Social distance the #SimplyGrand way

Searching for SimplyGrand ideas on how to have social distancing fun and support our local businesses all in one? Here are five ways to buy, try and give a sigh of relief when you and your loved ones enjoy some quality time together, even as the outside world seems rather scary right now.


The Greenway Trail System offers several ways (yes, even in winter months) to get great exercise in the great outdoors such as bird watching, jogging or just taking a casual stroll by the river. Before heading out to stretch your legs, get your feet fitted with some superior sneaks from See Dick Run. Go to, peruse through all their cool shoes and place an order for pick-up or delivery.


Now is the time to reconnect with family and friends who haven’t heard from you in a while. CURIOUS Gift sells numerous nifty notecards (lots of other cute items, too) just perfect for mailing out to Uncle Al, Grandma Milly or that whacky, wonderful roommate who was a partner in crime for many of your college antics. To check out CURIOUS’ awesome offerings, click on


Who doesn’t enjoy a little quiet time, on the couch, enjoying great literary works? With everything from Shakespeare and Dr. Seuss to classic novels and coloring books, Ferguson Books & Media is your one-stop shop. In addition to reasonably priced new and used books, they also offer media and toys. Check ‘em out for yourself at, then place your order for pick-up or delivery.


Nobody really enjoys decluttering their closet but there is a tremendous benefit…you get to add some brand-new clothing items to your collection! One of my top online spots to shop is at Located in our up and coming Downtown District, Kittsona features both exclusive and name brand apparel, accessories and shoes for women that will suit you to a T. It’s also the place to go for uniquely ND/MN clothing, gifts and home décor.


They say the family that cooks together stays together. Ok, maybe nobody said that BC (Before COVID-19) but I bet they will now! If you don’t wanna battle crowds at the grocery store, go to The Olive Barrel website ( and order some of their quality balsamic vinegars, olive oils, pastas and more for curbside pick-up or shipment. Need a recipe idea that incorporates your new purchases? Here’s a quick and easy favorite – 10 Minute Balsamic Tuscan Pasta:


  • 1 package Pasta Mama’s Penne
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (divided)
  • ¼ red onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • ½ tomato (chopped)
  • ½ cup firmly packed spinach
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp shredded parmesan cheese


  • Add 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil to a skillet on medium heat and add sliced onions.
  • Let cook 2 minutes, then add cooked pasta, garlic, tomato and spinach.
  • Cook 4 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure even cooking.
  • Add remaining tbsp of olive oil along with balsamic vinegar.
  • Stir to incorporate and serve.
  • Sprinkle each plate lightly with shredded Parmesan cheese.

For more information on these and all our SimplyGrand to-dos, stores, attractions and more, go to We also invite you to follow @VisitGrandForks on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.