We’ve already watched every episode of Tiger King, scrolled through Instagram to the point of the “you’re all caught up” message, and have regrettably experimented with at-home haircuts. COVID 19 has swept the globe and we’re in this together, staying at home and saving the world one introverted dream at a time. By now you probably want to get back to civilization (no, your spouse doesn’t count) and you’re going a little stir crazy. So instead of pondering if you’re in a Margaret Atwood novel, let’s all take a much-needed distraction break from all the earthquakes and infectious diseases. To do so we’ve compiled some entertaining things to do in Salt Lake City from the comfort of your own home.
Broaden Your Horizons
Let’s be honest. Binge-watching Netflix while munching on puffy Cheetos is not the most productive way to spend your time in quarantine. Although we most certainly approve, here are some ways to expand your skillset and knowledge–after all the binge-watching is finished of course.
Learn a Language:
Remember when you went to Rome that one summer and tried to get by with your basic language knowledge of “grazie and ciao”? Now that you have an excessive amount of time, you can surprise yourself by learning a new language besides just glancing at that Italian dictionary for ten minutes. Rosetta Stone is offering a seven-day free trial and free courses for K-12 students, given the school closures–as if we didn’t entice you enough already.
Not only can plants help filter the air (goodbye dirty viruses), but let’s be real, they look pretty too. Nurseries like Cactus & Tropicals and Western Gardens are offering delivery and curbside pick-up, so let’s get to gardening.
To get those feel-good, do-good juices flowing, help someone in need. From volunteering to donating to even purchasing a mask, Utah has come together as a community and you can be a part of it. Join the Salt Lake Valley Covid Mutual Aid team or Utah Food Bank and drive, buy groceries, or donate. If you’re in need, these are great resources too.
Date Night Staying in
Date nights may have previously consisted of luxurious restaurants and attending concerts at The State Room, but now we’ll need to get a little more creative. To inspire the romance and spice up your quarantine, here are some invaluable date night ideas (PJs and messy bun optional).
To zone out and forget about the pandemic happening outside, the Salt Lake Film Society is streaming movies, and many Sundance Films made it to streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime (the guide here). Cuddle up, pour a glass of wine, and pop some popcorn. You’ll feel like you’re at the movies, but with comfier clothes.
Online Museums and Exhibits:
Board Games & Apps:
Bonding over a game of Connect 4 or Jenga will bring back a little nostalgia in your life and it could start a little friendly competition between you and yours. Not excited about wandering down to the cobwebbed-filled basement to find the board games? You can load apps on your phone like Words With Friends or Heads Up– oh, the joys of modern conveniences.
Cook a Fancy Meal at Home:
Like we just mentioned, your meal may not turn into the masterpiece you envisioned, so order some pasta primavera from your favorite Salt Lake restaurant (here's a list of local restaurants offering takeout and curbside), light some candles, get dressed up, and have an intimate dinner at home. If the weather’s real nice, you can pretend you’re in the pre-COVID world and set up a picnic in your backyard.
Pampering isn’t just for girl’s night. After all the face-pillow creases and days without showering, you and your partner probably need a skin refresh. The green facemasks and cucumber eyes won’t scare anyone since it’ll just be the two of you, so have no shame in a little couple’s spa day. Maybe you’ll even get a nice massage out of it if you ask nicely.
Listen to the Record Player/Music:
Live out that rom com dream and create your own spontaneous dance number to the classic sound of an old vinyl record. There’s nothing more romantic than slow dancing to Frank Sinatra in your living room. Don’t fret if you missed out on the trend of buying a record player, because if you don’t have one, there’s always Spotify.
Things to Do with Kids
After your impromptu homeschool lessons you’re going to need some exciting activities to do with the kiddos (for you and for them). Who’s appreciating teachers more than ever right about now?
Watching Animals Live:
The Hogle Zoo is posting Facebook live videos everyday with check-ins at various exhibits. So you can say hello to the bears and elephants virtually. But if birds are more your jam, check out the variety of live cams through the National Audubon Society website. From a bald eagle’s nest to a Panama fruit feeder cam, you and your kids can learn about bird species from around the world.
Arts & Crafts:
Time to Google “how to make slime” and bring back all those 5th grade science art projects we all remember so well. From toothpick towers to glitter art–okay, maybe exclude the glitter because we know how fun glitter is to clean–it’s time to hang way too many refrigerator drawings.
Local businesses are hurting from this sudden need for isolation and lack of happy hours and coffee dates. If you’re currently working, let’s order our typical Friday night sushi, curbside (win win), and purchase gift cards for friends and family. We’re pretty sure it would brighten anyone’s day to receive a hand written card and gift card to Pig in a Jelly Jar right about now.
Curbside Pickup & Takeout:
Instead of calling every restaurant in town you can scroll this readily available list of restaurants offering curbside and takeout. We even found an article from Gastronomic SLC listing all the meal deals, so you don’t have to feel guilty about that extra order of spring rolls.
One of the simplest ways to support local is to listen to our beloved radio stations like KCPW 88.3, KUER 90.1, or KRCL 90.9. You’ll be able to switch between NPR and a mix of independent music throughout your day.
Virtual Events and Activities:
Remember that kid in school who would zoom in on every building imaginable on Google maps during AP calculus? Okay, you can admit you were that kid. Well, a new world of scrolling fun has been bestowed upon us. Go on virtual tours of overlooks (no exercise needed), restaurants, heritage centers, zoos, and all the places you’d want to see on a Salt Lake Virtual Tour.