Since COVID-19 hit, the arts have taken a major toll with the lack of in-person activities. Concerts and shows have been cancelled, sales have been postponed and productions have been put on hold. However, there are several creative ways that companies and organizations have been putting together to keep arts alive while keeping everyone safe.  

Tuesday Night Thing

Here in Lincoln County, the Lincoln City Cultural Center has put together a creative quarantine program with live classes, concerts and kits for kids, adults and family groups. Anyone can stop by the Lincoln City Cultural Center and grab a kit in their new Art Kit Workshop space. Previous kits have taught how to make Sandpiper figurines and kite mosaics, among many other crafts. They have put up a “walk-a-story” along their north back fence, as well as started up Tuesday Night Thing from 4-7 where local artists, farmers and restaurant owners gather. Like the PAC Show, the LCCC and The Bijou theater created the Lincoln City Drive-In, which will continue through the end of August. The LCCC is also streaming “Quarantunes” featuring artists from all over the world.  

Joann Fabrics in Lincoln City is offering free kits to sew masks that are available through their “Take and Make” masks program. So far, through the help of sewers across the country, Joann Fabrics has donated 230,792,702 masks to hospitals. 

At the Newport Performing Arts Center, they have several programs going, including two summer theaters they are running online. The OCCA Summer Theater Intensive started July 20th and will continue until August 27th, and the OCCA Online Summer Drama Club began July 6th and will run until August 28th.  

The Newport Visual Arts Center is hosting the Oregon Coast Online Art Show where artists from around the county and even from afar are featuring their work in a virtual show. The show began on May 29th and will continue until September 7th.  

There is an abundance of podcasts and websites that are offering free courses in learning a new language such as DuoLingo and Radio Ambulante. HelloTalk is a language app that can be downloaded for free. Google Arts and Culture has put together tours of museums and art galleries from around the world for people to tour virtually while at home.   

For those wanting to get away from computers and social media, activities such as going for a drive on Otter Crest Loop, taking a walk down the beach or playing a round of golf at a course like Agate Beach or Olalla Valley Golf Club can take your mind off of social distancing. This is also a great time to go fishing at a place like Big Creek Reservoir or crabbing in the Siletz Bay. There are many beaches that allow for adequate social distance to walk on as well as hiking trails such as the Horse Creek Trail in Seal Rock in the Drift Creek Wilderness.  

Another way to cut the computers but stay inside is to work through the Newport Library Centennial Book Challenge, with the goal to read 100 books, including e-Books and audiobooks that can be checked out digitally from the library from September 2019 to December 2020. Newport Library is also hosting a summer reading program with a gardening kit for August. Prizes, logs and kits are exchanged through the Library Take Out program. If coming in a vehicle, you are to call the library (541-265-2153) to say you have arrived, and a staff member will place your items in the trunk of your car. If you arrive for a walk-up Take Out, call the library (541-265-2153) to tell them you are there or knock on the North side of the building on the door that says “Staff Entrance”. After knocking, they ask to step back 10 ft. Librarians are available from Tuesday to Thursday from 12-5:30 PM. 

Whether crafting, streaming, walking or reading, there are many ways that the arts have adapted to this new normal. During this time of COVID-19, they have offered great ways to unwind and stay connected throughout quarantine.