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SUMMER RULES is a series where we ask people to share with us how they’re staying safe and sane during this very different summer season; from mask suggestions to soundtrack selections, we’ll take a peek into how others are making these challenging times work.

Today’s summertime check-in is with Amir Mostafavi, Founder and CEO of South Block; he recommends acai bowls, hiking, puppies and more to stay cool, calm and collected:

How do you usually feel about summer, as a season overall, and how do you feel about THIS summer, by comparison?

I love summertime! This summer is definitely different than usual…but I love being outdoors and there is still plenty of summer fun to be had!

What is your summer shaping up to look like?

We are busy at South Block! Just opened a new location in Vienna, VA… so been busy getting that store ready and now that we are opened it has been busy! People are staying home… so we hope South Block is a mini vacation for them! You can pretend you’re on a tropical beach with your Acai bowl!

Is there anything in particular you’re actually looking forward to this summer?

We just got a new puppy… so we look forward to officially welcoming this puppy to our family. We have a 6 year old cockapoo named Ginger, so we are hoping she will welcome her new brother!

What are some of your tips for staying safe and sane right now? 

Be outside as much as possible.  Take mini vacations and explore your surrounding area.  We just went hiking in Shenandoah National park… fresh air and mountain breeze… only 1.5 hour drive from DC!

Go-to summer wellness practice advice? Any spots in particular that have been helping you on that front?

Try to stay active…. even if just walking. It is so easy to be a couch potato right now.  Get outside, explore, and discover new things about your neighborhood and maybe even about yourself!

Where did you get your mask from? And what, aside from that, has been your more or less go-to summer uniform?

We made custom masks that say “YOU ROCK!” on them, and I wear it everywhere! I am also wearing shorts and a t-shirt in the summer.  Love flip flops too!

What (if anything) are you reading right now, and why do you recommend it? (Alternatively, just share a favorite book.)

I just finished Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, founder of Nike. I love books about how businesses were built!

Do you have a go-to summer hang-out recipe that still works for a socially distanced gathering? And/or just a favorite general summer recipe that’s still a go-to, even now?

Acai Bowls of course! We just started making Acai Bowl kits for home, so we always have those ready to go in our freezer at home!

What about a great summer cocktail or mocktail recipe?

I mix drinks with our cold pressed juices. My favorite is made using our glow juice mixed with  rum and garnished with mint leaves. I call it the “Glow-jito!

What’s on your summer playlist this year, or are there three songs that are permanent summer favorites for you?

Hmmm… I always love Sublime in the summertime…. been listening to that and Dirty Heads… “Vacation” is on repeat!

Where do you wish you COULD GO this summer, if there were no restrictions or safety risks?

Disney World! We were planning to go for my Daughters 10th Birthday in April, but had to cancel, so looking forward to going when it is safe!

And is there anywhere you’ve been safely going that you could recommend for people who live nearby? Any day trips or local spots worth mentioning, for example?

Shenandoah, Skyline drive. It is beautiful! Go hiking, see great views, and catch an amazing sunset.

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Check out menus, hours and ordering protocols for a South Block near you here.

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