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'Virtual' recreation activities available in City of Palmdale

A way to avoid 'cabin fever'

Isabell Rivera OW Contributor | 4/3/2020, midnight

Since the pandemic caused by the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) resulted in many outside venues, such as playgrounds and museums, to close doors, many families try to get creative from home to keep their children busy and happy at the same time.

The City of Palmdale's Parks and Recreation staff has compiled a list of virtual recreation ideas for residents to help overcome this time of social distancing and fight the cabin fever at home in a productive and interesting way that includes the whole family.

“Because recreation activities are such an important quality of life component in Palmdale, we wanted to continue to provide residents with an outlet and resources to explore different virtual and online activities from home,” Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer said.

The city's website www.cityofpalmdale.org/virturalrecreation has listed many activities with links to the websites.

Some of the recreation ideas include:

Chalk your walk, which involves drawing and writing encouraging messages on your driveway or sidewalk with chalk. As well as to take a walk and look for other messages or designs by your neighbors.

Take a virtual tour of the children's museum by going online. A number of amazing virtual museum tours are being offered online, including; the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History; the Natural History Museum London, Hintze Hall; and The Louvre.

Fun with science

Many zoos and aquariums have live cameras that can be tracked online, including: the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which has ten live cams to choose from; Aviary Cam - Peek into the aviary for an adventure in birdwatching; Coral Reef Cam - Follow busy tropical fishes in ¡Viva Baja!

Free art lessons for kids and adults are also available. The Art Sherpa offers over 1,000 different videos to follow along and create gorgeous acrylic artwork. PopArtDoodle featuring 3-minute videos for little artists. FaceDrawer helps kids create their own artwork using their favorite cartoon characters.

But that's not all. There's online storytime for kids and adults: MouseCircus.com - the official Neil Gaiman website where young readers can listen to his best-selling “The Graveyard Book” and “Coraline” on video, play free online games, and download fun activities.

Storyline Online is SAG-AFTRA Foundation's award-winning children's literacy website featuring children's favorite books narrated by the likes of Kevin Costner and Sarah Silverman.

FreeChildren'sStories.com is always free to read, offers a variety of stories by age, as well as stories in Spanish for kids.

There are also free space projects for kids and adults stuck at home. https://SpottheStation.nasa.gov is a tracking tool that allows you to look up your location from anywhere on earth, and find out when, where and how you can see the International Space Station pass overhead.

—NASA Science Space Place features lots of hands-on activities for kids. NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Teachable Moments for students.

And last but not least, catch a virtual concert: Billboard and NPR are keeping updated lists of online concerts, who's playing and where you can watch.

“As part of our Palmdale Cares initiative, the Virtual Recreation resource is designed to help our residents through the current situation with helpful and creative activities for everyone to enjoy,” Palmdale City Manager J.J. Murphy said.

For more information on what the city is doing during the coronavirus pandemic and for a list of helpful resources, visit www.CityofPalmdale.org/coronavirus.