NEIGHBORS: Having to remain indoors during lockdown means getting creative when communicating with family and friends, such as via video calling apps. However, it is also the perfect opportunity to get to know the person or people who live in the home next to you, considering you are both likely to be there more often than usual. If your paths didn’t cross before due to the hustle and bustle of everyday life, they are bound to have done so during lockdown.

According to a survey of 4,000 Americans, conducted by BusinessElectric.com, an online electricity comparison and resource site, staying home has had a positive influence on neighborly relationships across the nation. The study showed that more than one in five (21%) Pennsylvanians met their neighbor for the first time during lockdown. This statistic was just above the national average of 20%.

A promising, heartwarming statistic to emerge from this study was that a majority of Americans are even generous enough to house a neighbor in need – 77% say they would volunteer to temporarily house their neighbor if they had nowhere else to stay.

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SUNDAY DRIVES: The Pennsylvania Great Outdoors Visitors Bureau has announced a Sunday Drives Photo Contest, which will run from June through August. The finalists’ photos will be posted online in September. Four entries will win cash prizes: First place will win $100, second place — $75, third place — $75 and fourth place — $25.

In order to enter a photo, visit the following website: visitPAGO.com/contest. The photo must meet the Sunday Drive contest theme and be taken in Jefferson, Elk, Clarion, Forest or Cameron counties.

According to the release on the contest, “One of the most popular ways to experience Pennsylvania’s Great Outdoors region is by taking a Sunday drive. There is something calming and relaxing driving down country roads and stopping to take a few photos along the way while enjoying scenic vistas, heavily forested mountains, quiet meadows and peaceful rivers.”

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