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Garland's Got Outdoors

By Kim Phillips
June 2020

“We have reached our cruising altitude. You are free to move about the cabin.”

A flight attendant’s next words would remind passengers to remain seated with their seatbelts fastened unless they really need to use the facilities. The crew knows their charges are safely buckled up; they also know that “when you’ve got to go, you’ve got to go.”

The world’s economies and people in general are about at the “gotta go” point. Like the flight captain, COVID-19 authorities think the pandemic has peaked enough to lighten quarantine restrictions with the caution to keep our seatbelts on because some turbulence is likely still ahead. People are beginning to emerge, but they are not going far. This summer, the vacation-planning buzzword is “staycation.” The 2020 cool thing to do is stay home and do your town like a tourist does.

Garlandites are especially lucky in the staycay department. Take a look at the May 20 article “The 100 Best and 10 Worst Cities for a Staycation this Summer,” in which Forbes Life contributing writer Gary Stoller reported on WalletHub’s recent comparison of 182 U.S. cities and how they rank in the realm of wallet-friendly fun. Garland scored well in the study at impressive number 19 among the top 100 staycay destinations. More remarkable yet, Garland’s fourth place among the 16 Texas cities on the list was above Texas tourism destination anchors like Austin, San Antonio and Houston.

WalletHub’s study is scientific with well-stated methodology that focused on 15 metrics between two primary categories: recreation, and rest and relaxation. The metrics included quality of life biggies like green space, outdoor entertainment options, affordability and weather, every one of which Garland’s got in abundance.

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