We know these are weird times. Here are some ways that you can support Baltimore Small Businesses AND keep busy during the next few weeks of quarantine and social distancing… We’ll keep updating this list, so check back!

How Families Can Support Baltimore Small Businesses AND Keep Busy During

WHEN YOU CAN, SKIP AMAZON

Local small businesses are being hit hard by everything that’s going on. We’re starting to see some close temporarily. But others are flexing and offering creative solutions.

aMuse Toys and Greedy Reads have partnered to offer same-day-delivery on books and toys (purchase must be $25 or greater) within a 10 mile radius of their Fells Point stores. Call in your order over the phone (they can help you find something if you need a new series to start or toy/science kit). MORE

Thinkery in Lauraville is creating Big Thinker Boxes packed full of opportunities for curiosity. There’ll also be a long list of possible combinations for activities and crafts in the box and your family will have a chance to come up with new ideas!! Boxes and playdough will be available for porch pick-up on Wednesday. Orders will open up on Monday morning for their newsletter subscribers. MORE

Wee Chic in Lutherville is offering curbside pick-up for customers. Just call ahead and they can help you find the perfect item in their newly expanded toy and craft section. MORE

Pic-n-Paint Pottery in Pasadena created take-home pottery kits and are offering curbside service. MORE⠀⠀

Amazing Glaze in Timonium is offering take-home pottery kits, too! MORE

The Charmery is working on packing pints and creating limited edition ice cream pies which will be available in-store or via Uber Eats and Grub Hub. MORE

TAKE YOUR WORKOUT VIRTUAL

Many area businesses are offering FREE online workouts while schools are closed. 

Love Evolution Studio has moved their entire yoga schedule to online Facebook Live classes  — for everyone! Evolution Kids Classes are Monday and Wednesday at 5 PM. Or, give the kids some on-their-own time and find a little zen for yourself with an adult class. MORE

Yoga and group fitness instructor (and Baltimore mom!) Sara Waire is offering yoga and family fitness videos on a new YouTube channel. MORE

Movement Lab in Hampden is starting to stream some of their Nia and Yoga Classes online. MORE

JOIN IN FOR LOCAL VIRTUAL FUN

Caprichos Books in BelAir is offering a daily “Crafting with Julie” Facebook Life series every day at 11 AM from March 17-20. Tune in and craft a long! Then pick out a new book from Caprichos online store. MORE

Danny Joe’s Tree House is offering Facebook Live streams for “Little Birds” every weekday at 1 PM. Danny LaBrecque is a local Baltimore Dad and his Mr. Rogers-style programming will definitely resonate with the littles in your life! They kicked off the new series yesterday with popular children’s book author/illustrator Todd Parr. MORE

Snapology of Towson-Perry Hall will be offering Lego Challenges with prizes on their Facebook page. Perfect time to get all of those Legos out! MORE

Local musician and Children’s entertainer Val Smalkin of Silly Goose and Val will be live streaming on Fridays at 9:30 AM. You can check out this schedule to see when different children’s musicians across the globe live streaming. MORE

Baltimore art teacher Camille Gammon-Hittelman has launched a new virtual Art Breaks with Mrs. G-H on Facebook Live. Art breaks are fifteen minute creativity breaks for kids. MORE

(cool) progeny will host a daily creativity challenge every day the kids are off. Challenges start on Monday, March 16th!

BE A HELPER

One of our favorite pieces of advice from Mr. Rogers — “look for the helpers.” Here are some ways that you and your children can be helpers…

Baltimore Hunger Project is asking kids to make notes of encouragement hat they can include in food packs going to food insecure children. Families can message them directly to arrange drop-off and they’ve provided examples on their Facebook page. MORE

Maryland Food Bank is hosting a virtual canned food drive so that they can pack Back Up Boxes with 30lbs of shelf-stable foods to help seniors and other affected Marylanders get through this difficult time. Their wholesale purchasing power will maximize the impact of your gift. MORE

BUY A GIFT CARD

Have a favorite restaurant? Now is an excellent time to buy a gift card. Save it to treat the fam to a dinner out after we get through this…

DON’T ASK FOR A MEMBERSHIP REFUND (IF YOU CAN)

Your child’s music school or dance class or even My Gym may be closed. The initial reaction is to ask for a refund or to pause your membership. These local small businesses (and yes, My Gym and franchises like it are owned by local families) depend on that tuition or membership dollars to operate. They still have to pay their rent and mortgages, their employees, their electricity, and all of their other bills while they are closed. If you want them to be able to operate when life gets back to normal — and your child to have those services —  they need your tuition dollars.