This past Friday, March 27, 2020, our Villages Chapter of The Florida Native Plant Society held its first online event [The Villages Chapter-FNPS website]- Great Pollinators: Florida Native Bees and Honey Bees with Nini Connor and Jean the Beekeeper.
My neighborhood, my county, my state – we are all doing our best to “flatten the curve” and slow or halt the spread of the corona virus. The Villages, Florida is known for its active social life and abundance of activities from golf, pickle ball, swimming and over 3,000 clubs that cover crafts, physical and mental exercise and so on. Everything has been shut down.
I have a part-time job as an online classroom facilitator. If you’ve ever attended a webinar, maybe for work, then you may understand – I keep the online platform running smoothly, and help the attendees set up their audio, tell them how to ask questions or get the handouts. So the thought of having a group meet in a virtual classroom and hear a speaker by clicking a link on their individual computers is not new to me. I set out to see if I could help TV-FNPS keep in touch this way. Virtual platform software / subscriptions can be expensive, depending on how you want to use them though.
Another of my clubs – The Villages Genealogy – holds monthly webinars for members. So I got in touch with them to see if they could help us. They graciously stepped up in a big way to share their paid subscription and expertise! TV-FNPS had a wonderful attendance and participation. Even members who were not in Florida joined and let us know they were happy to do so. The presentation was recorded, and we hope to make the recording available on our website soon.
So if we are still in this “self-quarantine” situation on April 24, 2020, or something similar another time in the future, we have alternative – a way to create a “new normal” and come together while staying apart!