Last weekend, the Fourth Avenue Street Fair didn’t grace the avenue.
Instead, it went virtual.
Posted on the Fourth Avenue Merchants Association website, fourthavenue.org featured a list of vendors that were set to bring their art, jewelry, clothing and food to the annual fair.
You couldn’t indulge in any funnel cake or frozen lemonade, but the clickable list gave street fair “attendees” an opportunity to scan through vendors’ websites and take home anything that caught their eye.
The street fair isn’t the only activity that has gone virtual since coronavirus concerns shut down many events and businesses across the city.
Reid Park Zoo is closed until at least March 31. But to continue educating the public on the zoo’s animals, staff have started “#BringingTheZooToYou” across the zoo’s website, reidparkzoo.org, and social media platforms.
With the virtual initiative comes behind-the-scenes videos and photos, downloadable activity pages and animal facts.
“A big part of it is everyone is pretty stressed at the moment and struggling with not being able to go do things outside of their homes,” says Reid Park Zoo marketing and communications supervisor Chelo Grubb. “Being able to still connect people to nature even though they’re safe on their couch is really important to us — and continuing to remind people there are good things out there.”
The zoo posts on social media at least three times a day.
Animal lovers can also watch live cameras of five habitats — the elephants, giraffes, grizzly bears, lemurs and lions — from the comfort of their homes. The livestreams are available all day on the zoo’s website.
Beyond the zoo, here are a handful of other Tucson spots that have gone virtual — for now, at least — to keep you connected while social distancing.
BRINGING THE MOVIE THEATER HOME
If you’ve already binge-watched everything on Netflix, The Loft Cinema has made its Arthouse Cinema available for streaming.
Here’s how it works: Once you buy a virtual ticket for $12 at loftcinema.org, you’ll be sent a link and password to stream the film.
Half of the revenue will go toward The Loft’s operational costs and its employees, with the other half benefiting the film’s distributor.
Currently available for streaming: “Saint Frances,” “Corpus Christi,” “Bacurau,” and “Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands.” More films will be available on Friday, March 27.
FOR YOUR ARTISTIC SIDE
Creative Juice Art Bar is packaging art supplies for pickup and livestreaming classes.
The livestreams are free to watch on Creative Juice’s Facebook page, facebook.com/creativejuiceartbar.
If you’re in need of supplies, art kits cost $12 and include a canvas, brush and paints. It’s recommended to let them know ahead of time if you’ll need a kit.
Art studio Arte Bella is creating YouTube painting tutorials and is selling art kits for families of four. Kits include canvases, paint, brushes, cups, plates and Kraft paper for $49. Additional kits are 10% off.
Pickup is available by appointment only, but if you live within 10 miles of their Park Place Mall location, they’ll deliver the kits to your doorstep for free. Visit artebellapainting.com for more information.
Creative Kind is offering online workshops in beginners art journaling, embroidery, water color and macrame wall hangings for $15 each. For more information, go to tucne.ws/ckworkshops
NO GYM? NO PROBLEM
Dance and fitness studio Floor Polish is streaming classes online — from cardio to ballet to belly dancing. The price of classes vary, but isn’t above $7. Classes can be streamed at floorpolishdance.com.
If you’re more into yoga, Sumits Yoga is hosting free yoga classes on Instagram every day. Other classes require you to sign up — more information can be found at sumitsyogatucson.com.
Natalie Comerford Dadey, local pilates instructor and exercise therapist, has started posting at-home fitness videos on YouTube: tucne.ws/1env
OTHER TUCSON SPOTS TO CONNECT TO AT HOME
- Tucson Botanical Gardens has a live cam of their butterfly exhibit. Visit tucsonbotanical.org for more information.
- Toy store Mildred & Dildred is hosting virtual story times at facebook.com/mildredanddildred
- Don Guerra of Barrio Bread fame is teaching bread-making lessons online. Learn to make sourdough bread from scratch for $30, or take a free pizza crust-making course. Go to breadlessons.com for more information.
Star reporter Johanna Willett contributed to this story. Contact reporter Gloria Knott at firstname.lastname@example.org or 573-4235. On Twitter: @gloriaeknott.
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