Summer is almost here, and I’m excited about finally enjoying some warm weather, but it’s going to be a summer like no other. With COVID-19 resulting in the closure of many businesses and Toronto attractions, the normal summer activities we enjoy will be severely modified.
My summer usually involves activities that may be in jeopardy this year such as going to our local public swimming pool once or twice a week, having dinner on a restaurant patio and going up north to the lake for sun, sand and swimming. In fact, some of my favourite activities have already been cancelled: Popular Toronto summer food festivals such as Taste of the Danforth and Toronto Taste have been postponed until next year, the CNE (Canadian National Exhibition) is not opening for the first time in 74 years and the Stratford Festival and the Shaw Festival will not be taking place. The Redpath Waterfront Festival on Toronto’s Harbourfront has also been postponed. I haven’t heard whether the Festival of South Asia, which takes place in my neighbourhood, has been cancelled for 2020.
Summer in Toronto is so short – three and a half months if we’re lucky. That’s why most Torontonians try and pack a lot of events into their summers. So, with that in mind, here are a few ways that I plan to enjoy summer 2020:
I plan to try some new summer recipes that we can enjoy on our patio. One of my favourite recipes to make for a summer evening is Beet, Quinoa, Feta, and Avocado Salad.
My garden and flower pots bring me so much joy. I am going to make sure I weed my garden regularly and deadhead my flowers so that they bloom all summer! I love sitting on our patio with a good book surrounded by nature’s glorious colours.
I have saved several books on my tablet that I have been meaning to read. I plan to read a few of these books this summer.
4. Visit a Park or Garden
I plan to go to two of my favourite gardens: Rosetta McClain Gardens and the Toronto Botanical Garden. I will attend during the week when it’s not as busy and so that I can social distance.
5. Dining on a Patio
Having lunch or dinner on one of the patios in nearby Little India or in The Beach – I will play this one by ear and go to a patio only if they are practising social distancing.
This is my favourite summer activity and I admit that it’s probably not going to be easy to swim this summer. I don’t even know whether our public pools will be open and if they are, they will definitely be limiting the number of people they allow into the pool. I might have to check out one of Toronto’s local beaches such as Bluffer’s Park or maybe I’ll invite myself to my stepmother’s cottage 🙂
7. Walking at the Boardwalk
I live within a four-minute drive of Toronto’s Beaches neighbourhood that boasts a 3.5 kilometre boardwalk along Lake Ontario. I plan to go for morning walks along the boardwalk during the week when it’s not as busy.
8. Staying at the Lake
We’ve been going to a hotel at Jackson’s Point for the past several years since they have a wonderful beach on Lake Simcoe. I hope to get away to Jackson’s Point for four or five days this summer, but I am aware that cottage country is discouraging visitors for fear that they won’t have enough resources in case people catch COVID-19. I don’t really want to attend a crowded beach in the current situation so we will play it by ear to see if it’s safe to go this year.
9. Go to the Driving Range or Golf Course
I haven’t been golfing in years, but last year, I did go to a driving range and I was surprised that my golf swing wasn’t in that bad shape. I plan to at the very least go to a driving range this summer and I may even golf nine holes if the courses aren’t too busy.
10. Perfect Your Hobby
I enjoy photography, but I don’t always have the time to improve my photography skills. With the extra time I will have this summer as a result of many attractions being closed, I plan to take advantage of this by visiting several gardens and parks and taking a lot of photos.
Those are my favourite ways to enjoy summer 2020. What fun things are you planning for this summer?