• Harrison Freuck

How to Celebrate the Holidays Safely During COVID-19

While everyone is exhausted with the countless impacts of COVID-19 on the lives on our friends, family, and ourselves, the pandemic won't stop just because we want it to. With holiday season right around the corner, here's some advice for how to celebrate safely.

While there are infinite options for celebrating, the most common way to do it is to make a homemade meal-for-one (or for you and your roommates) and simply call your family to celebrate together virtually.

For Thanksgiving this year, my roommates and I decided to make a sort of potluck with our friends around Madison. Instead of meeting up and cooking together, each of our households made one or two items (turkey, stuffing, green beans, gravy, biscuits, etc.) in a quantity large enough for everyone. We're then going to meet up at a neutral location to exchange portions and return home to eat separately.

While this Thanksgiving celebration certainly isn't conventional or nearly as fun as eating together, you can still enjoy some quality time with your roommates (hopefully you get along) and cook together. You can also hop on a Zoom call with everyone once you return home, maintaining some semblance to normalcy.

If you are visiting with family or friends, get tested before visiting, and be sure to wear a mask and stay socially distant during your stay. When you're eating or drinking, maintain at least six feet of distance (preferably more). Also, avoid alcohol and/or drugs, as these will impede on your judgment capabilities. After your visit, you need to quarantine for 14 days, even if you think you're 100% sure nobody has COVID-19. Again, it is preferable to stay safer at home, both for you and the ones you love, as this is the only foolproof way to avoid spreading the virus.

When it comes to the end-of-year holidays (Christmas, New Year's, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, etc.), you should follow similar guidelines. Do a remote Zoom call and enjoy food at your own home. In 2020, we're lucky enough to have the capability to send gifts and letters to friends and family from the comfort of our home.

No matter how you celebrate the holidays this year, be sure that whatever you decide is right for you and others around you. Don't be selfish, stay safe, and make smart decisions. Happy Holidays!