The COVID-19 pandemic made its impact throughout the summer with the cancellation of major public events such as festivals, concerts and other tourist attractions. While the current situation may have tampered with many people’s plans, here are some safe and fun alternative places to visit and things to do in Kent and the surrounding area.
Kent offers a number of public parks to visit and enjoy, including Fred Fuller Park and Franklin Mills Riveredge Park, located close to downtown. The Cuyahoga River runs through these public areas, offering a scenic view of the rushing water and people traveling in canoes or kayaks. The city of Kent mandates patrons wear face coverings in public places whenever social distancing is restricted to less than six feet. For a full list of parks in the Kent area, visit Kent’s Parks and Recreation website.
Golf courses & outdoor venues
Kent offers a number of golf courses, country clubs and outdoor entertainment in the local area. Here is a list of courses, times, social distancing guidelines and locations:
The Fairways at Twin Lakes: open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., offering a nine hole course. Masks are required inside the Lodge cabin and outside whenever social distancing is restricted to less than six feet. Rates and tee times can be found on their website.
Raccoon Hill Golf Club: open seven days a week from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m., offering an 18 hole course. Masks are required inside buildings. Rates and tee times can be found on their website
Sunny Hill Golf Course & Recreation: open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., offering a 27 hole course. Masks are recommended when approaching the clubhouse for outside services, as the clubhouse interior is closed. Indoor services at the clubhouse are not available to patrons at this time. Rates are available online. Call 330-673-1785 for tee times.
Birdie Shack Mini Golf: open seven days a week, Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. The Birdie Shack offers an 18 hole putt putt course, batting cages and a driving range. Masks are required when approaching the counter. More information here.
Kent also offers a number of indoor entertainment venues. Here is a list of their hours, social distancing guidelines and locations:
Moviescoops Kent: this is Kent’s local movie theatre venue. Masks are required inside. The theater is open Monday through Thursday 1 p.m. to 12 a.m., Friday 1 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., Saturday 12 p.m. to 12:30 a.m., Sunday 12 p.m. to 12 a.m.. Showings and more information here.
Sto-Kent Family entertainment: a bowling alley with bar and volleyball. Social distancing is encouraged while inside with distance markers and informative signs. Mini golf is closed indefinitely. They are open Monday through Wednesday 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., Thursday 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday through Saturday 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. More information here.
Kent Lanes: a bowling alley with volleyball courts and a bar. Masks are required inside and social distancing is encouraged. The bowling alley is open Monday through Thursday 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., Friday 4 p.m. to 12 a.m., Saturday 12 p.m. to 12 a.m., Sunday 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. More information here.
Spins Bowl Kent: bowling alley with arcade, kitchen and bar. Masks are required and social distancing is encouraged. Open Tuesday 12 p.m. to 10 p.m., Wednesday 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Thursday and Friday 12 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday 3 p.m. to 12 a.m., Sunday 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. and closed on Monday. More information here.
Kent Free Library: Masks are required and social distancing is encouraged with designated entry and exit locations. Special hours are offered Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. for senior citizens and high-risk visitors. Regular hours Monday through Thursday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and the library is closed on Sunday. More information here.
Local parks outside Kent
Only 25 minutes from Kent, the Cuyahoga Valley National Park [CVNP] offers over 125 miles of hiking trails and various sightseeing attractions such as Brandywine Falls and Blue Heron Falls. While the visitor center is closed and all summer programs have been canceled due to the pandemic, park rangers are encouraging the use of masks in areas with concentrated groups of people, and to practice social distancing. For a full list of attractions and activities at the CVNP, visit its website.