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The Daily Tar Heel

Editorial: 5 ways you can still have a happy birthday

DTH Photo Illustration. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, people have found creative ways to celebrate their birthdays from a distance.

Recently, we have reached an important milestone in regards to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic — its first birthday! (What a joyous occasion!)

While recognizing this (sad) fact, the anniversary of the pandemic has made many of us wonder about both our own past and upcoming birthdays. Times are tough, and unfortunately, it appears that COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines are here to stay. So, how can we continue to celebrate our own birthdays in a way that is both fun and safe? 

Thankfully, the world has had an entire year to come up with some coronavirus-friendly ways to celebrate birthdays. Here are just a few: 

1. Birthday cards

Although somewhat old-fashioned, sending and receiving birthday cards are a great way to celebrate someone's birthday. Although we can’t really see a lot of our friends or families right now, cards allow us to still engage socially with our loved ones. 

Not only do cards allow for a socially distanced celebration, but they can also be a great way to reminisce on old times in a truly personal way.

2. Zoom birthday calls 

Zoom birthday calls have been a trend since the very beginning of the pandemic, and, honestly, it's because they are a great way to mark a special occasion from a distance. Zoom calls allow us to reconnect with our friends in a way that is incredibly similar to having an actual in-person birthday party. 

From asking everyone to follow a theme to having everyone bring their favorite dinner, there are countless ways to make a Zoom call celebratory.  

3. Host a watch party 

One of the best things to come from the pandemic was the emergence of apps and extensions developed to let people virtually watch movies together. With apps like Teleparty, Hulu Watch Party and Amazon Watch Party, it is easier than ever to stream with friends and family. 

From watching your favorite movie to hosting a mock movie premiere, virtual watch parties are a fun way to add a little spice to a Zoom call. 

4. Scavenger hunts 

Another potential birthday party idea is to have a scavenger hunt! Whether you're planning one for yourself or have one planned for you, scavenger hunts are a great way to do something special on your birthday. 

There are many different ways to make a scavenger hunt and to personalize them to yourself, your friends or your family. For example, you could tell participants to take photos at all of your favorite places, or have them try and find items in their own homes that remind them of you!

5. Bucket list 

A bucket list for your birthday is a unique way to celebrate by doing things that you have never done before (but remember, keeping it coronavirus-safe is the most important). Maybe there's a restaurant you’ve always wanted to order take-out from or a waterfall you’ve always wanted to hike to. 

By making a bucket list, especially one focused on doing things within your local area, you are able to both celebrate your birthday while also doing something you’ve never done before.


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