Latest Update: The Stay at Home Order is extended to May 15, 2020. Wearing face masks when in public is now included in the order.
The coronavirus has majorly impacted our daily lives. It is recommended to take precautions and follow safety protocols as outlined by the World Health Organization— including wearing masks and face coverings. Another practice to implement is social distancing. This term means to physically maintain at least a 6 ft distance between yourself and others.
Staying at home is recommended if you are feeling sick, otherwise, the official Stay at Home Order does allow for spending time in nature. "Take a walk, ride your bike, hike, jog and be in nature for exercise — just keep at least six feet between you and others." For those of you searching for things to do during this time, we’ve got a list of social distancing activities that you can do in Monroe-West Monroe! Get some fresh air at these locations:
Phone: (318) 387-1114
Any list of ours featuring outdoor destinations includes this sparkling gem. While the pier is closed for construction and the visitor center is now closed, the nature trails and other parts of the refuge remain open from dawn to dusk. You’ll get glimpses of wildlife throughout this area, and we can confirm that woodland creatures do not carry the virus. If you have your own kayaks or fishing boats, you can still access the lake. However, rentals are not available at this time.
Phone: (318) 372-8801
That being said, H2 GO Paddle is currently offering kayak rentals at their place. They've confirmed the ability to sanitize their gear for this activity! Pick up your rentals, then head to the Ouachita River or Bayou Desiard. Get out on the water to reeeeeally put some distance between you and people. Make sure to pack snacks, water, and sunscreen- in that order.
Phone: (318) 396-4016
160 acres of park with forested areas, sprawling walking trails, and a large dog park. This park features playgrounds, so be mindful of sanitizing if your children play on these. However, large open spaces provide room for other activities. Bring a kickball for a competitive kick or throw a frisbee in your bag to enjoy. Multiple tennis courts and a sand volleyball court give more options for play!
Phone: (318) 322-8903
This stunning 70-acre forest and wetland park has multiple overlooks and a 1 mile trail for jogging, walking, or relaxing. A scenic lake sits in the middle with native cypress trees draped with Spanish moss.
Take a stroll along the levee, hit the tennis courts, or head to the open field for sports! This park is located next to the Ouachita River in Monroe, and has plenty of options for things to do while putting the recommended 6 ft between you and everyone else.
The Herons on the Bayou organization just released their official map of all 51 herons! Snap a photo with 'em all! Load your healthy loved ones in the car, keep your hand sanitizer close, and go find as many as you can. Each one is a stunning piece of art that'll make you proud to call the 318 area your home.
These are just a few suggestions for those who are healthy and looking for things to do in Monroe-West Monroe. As this situation evolves rapidly, please remain updated. We recommend contacting these businesses ahead of your arrival for updates.
You can see our official statement on COVID-19 here, and we will be posting updates as we are informed.
To see local restaurants that are operating during this time, check our list here!