Tips on local activities for young adults in a summer canceled by COVID-19

Many summer events have canceled because of the pandemic; here is a list of activities that are still available locally for young people to enjoy.

Jason Wog, left, and Abby Valladarez play pickleball as a team at Sperry Park Courts in Willmar. Lydia Morrell / West Central Tribune

Outside of work, lake days and hanging out with friends, boredom is often inevitable over the long summer months for young adults. In times of COVID-19, where most events are canceled, boredom is even more persistent. Here is a list of some events and activities young adults can look forward to this summer to fight the nothing-to-do blues.


Willmar Movies in the Park: Catch a drive-in movie at the Civic Center on July 17, or actually in the park at Rice Park near downtown Willmar on Aug. 22. Another opportunity will be Sept. 18 at the Bill Taunton Stadium on the west edge of town.

The Barn Theatre: Check out the virtual variety show on YouTube of submissions from community members. Links are posted on the website and Facebook. Submissions can be emailed to

Willmar Golden Ticket Kandi 6: The theater reopened June 19 at 25 percent seating capacity, with social distancing practices in place. Tickets must be purchased on the website. Through the end of June, all movies will be $5.

Litchfield Starlite Drive-In Theatre: Open Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights in the summer. Box office opens at 8 and the first show starts at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 for adults 13 and older, $4 for kids ages 5-12, and free for kids under 5. Parking is limited to 50 percent capacity, and social distancing is encouraged at the box office and concession stand.



Depot Museum park gazebo: An outdoor concert in Danube is set for Aug. 4 with the Kingery Family at 7 p.m.

Glacial Ridge Winery: The Thursday concerts are scheduled 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. through September. Music on July 2 will be by Jeff James. More information is available on the website.



Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center runs group paddling programs on the PWELC slough, but does off-site programs on request. If interested, call ahead to determine a date, time and price for this group activity.


PWELC also offers mountain bike rentals for $20 for two hours/$10 for members. There are four miles of biking trails, and 4.5 miles of hiking trails open free to the public.

BikeWillmar is a bike sharing program that runs throughout the summer in Willmar with 10 docking stations where users can enter a small fee and sanitize their bike.

Glacial Lakes Recreation Trail offers biking, rollerblading, longboarding or walking, paved on the 22-mile stretch between Willmar, Spicer, New London, Hawick and the Kandiyohi/Stearns County line, and a five-mile stretch between Richmond and Roscoe. Parking lots are at Willmar Civic Center, in Spicer at the junction of state highway 23 and County Road 10, and in New London off state Highway 9 by public water access.

Sibley State Park has plenty of trails for hiking or biking, including Parker-Fremberg trails for casual hiking, and Mount Tom trail for a hiking workout.

Racquet sports

Tennis courts are located at Willmar Senior High School, Willmar Middle School, Rice Park and Miller Park in Willmar, New London-Spicer High School and the Spicer Beach Street Park.


Pickleball can be played on any of these locations, or at Sperry Park along North Business 71 in Willmar.

Racquetball is available indoors at the Kandiyohi YMCA. Call ahead to reserve your time.

Frisbee golf

Robbin’s Island Disc Golf Course is a scenic 18-hole course in Willmar on a land bridge between Willmar and Foot Lakes. Play is free around the park, featuring a challenging course with long and short holes, wide and narrow fairways and hilly terrain filled with scenic trails through forested oak hills and grassy knolls.

Mini golf

Big Kahuna Fun Park in Spicer is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day through Labor Day. All of their features are open, including a mini-golf course, bumper boats and go-karts.


Alley on Ash in New London is open 9 a.m. to midnight Wednesdays, 3 p.m. to midnight Thursdays to Sundays, bowling is open to 25 percent and dining is open to 50 percent; reservations must be made beforehand either in person or by calling 320-354-2112.

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