From hilariously creative ways to enforce social distancing, to novel efforts to support the restaurant industry, show appreciation for healthcare workers, and stave off boredom at home, these are Journy's top uplifting stories of the month.
1. Yankee Stadium will be turned into a drive-in movie, concert, and festival venue this summer
Drive-ins are officially making a comeback with the launch of Uptown Drive-In, a social distancing-friendly carnival/festival that will take place every weekend starting in July in the parking lot of Yankee Stadium. On the agenda? Movies, live concerts that stream from a PA system to visitors' car radios, car-side dining, interactive games, raffles, and giveaways. Read more here.
2. This German café has come up with a hilarious (but effective) way to enforce social distancing
Everyone knows by now that the golden number of social distancing is six—that's how far apart experts estimate we need to stand from each other to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. But without a visual aid, it's hard to gauge that distance and know if you're actually six feet apart from your neighbor. Enter pool noodle hats, a hilarious invention that Café Rothe in Schwerin, Germany dreamt up to help their patrons social distance properly.
3. Journy has officially launched online experiences with world-class chefs and bartenders
Until we can safely venture out and begin to travel again, Journy has been working around the clock to launch new classes that bring the spirit of travel home. Join Eleven Madison Park's Head Bartender, Matt Hunter, for his Cocktail Happy Hour. Or have Chef Diego Moya of Racines NY guide you through the process of cooking a new recipe based on what you have on hand in your fridge/pantry. Creative Culinary Director of Eleven Madison Park, Josh Harnden, is even drawing from his extensive travels to host an international-inspired cooking class.
In addition to supporting a great cause (each host has the option to dedicate a portion of proceeds to staff relief funds), these experiences are fun, with zero pretension or stuffiness. They’ll help you learn a new skill or two, escape that #QuarantineCooking recipe rut, and bond with whoever it is you’re at home with—or those you’re far away from.
4. Stonehenge will livestream its summer solstice event for the world to watch
Mark your calendars for June 21, which is when Stonehenge will livestream its spectacular summer solstice event for free via Facebook and YouTube. The event, which draws upwards of 10,000 people in any given year, showcases the sun rising behind its Heel Stone (marking the entrance to the ancient circle) as rays of sunlight flood into its center on the start of the longest day of the year.
“We hope that our [livestream] offers an alternative opportunity for people near and far to connect with this spiritual place at such a special time of year” said Stonehenge director Nichola Tasker. “And we look forward to welcoming everyone back next year.”
5. As Copenhagen reopens, so will Noma—but as a wine bar
On Thursday May 21 at 1pm, Noma will be re-opening its doors as a no-reservations, drop in-only wine and burger bar. Guests will be seated in the outdoor space, which overlooks the beautiful gardens in Christiania. The menu will be simple—one meat and one vegetarian burger, plus wine.
In an Instagram post, founder René Redzepi writes, "What crazy and uncertain times. Copenhagen is about to reopen its restaurants. And so will Noma. However before we reopen Noma as we know it...we want to be open for all. We need to heal, So let’s have a glass and a burger, you’re all invited."
6. Some of NYC's best restaurants are releasing their recipes—all for a good cause
Founder of The Rosé Project, Kristin Tice Studeman, has just released a new e-cookbook, Serving New York, which contains more than 45 easy, pantry-friendly recipes from the likes of Olmstead, King, Momofuku, Charlie Bird, Llama Inn, the NoMad, and more. 100% of proceeds from the e-book, which costs $20, will go to ROAR (Relief Opportunities for All Restaurants) x Robin Hood’s restaurant relief fund to provide cash assistance to NYC restaurant workers.
7. Qatar Airlines is giving away 10,000 free flights to healthcare workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic
In honor of International Nurses Day on May 12, Qatar Airlines announced they would be giving 10,000 roundtrip tickets 100,000 healthcare workers (including not just nurses, but also doctors, medical practitioners, lab technicians, clinical researchers, and pharmacists) around the world who are on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Each country will receive a daily allocation of tickets based on population size.
“We at Qatar Airways are incredibly grateful for the commitment and hard work of healthcare professionals around the world who looked after people in these times of uncertainty,” said Akbar Al-Baker, Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, in a statement. "Their heroic display of kindness, dedication, and professionalism has saved hundreds of thousands of lives around the world."
8. With the help of Alaska Airlines, hardworking healthcare workers will be the first to enjoy the season's first catch of prized Copper River salmon
The free meals were delivered to over 200 healthcare workers at Swedish Medical Center - Ballard as a show of appreciation for their heroic work on the frontlines of the pandemic. The event came together with support from Alaska Airlines, various seafood distributors (namely Trident Seafoods, Ocean Beauty Seafoods, and Copper River Seafoods), Copper River Marketing Association, and Seattle chef Tom Douglas. An additional 300 meals were sold at the Ballard Warehouse Kitchen—with all proceeds benefiting Food Lifeline.
"I love everything about Copper River salmon," said chef Douglas. "I love the richness of its delicate flesh and flavor. Its very short season makes it a true delicacy. I am glad we get to share it with our health care workers and the Greater Seattle community."
9. An 11-year-old Ohio girl challenged her mail carrier to an ongoing mailbox game of tic-tac-toe
After learning online that people were leaving notes and treats for delivery drivers, Julia Hughes, a fifth grader from Hilliard, Ohio, decided to tape a hand-drawn tic-tac-toe board ("O=You X=me," she wrote) to the inside of her family's mailbox as a creative way to combat boredom while playing a game—from afar—with her mail carrier.
“It makes me smile. It’s a nice thing to know she cares,” said LaTeasha Wright, who recently became a mail carrier after more than two decades working in the medical field. “Every day after I make my “O,” I give a little wave and a smile in case they’re peeking out the window.”
10. London's top Michelin-starred Indian restaurant will soon be available for delivery
Starting May 22, Gymkhana's contemporary Indian cuisine will be available for delivery via the Supper app. But this is no ordinary delivery. The high-end restaurant, which has held a Michelin star since 2014, will be taking advantage of custom-made bikes and insulated bags to prevent the food from being tossed around en route. What's more, they're offering a virtual tour for diners to explore the stunning interior space—from the north Indian architecture to the sepia photographs lining the walls. Read more here.
Craving an extra dose of good news today? Read up on our top stories from last month, which are guaranteed to make you smile.