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Safely Celebrating Thanksgiving 2020

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to warn the public of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. As positive case numbers surge across the country, the need to be mindful about how you are prioritizing virus safety is more important than ever, especially with Thanksgiving right around the corner.

At BD&J in Los Angeles, we want everyone in our communities to be happy and healthy. That is why we are sharing some insight from the CDC about how to keep Thanksgiving special in 2020 while still taking the right precautions to minimize the risk of encountering someone who is sick with COVID-19. Please give this list of tips a review if you are going to celebrate Thanksgiving this year with others.

Thanksgiving 2020 Safety Tips from the CDC

  • Plan for small, short gatherings: The risk of contracting the coronavirus increases with the number of people near you and how long you are near them. With this in mind, your Thanksgiving celebration should be intentionally brief this year and it should probably have fewer people than usual. Invitations should be for dinner only and, once the meal is over, people should say their goodbyes and head home. The number of attendees will vary depending on the size of your home, but 6 or 7 people is the safe maximum for most homes.
  • Avoid travel hubs: Thanksgiving and the days before and after it are always some of the busiest travel days of the year. Even in the pandemic, travel will increase predictably during this time. You and anyone attending your dinner should do their best to avoid travel hubs like airports and train stations. If possible, attendees should drive to your home, which allows them to stay completely away from strangers while traveling.
  • Stay outside if you can: Remaining outdoors and in an open-air environment is one of the more reliable ways to reduce coronavirus exposure risk. Here in Los Angeles, the weather should be somewhat mild on Thanksgiving, so planning for an outdoor dinner should be an option for many people. In other, colder parts of the country, though, an outdoor setting might be more difficult. Still, it will be worth checking your local weather forecast and seeing if you can create an outdoor eating area that keeps people comfortable and safe.
  • Wear masks, sanitize, and socially distance: You should always wear a protective facemask when near others, including friends and family members who are not in your isolation group. It might not be fun, but you should only remove your mask in between bites. Some families will even make a game out of taking turns eating at Thanksgiving! You need to also stay 6-feet apart from your guests, which is something to consider while setting up the eating area. Lastly, sanitize surfaces in common areas frequently – at least once an hour – during your Thanksgiving dinner. Because your event should not last more than a few hours, this means you should plan to clean once or twice as it is underway.
  • Control the kitchen: We all know family members who will chase anyone out of the kitchen during Thanksgiving because they want to create the perfect meal on their own. While this behavior is usually pretty funny, it is actually extremely helpful in 2020. One person should be in charge of the food preparation if possible, so there is a reduced chance of cross-contaminated food. The same person should also plate the food and serve it at the table before people are seated. Buffet-style Thanksgiving set-ups are not advised, as a buffet has a much higher chance of cross-contamination happening.

From all of us at BD&J, we wish you and your family a safe Thanksgiving full of food and fun!