We all know what’s missing this year. Pretty much everything that is fun. So let’s use our ingenuity and find a few workarounds.

If you’re missing the fun of baseball games at Vet’s Stadium, you’re not alone. You can still show your support for the Cedar Rapids Kernels at their Home Run for Hunger Donation Drive tomorrow, Saturday Augus 1st, from 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. at the Veterans Stadium parking lot.

The team is collecting nonperishable food items with their partners from First Federal Credit Union for HACAP’s food reservoir.

It’s a drive-through and contact-less drop off, but I’m sure you’ll see plenty of familiar faces smiling from behind their masks to graciously accept your non-perishable food donations.

I really missed the Tanager Place Summerfest fundraiser this year at the Collins Sports Complex. It was especially sad not to see all those great folks with their classic car show. My friends from Eddie’s Rod and Custom, and John the unofficial MC have been part of this summer tradition for years, along with the terrific crew from Master Tool and Manufacturing (MTM) in Hiawatha.

So in honor of those memories let's hop in the car on Saturday evening and join the unofficial Car Cruise on First Avenue from Lindale Mall out to Williams Boulevard. You’ll see scores of classic cars, custom rides, and sleek machines. Maybe a few old clunkers, too.

And then on Sunday morning, send a donation to Tanager Place to help keep them afloat during this difficult time.

We will all miss the official Irish Fest in Waterloo this weekend but they’re hosting a virtual fest online starting tonight, Friday, July 31. So pour yourself a couple of fingers of Jameson's, make up a little corn beef and cabbage or a Reuben sandwich, and tune in for some traditional Irish music from bands like Wylde Nept on the Irish Fest Facebook page.

If you’re still missing the fun of being in a large group of people, try something that I see people in our neighborhood doing. Invite four or five friends over for a parking lot party in your driveway at home. A small gathering of good friends properly distanced creates laughter and fun and positive memories that can help us through these tough times.  Helpful tip: bring some extra drinks, some snacks to pass and leave the politics at home.

All of these activities can be shared with just a few close friends. Social distancing and isolation aren’t normal behaviors and staying connected is good for the soul.

It’s strange because we really are all in this together. But the aspect of this pandemic may make us feel more isolated than ever. We can still have fun and we can still be civil towards one another. All we have to do is find a few workarounds.

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