Safe activities for teens during COVID-19


Courtesy of Catherine Kutson

Catherine Kutson attended Artechouse in early November. The Crystalline exhibit features many different blue themed rooms that all include interactive pieces of artwork as well as many different photo opportunities.

By Ally Salzberg, Opinions Editor

Although it is in our best interest to stay home as much as possible, it can be very detrimental for people’s mental health. This elongated period of social isolation can result in depression, anti-socialness and anxiety. In normal times, we would usually just get out of the house to take our minds off of things, however, many people are scared to do things due to COVID-19. To help combat the feeling of isolation, here are five “COVID-safe” activities to do in the DMV.

1) Artechouse 

Artechouse is the home to a multitude of different interactive art exhibits that change throughout the year. Located near The Wharf, this makes for a perfect activity to do on a weekend or day off from school. Artechouse is keeping its customers safe by being vigilant prior to selling tickets. They make sure customers answer a series of questions that determine if the said customer has come into contact with anyone with COVID-19 or has any reason to believe they are sick. In addition to gathering this information before customers arrive, they also check customers’ temperature as soon as they walk in. 

Throughout the exhibit, staff members are making sure that everyone is keeping a safe distance and using the hand sanitizing stations spread throughout the rooms. The staff members are in face masks as well as face shields, which offers customers a feeling of safety. 

WCHS senior Catherine Kutson recently attended their “Crystalline” production which is inspired by the Pantone color of the year Classic Blue. 

“The exhibit was absolutely incredible,” Kutson said. “There were so many interactive portions of it, ensuring that you would be satisfied and occupied the entire one hour window that you have. I felt completely safe being inside the building as all of the employees and customers followed the CDC guidelines and maintained their distance.”

2) Shenandoah National Park

Although this is a bit of a drive, it is 100 percent worth the time and gas. Located in Virginia, the national park offers visitors beautiful views and lots of space to hike. Because there are so many different trails to choose from, it is very easy to stay secluded from people from a different party. If you were to end up on the same trail as others, you have a lot of room to move, which makes it possible to stay six feet apart. 

Even if you are not into hiking, you could take a drive along the Skyline Drive which takes you hundreds of miles out passing incredible views. Along the Skyline Drive, there are various overlooks that you can visit to bask in the beautiful outdoors. By choosing this safe option, you automatically reduce the chances of coming in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.

3) Glenstone Museum

This museum offers a perfect opportunity for people to get out of the house safely. The Glenstone Museum has contemporary art spread throughout the building, but if being inside is not what you want to do, they also have a magical garden with many different sculptures and beautiful exhibits to look at. Having this outdoor option attracts many visitors especially during times like this. 

“The entire museum feels so therapeutic and calm. It was an amazing experience and it felt like an escape from this terrifying reality,” WCHS senior Claire Yinger says. 

4) Bengies Drive-In Theatre

This throwback to the old days has been making a comeback for a couple of years now, but with the outbreak of COVID-19, Bengies Drive-In Theatre in the suburb of Baltimore, Middle River, has been an extremely popular destination. Containing the largest movie screen remaining in the United States, this nostalgic experience is one that will surely impress kids and adults. By having customers enjoy the film from the comfort of their own cars, the theatre maintains proper social distance as well as extinguishes the risk of transmission via contact! Although it is a bit of a journey to get there, the magical experience is totally worth it. 

5) Outdoor Ice Skating

As the holiday season quickly approaches, so does the desire for doing holiday traditions. One tradition that we can continue doing during the pandemic is going outdoor ice skating. A classic destination for outdoor ice skating is Rockville Town Square. According to The Moco Show, “the Rockville Town Square ice rink is currently being assembled and is expected to open in early December.” They will be following the CDC guidelines regarding social distancing, mask requirement, and capacity,  and will only open, “following approval from the county.”

As the numbers continue to increase regarding COVID-19 cases, it is important that we continue to stay vigilant and practice social distancing and mask-wearing. Utilizing the safe spaces around us, we can all enjoy the beautiful weather and get some peace of mind during this trying time.