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Safe Ways to Spend Time With Friends During a Pandemic

During this time of the pandemic, it’s still important to remember to stay safe, even when you’re spending time with your closest friends. Over the past month, we have been seeing a second wave in cases, making it more important than ever to keep your masks on and continue to social distance. While your safety and the safety of others should be one of the topic priorities in life right now, we need to remember that mental health is also a priority. Staying indoors can take a toll on everyone and we all need some type of human interaction. Here are some fun, easy, and safe ways to spend time with friends.

Netflix Party

Netflix Party, aka Teleparty, is a great way to watch new shows and movies with your friends. It is a Google Chrome extension that allows you to watch the streaming service simultaneously with friends. It synchronizes video playback and adds group chat to Netflix, Disney, Hulu and HBO. It only takes two steps to download and then you can watch your favorite movie or show while virtually spending time with friends.

An alternative option is Disney Plus Party. It is almost the same as Netflix Party, but used for Disney Plus. It is a great way to have a Disney movie night and bring out your inner child.

Game Night 

Game nights are always a good time when you spend them with those close to you. Services like Skype, Facetime, and Zoom are just a few ways to have a virtual game night! There are so many different types of virtual games for every type of person. You can play Bingo, Scattergories, or Cards Against Humanity with just  a simple google search. If you would rather not use a website, there are many other options where you can play without one, such as trivia and charades. This is a fantastic way to spend time with friends that will guarantee you some laughs!

 

Cooking Night

Eating dinner with friends is a fun bonding experience! Unfortunately, with the current situation, it can be difficult to find ways to bond. With services like Zoom, Skype, and Facetime it’s made easy to connect with those individuals. Take the opportunity to learn new recipes and catch up with people that you miss! Find a time each week to virtually cook with your friends because any type of interaction is super important.

Zoom Study Sessions 

Another way to utilize Zoom is by creating a study group. It is a way to keep each other motivated while getting schoolwork done. Have some music playing or just sit in silence; company is company. While in-person study groups are a thing of the past (for now), use this opportunity to meet in a way that will allow you to have some type of helpful interaction.

Hiking 
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Tired of being in front of a computer screen all day? A great alternative is by going on a hike with some close friends in your pod. It is a refreshing way to keep your distance, wear your mask, and spend some quality time with your people! Right now is a great time to do this activity with the leaves changing colors. Be sure to look up all the different hikes around Blacksburg as they level in difficulty and choose the best one(s) for you.

 

All of these activities can help you and your friends interact with each other while keeping everyone safe. While it is not the same as it was a year ago, I hope everyone can try their best to stay safe when choosing to spend time with people. By doing your part, you can help lower the spread of COVID-19, as well as, lower the number of cases. Always remember to wear your mask and stay six feet apart when around other individuals.

Kate Renz

Virginia Tech '22

Public relations major minoring in cinema. In my free time, I love to spend time with friends and watch movies!
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