No sense pretending otherwise: Things are weird right now. Like, really, really weird. Between the pandemic and the unrest that has gripped our country after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, the next few months will be a challenge emotionally, physically and socially. Even experts don’t know how this summer is going to play out. The pandemic has forced the cancellation, postponement or alteration of all the events we tend to look forward to most in the Pikes Peak region: Territory Days, the Manitou Springs Wine Festival, live theater and music. And even our day-to-day lives — hiking, going to work, hanging out with our families — have changed. Maybe forever, but at the very least for the foreseeable future.
As we all try to responsibly and safely navigate the effect the pandemic has had on our communities — and responsibly and safely address the tension between law enforcement and angered citizens that has returned to the forefront of our consciousness — we need to be aware of how we interact with our environment, how we support local creatives, how we support each other.
With that in mind, we at the Indy have compiled some tips, resources, analyses and inspiring stories for our annual Summer Guide. We take a look at youth summer jobs, undoubtedly impacted by the rise in unemployment, how to be a responsible steward to our strained outdoor spaces, a safe and socially distant way to enjoy local creativity this summer, and more.
Frequent readers may notice certain staples of this issue are missing, like our calendar of summer events. And some perennial features, like a look at outdoor theater, have been omitted. We don’t know any better than you do when (or how) public events and large gatherings will return. But we do know that, no matter how far apart we are, we’re still all together in this — and whatever other challenges 2020 has in store for us.