Healthy curbside business at Rye Beach Pharmacy
BY JANICE LLANES FABRY
The people of Rye are all about engagement, whether we’re collaborating, volunteering, exercising, shopping, dining out, or meeting for coffee or drinks. As a result of the looming pandemic, however, it’s as if we’ve been ensnared in a dire game of freeze dance and the music has indefinitely stopped.
In limbo, we find ourselves unwillingly acquiring knowledge of Covid-19, Wuhan, CDC test kits. We’ve discovered that we inadvertently touch our faces more times than we can count, and our hands are germ-ridden unless we scrub them for as long as it takes to sing “Happy Birthday” twice. Terms like “social distancing”, “community spread”, and “flattening the curve” have slipped into our vernacular.
What a relief to know that until the music starts up again, our resilient community is not skipping a beat. We’re choreographing our way around shutdowns and layoffs, suspensions and cancellations, shortages and self-isolation. Organizations, schools, and merchants are coming up with thoughtful ways of keeping us all connected and hopeful.
Remote instruction has begun in Rye schools to ensure learning continues. Google classroom streamlines the collaborative process between teachers and students who have taken home all the resources they need.
The path to Playland Park, one of Rye’s many sources of inspiration
Rye Neck Superintendent Dr. Barbara Ferraro noted, “The work that teachers assign is not meant to replace the classroom experience, but to bolster it, reinforce it, and even extend it.”
Both Rye Neck and Rye City Schools continue to provide meals to those students participating in the free and reduced meal program. Grab and Go breakfast and lunch can be picked up curbside at Rye Neck MS/HS campus from 9-9:30 and 12-12:30 and at Rye High from 8-12.
The Rye Youth Council invites high school and college students to a virtual 30-minute mindfulness session every weekday from 4-4:30. Led by local mom and mindfulness instructor Julie Engeran, students learn to pause, take a breath, and quiet their minds. The goal is to help them cope with the ever–evolving news of the novel coronavirus and the anxiety that accompanies sudden changes in daily routines.
Our houses of worship have suspended all services and meetings, but, alleluia, technology offers divine intervention. As Rye Presbyterian Pastor Dan Love noted, “As much as we may love being together, and in our sanctuary, it is a reminder that God remains with us wherever we are.”
Listen to Rye Presbyterian’s sermons on ryepc.com with live-streamed sermons coming soon. Church of the Resurrection is offering live streamed masses. For a broadcast schedule, visit resrye.org. Christ’s Church is live streaming their 10 a.m. service on Sundays at ccrye.org. Community Synagogue of Rye is streaming for Shabbat and Life Cycle, as well as Torah studies at comsynrye.org. Keep in touch with United Methodist Church through Facebook while they work on a video worship service.
Wainwright House suggests “social distancing is the compassionate response to these challenging times, but physical isolation doesn’t have to mean disconnection.” If there ever was a time for staying calm and present in the face of adversity, it’s now, so Wainwright is offering online mindfulness meditation and yoga classes at wainwright.org. In addition, the holistic center is also compiling a variety of free cultural, educational, and spiritual programs for all to enjoy from the comfort of their own homes.
Speaking of homes, The Square House is closed, but one can visit the 1730 historically rich landmark on-line anyway. Until it reopens, take a virtual audio tour at ryehistory.oncell.com.
The Carver Market at Port Chester’s Carver Center continues to provide families with the food items they need Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 1-5 and Saturdays from 11-3.
“In times like these, we anticipate that food insecurity will be a top concern for families in our community,” said CEO Anne Bradner. “We have taken steps to ensure that we can continue to provide food assistance in a safe and healthy way, while also meeting the growing need.”
Visit the Rye Free Reading Room’s homepage for a myriad of virtual resources. As Emily Dickinson noted, “There is no frigate like a book to take us lands away.” E-books for adults and children are free and available around the clock through the “library without walls” initiative already in place. Discover new documentaries, foreign features, and kids’ movies through wls.kanopy.com.
Students can continue to take advantage of the library’s Homework Help by connecting with tutors Monday through Friday from 9-10. Visit www.tutor.com/westchester. In addition, staff members are available to help answer questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. Links for library cards are available, too.
Running out of things to do with the kids at home? The Rye Arts Center invites families to visit its new online resource web page for art, music, STEAM, coding, and performances. There are live drawing sessions and links to uplifting videos, such as “Create a Cubist Self Portrait”, “20 Stress Relieving Things to do at Home with Your Kids”, and “Find Your Groove Dancing”.
For their part, Rye Beach Pharmacy has implemented a seamless and safe way of conducting business. Customers never have to enter the store. Instead, friendly staff members with latex glove–clad hands take the orders, go inside, and bring the filled prescriptions or merchandise back to the customers in no time.
As far as retail, while some stores in town are closed, private appointments are available at some. Others have adjusted their hours and are operating under restricted conditions. For instance, Sammy & Nat is allowing only two shoppers in the store at a time and everyone must disinfect their hands with hand sanitizer available at the door. Pet stores have doubled up on their cleaning practices and are offering curbside pick-ups. Just give them a call and, by all means, support all local retail through their websites and Instagram accounts.
Need to satisfy a craving? Many restaurants and eateries are offering curbside pick-ups and/or delivery. Visit their websites for full menus. In addition, specialty shops are cooking up a storm and serving up prepared foods to take home.
Local neighborhood associations are also a vital part of Rye’s fabric. They send emails and update Facebook pages, so residents can share resources. Discover new ways of keeping kids from becoming stir-crazy and helping our elderly, immunocompromised neighbors fulfill their needs.
Finally, when we need a change in scenery or a breath of fresh air, let’s remember
our Sound Shore landscape is music to our ears. A stroll through our scenic parks and paths, beaches and boardwalks, harbors and marshes never fail to inspire.