always easy to stick to that exercise routine. Thankfully, we've got hundreds of miles of trails at our backdoor (mountaintrails.org)—and online access to fitness pros, such as local wellness coach and two-time Olympian Jillian Vogtli. "Start wherever you're at fitness-wise and make incremental steps toward becoming a fitter and healthier version of yourself," she advises. That initial step may be heading outside for a hike, snowshoe, or sledding—or using whatever you have at home to get in a workout (i.e., bodyweight exercises). For on-screen coaching, check out her  DIY workouts via You Tube (Jillian Vogtli) and Instagram (@Jillianv_ ). Among Vogtli's other tips are: hydrating, clearing up toxic relationships, making yourself a priority (doing whatever you need to do to recharge, even if it's just taking a long bath), eating "clean" (i.e., steering clear of processed food and moving toward organic and free-range as much as possible), unplugging, being "kind to yourself," and laughing. 

Stay well, Park City. 

 

 

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