Photo courtesy of Yobo Wang ’22

SAMARA BENZA, Features Editor — Campus definitely looks different this semester than ever before. But, as everyone in administrative roles has pointed out, community is still important at Denison. So, here are some fun socially distant activities that allow us all to cultivate community and stay safe so we all can stay at our home on the Hill for the entire semester: 

  1. Yes/No Story Riddles – Riddles like these have always been a staple in my friend group. But they’re also great conversation starters and filled with lots of laughs. The premise is someone explains a situation, such as “A man walks into a restaurant and orders a glass of water. The waiter pulls a gun out and points it at the man. The man thanks the waiter and walks out of the restaurant.” Then, everyone must ask yes or no questions to figure out how/why the situation happened. These can go on for hours or a quick 15 minutes depending on who’s in the group and how hard the riddle is. 
  2. Puppy live stream – It’s like the Puppy Bowl but all year long! Check it out here. Grab some friends together, sit out on A-quad, and laugh at some cute puppies.
  3. Book club – The reader in me couldn’t pass up this opportunity to promote reading and connecting in books. Now, we don’t all have to pull out Jane Austen and read Emma or Pride and Prejudice (though if you do, hit me up) but getting a group together and reading a short story can be just as fulfilling. Amidst the abundance of academic pages we read for classes, a little fun, light reading can be fun. It provides a release from the stress of classes and leads to so many interesting conversations. 
  4. Picnic – Since so much of our food is now take-out, picnics are a fantastic way to hang out with friends while soaking up the Granville sunshine (we know we will all be missing it in a few months). 
  5. Painting party – This one requires a little more planning but is well worth it. Everyone grab some brushes, paint, and a canvas of your choice (printer paper, some massive leaves from the trees, canvas, or even a napkin), and sit outside and paint with friends. It’s a great source of stress relief and will provide some great decoration for your dorm room. 
  6. Geocaching – Perfect to get into nature, geocaching puts your navigation skills to the test, rewarding you with a fun package to open up at the end. There are lots of geocaching locations in Granville within walking distance of campus. Just look up “Geocaching Granville, Ohio” and lots of options will pop up. 
  7. Make a playlist – Music is something we as Gen-Z can all connect to and can help connect us. For this, you can either create a playlist for someone based on songs you think they’ll like and they do the same for you, or you work together to create one massive, jam-friendly playlist. Either way, listening to the playlist with the other person(s) is half the fun too!

Frances McMillan, a sophomore from Boston, thinks that “the relationships might even grow stronger because of the weird circumstances.” We can all work together to make this semester good. We just have to be a little creative.