Top 11 Things to Do With Your Physically Distant Friends Online (Check for Updates)

Because Coronavirus

Dinosaur images by tee2tee & Jerzy Górecki

1. Our Virtual Wellness Studio

Updated weekly

2. Watch Parties

  1. The Shows Must Go On!
    The amazing Andrew Lloyd Weber has spoken and it is done! Universal has launched a new channel of stage-to-screen musicals starting with Weber’s classics for the first few weeks. Musical fans will also have access backstage and will be able to enjoy showtunes. Don’t wait too long to watch each musical! They will only be available for 48 hours, each Friday at 7pm GMT!
  2. HBO GO + HBO NOW
    Starting this Friday, April 3rd, HBO GO and HBO NOW will be streaming 500 hours of programming for free.
  3. Free opera streaming on The Metropolitan Opera’s website
    Due to the pandemic, every day that the stage is dark, The Met plans to stream an encore presentation from 7:30 p.m. EDT to 3:30 p.m. the next day. Turn on close captioning in case you need a translation. Check out the schedule here.
  4. Sand Marble Rallys
    Jelle’s Marble Rallys are addicting, and I have never rooted for an inanimate object as I have watching marbles race. The most exciting ones for me are the sand tracks. Have a random friend pick a random race, and after everyone picks their marble, press play and let the races (and bets) begin! Pick from the large library of marble races here.
  5. Prowalk Tours
    This is a great tour travel channel. The thing that’s different about these videos is there is no tour guide speaking so you can take in the sights, listen to all the sounds of the environment you’re “walking” in and even talk to each other during the experience. If you turn on the close caption option, there will be subtitles that pop up to tell you a bit more about what it is you’re seeing. Some of the videos in the channel offer 360° views which tend to be choppy. However, both the standard and 4k videos provide smooth and clear views. Figure out where you want to walk with your friends here. Other options without subtitles include BookingHunterTV and walking4k. For all of these, don’t forget to enlarge the screen to get a better experience.
    *Pro tip: For a real treat, search “4K Binaural”
  6. Winchester Mystery House
    Want a free tour of the weird and wonderful Winchester Mystery House located in San Jose, CA? Now’s your chance because this will only be available until the mansion can be open to the public again. Heiress, Sarah Winchester, believed that building this mansion would protect her from the ghosts of those shot by Winchester rifles. A secret passage, a seance room, and doors that lead to nowhere are just a taste of what you’ll see on this online tour.
  7. VR and 360° Paintings you can walk into
    You don’t necessarily need a VR headset to enjoy these videos. Right now, “walking” into a painting is novel enough to give you a unique and immersive experience.
    • Van Gogh: Cafe Terrace at Night | The Starry Night
    Salvador Dali
    • Claude Monet: Water Lilies
    • Paul Joseph Constantin Gabriël: In the Month of July
Take your friends on a trip into Salvador Dali’s paintings

3. Google Arts & Culture

Explore the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City, MO from your couch

4. Cryptovoxels

Featured here: MakersPlace Gallery in the Gangnam Neon Zone. Little known fact — MakersPlace also has a 2nd gallery in Doom District.

5. DJ Dance Parties

  1. Virtual Dance Party for Families
    For something fun and family-friendly check out Virtual Dance Party hosted by Brent Rosen and his family. Let’s do the Cha Cha Slide and Macarena together every Wednesday at 4pm PST!
  2. DJ Mel’s Dance Party
    Mel Cavaricci, better known as DJ Mel, spins all-inclusive music every Saturday at 6pm CST. Keep an eye out for the link to his next event here.

6. Improv Comedy

  1. Quarantine Improv Online!
    Looking to do improv games and scene work as well? Find the details on Facebook, or just invite your friends to drop into the Zoom Room here every Wednesday at 4pm PST | 7pm EST.
  2. Hideout Theatre
    The improv troupe Parallelogramophonograph, also known as PGgraph, is finding ways to perform improv online for your entertainment specifically at their Hideout Theatre channel. Check here for the latest schedule of shows. To voice chat, drop into Twitch with your friends via Watch2Gether or another screen-share platform.
  3. The Virtual Vortex Programming
    Interested in “live chats, solo performance, improv, music…” and more? Drop into their livestreams at 8pm CST, Thursdays through Sundays. Check out what’s next on the schedule here. Access these via a screen-sharing platform if you’d like to have the option to voice chat.

7. Virtual Open Mic

  1. Riptide Monday Night Open Mic
    Also called the “QuaranSing: Virtual Open Mic Night” is a weekly Monday open mic for singers hosted by The Riptide, San Francisco. Sign up here, and check out the performers here. This is on Facebook, so you can start a Watch Party with your friends whenever you click on the live-stream. If you want to voice chat with your friends, you’ll need to use a separate screen-share platform.
  2. Rivertown Poets: AMuseing Mondays
    Don’t let these words escape you! Sandra Anfang hosts a poetry open mic here on Zoom for you to enjoy every Monday at 6:15pm PST. And if you’re a poet, sign up quickly like you know it.

8. Zoomaroke

9. Virtual Concerts

  1. What the Folk!
    Join Jon Tyson and Sarah Songbird of the The Real Sarahs in an acoustic experience as they sing your requests every day at 5:00pm PST. If you’re a songwriter, keep an eye out for their announcement at the end of this week for more information on a songwriting group that Sarah will be starting!
  2. Billboard’s List of All the Big Name Artists’ Live Streams
    With all the music venues, stages, and bars closed, many big name artists are going live online. Billboard updates this list periodically so check here often for your favorite musician’s scheduled livestream.
  3. NPR’s List of Live Streams & Virtual Concerts
    Want to support the independent and lesser known artists? Check out this list for musicians, bands and performers from around the globe.

10. Social Games

  • House Party is a chat app that offers Heads Up, Quick Draw, and Chips & Guac
  • Telegram is a chat app that offers games through the use of bots. Depending on the game you want, type in one of the following: @unobot, @dreamersbot, @werewolfbot, and @spyfallbot. You can also private message @Gamee for a collection of more games.
  • Jackbox Games & Air Console are platforms with hundreds of games including more social games like: Friends Quiz, Never Have I Ever, Fibbage and Drawful.
  • There are online versions of card games that you can find online including Codenames & Cards Against Humanity
  • Puzzle adventure or point-and-click adventure games are great to do online with your friends. They are usually more accessible on your iPad or mobile phone. Basically one person will share the game on their phone to Zoom and will be the same person operating the game. Everyone else provides input in order to solve puzzles or makes decisions on what to do or say next. Great games to start with include: Fire Maples Games, Double Fine’s Broken Age & Grim Fandango Remastered, The Talos Principle, Fireproof Games’ The Room, & The House of Da Vinci

11. I Will Survive Virtual Happy Hour

Meme edited from https://paleontology.us/dinosaur-coronavirus-meme/
Original painting by John Gurche of Sue for the Field Museum in Chicago.
  1. Storytelling and Show & Tells — Got an awesome story to share? Bring it!
  2. Social-leaning activities and games — Friends Quiz, fARTwork, Cards And Humanity, Never Have I Ever on AirConsole or fun analog games like Forehead Detective, Heads Up, Kings Cup, 36 Questions and so on.
  3. Watch Parties and Movie Nights
  4. Karaoke, Dance & Listening Parties
  5. Open Mics, Variety Shows & Improv
  6. Virtual Open Studios / Art Shows
  7. Paint & Draw Nights
  8. And more!

Until We Hug Again

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Ann Marie Alanes

Pastry-loving stan of the NFT crypto art and music space, and your self-appointed stylist. I am not funny.