Tour operators, travel writers, public relations people, and you travelers – we are all keeping our social distances and not going anywhere. But certain destinations are finding innovative ways to get people through it offering a helping hand, sending positive messaging and banding their citizens together.
Let’s take a look at some of the uplifting stories during this time of crisis…
Hand washing Stations in Berkeley, CA
The city has deployed over 25 handwashing stations around the city, primarily giving homeless citizens a way to clean up and take steps to avoid spreading the coronavirus.
Supporting Local Businesses in Charlotte, N.C.
It’s all about supporting local businesses, with a dedicated webpage encouraging denizens who are foodies, families, fitness fans, and fundraisers to remain active in the community. Think of it as the F-words that you can say without ruffling any feathers. The site details the offers, but essentially there are four key takeaways.
– The city encourages taking out food, tipping, and buying gift cards from local vendors.
– It shares entertainment options for families sheltering inside, including live stream events like bingo and science experiments.
– It urges fitness fans to attend virtual yoga and dance classes.
– It implores citizens to fundraise and give back, donating blood, food products, and money to charities citywide.
Virtual Fun in Chattanooga, TN
The Chattanooga Tourism Co. has launched Connect Chatt to bring people together digitally in Chattanooga and across the world who are practicing social distancing. The team will be sharing the community’s virtual experiences through social media using the hashtag #ConnectChatt and online at ChattanoogaFun.com/Connect. The social posts will include a way in which everyone can support Chattanoogans through virtual tipping, buying season passes, ordering takeout, etc.
The ConnectChatt virtual experience series kicked off on St. Patrick’s Day with a live performance from Stringer’s Ridge Band, which played Irish tunes from home via Facebook Live. Their virtual tip jar generated about as much as a normal gig, and they played to more than 10,000 people. Yesterday, the Tennessee Aquarium and Ruby Falls gave live tours.
Pizza, Beer and Music in Cincinnati, OH
Madtree Brewing Co. is bringing food to the streets of the Queen City to help keep spirits high in the city and assist in feeding all of those who must stay quarantined. Their draft truck will be providing curbside pizza and beer from 11am – 7pm.
ArtsWave is launching Mindful Music Moments, a partnership created by the Well in partnership with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati Opera. Members of the public can sign up for a free 10-week subscription to Mindful Music Moments, brief daily combinations of meditation and music. Mindful Music Moments is one of more than 100 projects and organizations funded through ArtsWave each year
Mita’s Restaurant has transformed into a relief center for any restaurant worker who has been laid off or has had a significant reduction in hours and/or pay. With the help of Makers Mark, the restaurant is offering help for those in dire need of food and supplies. Each night, it will pack hundreds of to-go dinners that will be offered to recently unemployed restaurant workers. Mita’s is also stocking supplies for those in need: diapers, baby food, non-perishable canned foods and cereals, toilet paper when available, paper towels, notebooks and pencils, aspirin and more.
Corner Stores in Long Beach, CA
Local restaurants are transforming into corner stores to help feed the population while table service has ceased. Breweries are baking goods and restaurants are rebranding as markets to help locals who would otherwise be waiting in long lines at the supermarkets.
Homeless Shelters in Oakland, CA
Two Oakland Hotels open their doors to house homeless people. While many individuals are sheltering in place, those without shelter are doing the best they can. To help reduce the risk of coronavirus spreading through the homeless population, the city is working with two hotels to offers stays of up to three months, a fantastic way to use tourism facilities that aren’t otherwise being used.
Free Grocery Vouchers in Seattle, WA
The city of Seattle giving out grocery vouchers to families, up to $800 per family. The distributions will total some 5 million dollars and will help families where parents have lost jobs because of coronavirus closures.
Stream To The Zoo in St. Louis, MO
For those stuck inside, the St. Louis Zoo has launched stlzootube to let viewers tune in from home and see what’s happening inside the city’s zoo. Although the Zoo may be closed to the public, its team wants to #BringTheStlZooToYou! Their first priority is the care and well-being of our animals, but when they can, they will be happy to add something fun & positive to your newsfeed. They also did a penguin tour on social media. It’s not just the zoo: St. Louis Aquarium hosted a morning breakfast event with their baby sloth Coconut, so look for more in the future.
Do you know of any businesses or destination that are helping the community? Do send us an email – info at goeatgive dot com – so we can feature them!