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8 Detroit activities you can do from home

While coronavirus has us all indoors, here are a few ways you can have fun and engage with the city

Exterior of a concrete building that says “Detroit Historical Museum” in red lettering.
The Detroit Historical Museum and other local institutions have huge digital collections.
Getty Images

Now that a ‘stay at home’ order has been instituted in Michigan to stall the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), people are going to be spending a lot of time indoors. Though you can leave to perform essential duties or spend a little time outdoors, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has directed people to otherwise remain in their homes.

When not working remotely or homeschooling kids, lots of people are going to be looking for creative alternatives for entertainment and recreation beyond streaming yet another Netflix show. And even though we can’t go outside, many of us will still want to engage with Detroit and its people.

So here is a list of eight activities you can do from home while still feeling like you’re in Detroit.

What are you doing from home? Let us know in the comments section and we’ll update the piece.

Check out a museum’s digital collection

While not as stimulating as seeing it in person, lots of Detroit museums offer extensive digital archives for visitors to browse.

The Detroit Institute of Arts has over 60,000 high-quality images online that can be sorted by department, artist, and medium.

The Detroit Historical Museum has free educational resources for youth of various ages, a YouTube channel with videos and playlists on a number of subjects, and over 45,000 records in its digital collection.

Detroit Public Library cardholders can access its digital collection, as well as download eBooks and audiobooks, stream movies, and more. The Henry Ford Museum also has tons of digital artifacts.

Museums can still be a fantastic resource.

Virtually tour a home

In the absence of open houses, Detroit realtors finding creative ways to show off homes on the market. Several realtors we’ve spoken to in recent days have said they’re offering 3D tours and digital showings with an agent in the home, connecting to potential buyers through Google Hangouts or FaceTime.

If you see a house you like, reach out to the realtor to see if they offer this service. More likely than not, they will.

Take a wellness class

Lots of local fitness centers and yoga studios are offering online classes for their members.

Others are providing free content for anybody to access. Mindful Detroit is hosting online meditations and yoga classes. Citizen Detroit has a mix of both free and rental content. Check in with your favorite gym or trainer to see what they offer.

What tutorials are you watching to keep you healthy?

Learn a new recipe

Detroit chefs like Jonathan Kung of Kung Foods and Quiana Broden of Cooking with Que have been regularly posting recipes and videos of meals you can make from home.

Read a book about Detroit

We’re currently working on a list of essential Detroit reading. In the meantime, check out this list put together from local author Anna Clark which gives a solid rundown of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry written by Detroit authors or featuring Detroit.

You could also join a book club. Planet Detroit and Book Suey are hosting an environmental-themed one.

Catch a performance

Performers around Detroit are recording their sets or streaming them live. Here are a few examples: DJ Sara Aldrige of Nothing Elegant has been uploading sets of her dance “parties.” Willis Show Bar is hosting an online fundraiser with live music to support staff and performers. The Planet Ant Theatre has been live-streaming various kinds of entertainment every night at 7 and 8 p.m.

Amazingly, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra has made dozens of its past performances free to watch for the duration of the outbreak.

“Attend” a film festival

Though theaters are closed, the Ann Arbor Film Festival lives on. For its 58th edition, the film festival will be live-streaming the entire event—including movies, filmmaker Q&As, and DJ sets—for free.

The festival starts March 24 at 4 p.m.

“Visit” your favorite building

Some places in Detroit can be visited with surprising authenticity using your digital device. Buildings like the Whitney, Fillmore, and David Whitney Building have panorama views from a number of angles. And if you have a VR device, Visit Detroit has filmed several spots you can tour by video in 3D.

Detroit Public Library

5201 Woodward Avenue, , MI 48202 (313) 481-1300 Visit Website

Detroit Institute of Arts

5200 Woodward Avenue, , MI 48202 Visit Website

David Whitney Building

1 Park Avenue, , MI 48226

Detroit Historical Museum

5401 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48202 Visit Website