How to Survive a Pandemic Thanksgiving


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The holiday season is upon us and we have essentially been on some sort of lock down since March. Although there is no perfectly safe way to gather, there are ways to reduce the risk to make the holiday a little less dangerous. The CDC has advised that Americans should not congregate on Thanksgiving with family members outside of their immediate households. Current recommendations state, “travel may increase your chance of getting and spreading COVID-19.” In actuality, travel in fact will increase the spread– a more accurate warning can be found floating on social media memes with the concise yet effective messaging: “Have a ZOOM Thanksgiving instead of an ICU Christmas”. Just think of the thousands of lives that could be saved if we did.

The number #1 trick  is to have a plan, write it down or type it up. Try to think ahead and plan in advance so that you can properly prepare. 

Social Distancing

If you do plan to travel to see family, The Atlantic shares these helpful tips on the best modes of transportation.  

How should you rank the modes of transportation?

Here’s a very rough hierarchy from safest to riskiest, based purely from the standpoint of coronavirus transmission (not carbon emissions, cost, time, or other safety concerns):

  1. Walking or biking

  2. Driving in a car with people inside your bubble

  3. Riding the subway

  4. Flying

  5. Driving in a car with people outside your bubble

  6. Taking a submarine


Let’s face it, Turkey Day is all about food and family. If you are looking for ways to feel connected, but still maintain your distance, we suggest organizing a Google Sheet to share recipes or  setting up a meal exchange among nearby friends and family. 

There’s no way around it. Zoom fatigue is real. But,  with all of the advances in technology schedule, a virtual celebration is still a valid way to stay connected. If you do plan to host family or friends, try scaling the guest lists and menu back. Cut yourself some slack this year and get some time back. Ordering from your favorite local restaurant not only can reduce the risk of spreading but also supports local businesses. 

Open Air dining is always an option for a gathering especially with outdoor heaters. Indoor gatherings are currently limited to 10 people in most states, so there’s nothing like enjoying a nice home-cooked meal under the stars. 


During this time of year, some may be alone or in need so remember to check in on friends and family. Offer support, refresh bonds and remind others that they are not alone. If you or someone you know is feeling suicidal or experiencing a psychiatric crisis, call 1-800-273-TALK, the national suicide prevention lifeline.

Remember if you’re feeling sick and even if you tested negative, don’t risk it and stay home, rest up so you can enjoy the rest of the holiday season. 

Yes, this has been a year full of ups and downs but that is even more of a reason to renew bonds and create a sense of community. We are all in this together! 

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