For many people, one of the casualties of the COVID-19 pandemic has been travel plans. In March, businesses shut down, municipalities declared States of Local Emergencies (SOLEs), travel was suspended and people were asked to stay home. Many people – some of our reporters included – found themselves cancelling vacations and seeking refunds on plane tickets.
In Alberta, coronavirus cases are now trending downward and things are beginning to open back up. Municipalities are ending SOLEs and businesses are resuming operations. Even so, this summer will likely look different than what people are used to. Depending on your health condition and level of comfort, it's likely you won't venture very far away from home. Even those who don't feel inclined to stay home now find themselves facing a dearth of options to pass the time, with many attractions and tourist destinations still closed.
This doesn't mean summer 2020 has to be a disappointment. While international or even cross-Canada travel will be limited, you don't have to look far to find plenty of opportunities to be a tourist in your own backyard.
Rocky View County covers a vast and diverse area. As our reporters have covered news in the county, we've been privileged to see a great deal of it. Whether it's the scenic trail systems along the Elbow River in Bragg Creek, the historic foothills at Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park, the bustling lake in Chestermere, the wide-open prairies near Beiseker and Irricana or the numerous attractions in urban areas like Airdrie, Cochrane and Crossfield, there is still lots to see and do nearby.
In the absence of other summer plans, we'd encourage our readers to spend some time exploring their region. You can either use an app as your guide, like History Check, or spend some time getting lost and seeing where you end up. Spend some money and support local businesses that are still feeling challenged after months of closures. Most of all, take some time to fall more in love with the place you call home.