Going on a bear hunt: Upstate kids stay active amid COVID-19


BOILING SPRINGS, S.C. (WSPA) – Explaining the Coronavirus and social distancing to young children can be difficult; but some Upstate neighborhoods have come up with a fun way to bear with the changes.

“I saw big bears and small bears,” Lilly Kate Van Antwerp said.

Three-year-old Lilly Kate Van Antwerp is a pro when it comes to bear-hunting.

In fact, she and her family have bears living all around them, and they even have a safari vehicle designed specifically for hunting the furry creatures.

“Riding the beep-beep Jeep,” Lilly Kate said.

Lilly Kate’s mama bear, Katie Van Antwerp, told 7 News it has helped her little cub adjust to the weird times we’re living in.

“Lilly Kate doesn’t understand why we can’t stop and talk,” Katie Van Antwerp said. “It’s a way to interact with neighbors and friends without actually seeing one another.”

Katie Van Antwerp and other parents said explaining the Coronavirus and its effects to their little bears has been hard.

“People can get sick if we get too close,” Loranna Kitchen said. “Mostly, we’re just trying to keep our distance, but still be friendly and still have a good time as much as we can.”

And their kids’ isolation hasn’t exactly been a hibernation.

“Trying to get school done. Trying to keep kids happy instead of fighting all the time. So, something like this helps,” Kitchen said.

The hunting has definitely kept adventurous minds occupied.

“We’ve just been riding bikes around the neighborhood and we’ve been finding bears,” Mariam Kitchen said.

Parents told 7 News the fuzzy fun has been like honey–you guessed it–to a bear.

“There is love all around us. Even though, every day, it may seem dark, there is hope. And we just have faith that it’s going to be okay,” Katie Van Antwerp said.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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