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Holiday Celebrations during COVID-19 Pandemic: Here's how to Stay Safe

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Coronavirus has hit the world hard and large gatherings are not recommended. Gathering during holidays can be an opportunity to reconnect with your friends and family, but at the same time, it could fuel the spread of coronavirus.Thus, it’s important to consider how the holiday plans can be modified to counter the spread of this pandemic and keep your family and friends healthy and safe.

Organizers and participants of significant events in Put-in-Bay and all other holiday destinations should consider the risk of contracting the disease. They should make the necessary adjustments in terms of the number of attendees and take precautions to minimize the possibility of spreading the disease.

Safety tips for the holiday event host and the attendees.

The hosts of the in-person holiday celebrations and the attendees should take several precautions to minimize the spread of coronavirus.

Before the celebration

The guests should bring along supplies to the events to enhance safety, such as hand sanitizes, face masks and hand tissues. It would be best if the event hosts place markers on the floor about 2 meters to encourage social distancing.

If the event involves people from various households, it's significant if the hosts and guests avoid coming in contact with people outside homes for 14 days before the event. The event hosts should also keep all the guests and their contact information for potential future tracing.

During the celebration

During the gathering, the guests and hosts must continue following the safety precautions to keep everyone safe and free from the COVID-19. Consider these tips.

Maintain social distance: At any gathering, be sure to avoid contact with outsiders. Ensure that you provide enough table and sitting areas so people could be at least 2 meters. Instead of hugging, verbally greet each other or wave hands. If you’re vacationing in Put-in-Bay, for instance, choose golf cart rentals instead of public buses.

Wear masks: Ensure that you wear a mask when around outsiders except when eating. Don't sing, shout, or chanting especially when not wearing your masks.

Encourage the utmost hygiene: Ensure that those preparing foods sanitize their hands before and after preparing the food. For those hosting the event, they should ensure that there is plenty of water, soap, and paper towels in kitchens and bathrooms.

Encourage safety around snacks and drinks: The event hosts should limit the number of individuals going in and out of the places where foods and beverages are prepared. They should consider having one person serving all the food and sharable items. Those who are preparing snacks and drinks should wear masks. They may consider having disposable utensils, plates, and cups. Ensure all the reusable items are washed and disinfected.

Limit contact with commonly touched surfaces: Make sure that you disinfect and clean the commonly touched surfaces and all the shared items. If you are the one hosting the event, ensure that you provide touchless garbage cans if available. Those who are disposing the trash should wear gloves and don’t allow the pets to interact with outsiders.

After the celebration

After the gathering, if you feel that you contacted the virus, ensure that you take extra precautions for at least two weeks. Stay at your household and avoid being around people who can infect you with COVID 19, and most significantly, get tested for the virus.

If you develop the signs and symptoms of the virus, immediately contact the event hosts and attendees. This will help prevent the spread of the disease by ensuring that other guests are tested or self-quarantined.

Holiday events will involve extra planning. But if you can take the safety measures, you can celebrate with your friends and families and reduce the chances of being infected or spreading the disease.

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