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How To Host A Socially Distanced Thankgiving Your Friends And Family Will Enjoy

Thanksgiving is almost here, and many of you are asking how you can have a fun Thanksgiving while keeping your friends and family safe from Covid.  We are right there with you, collecting ideas and trying to make good decisions for the people we love as well. We share how you can host a social distanced Thanksgiving.

How To Host A Safe Socially Distant Thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving 2020 will definitely be one to be remembered.  Compared to previous years, this one has more restrictions and concerns to think about, besides what to make for dinner. If you are hosting friends and family this year, we know you have a lot to think about.

To help with your planning, we've pulled together some tips and tricks to make this Thanksgiving go smoothly and maybe even help you feel a little more at ease.

Related: 17 Beautiful Thanksgiving Tables

How To Host A Safe Socially Distant Thanksgiving

How To Plan Your Thanksgiving Guest List:

Besides Covid, it is also cold and flu season. With the hospitals filling up quickly, it is more important than ever to protect ourselves against viruses. That means we need to figure out how to reduce our risks for infection.

Be honest with your guests about your concerns and your house rules regarding social distancing and wearing masks while not eating. Be clear and don't feel bad about limiting the people you invite by those you know won't respect your house rules.

Ask your guests who have traveled more than 50 miles, ask them to make sure they haven't had any symptoms ( fever, cough, chills, etc.) and exposure to anyone with Covid or the flu. This isn't the time to be shy.  If you don't think you can ask, then perhaps this isn't the year to host.  And that's okay!

In our house, we don't have anyone inside the house.  All of our get-togethers are done outside to reduce the risks.  We also choose to wear masks, and our seats are spaced 6 ft apart.

Keep your guest list small, limited to under 15 people.

You can ask your guests to get a negative covid test before, but that's up to you. Many people are now living a Covid Safe lifestyle that doesn't interact with anyone outside of their house and have reduced their outside risks.

Related: How To Host The Best Thanksgiving

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Preparing For Thanksgiving During Covid:

Going shopping in crowded stores isn't a good idea. Plan to go early in the morning or late at night during the week to avoid the biggest crowds.

Keep the menu small.  Ask your guest to bring something prepackaged that doesn’t need to be reheated, like veggie trays, dips, side salads, and desserts.

Where should I have our Socially Distanced Thanksgiving?

We know that in many places, outdoor entertaining might be more difficult.  We plan on hosting our Thanksgiving dinner in our garage.  This does require a little bit of creativity, but it's worth it to be able to have our family together.

Consider cleaning out the garage and decorating with lights and tablecloths.  A screened-in porch, or gazebo is also a lovely place to celebrate your socially distanced Thanksgiving. 

You want to make sure there is good airflow and ventilation. 

Guests from different households can sit together and should be spaced 6 feet from other guests.  Make sure you have enough room for everyone to spread out. Set up your tables early, so you aren't rushed to make it work at the last minute.  

How to plan for keeping the food warm on Thanksgiving.

If you plan to host outdoors, it's a great reason to use your outdoor grill for cooking.  You can quickly cook several small dishes on the grill.  You can also bring small appliances like your Instant Pot and Crockpot outside to keep things warm. Simply run an extension cord and plug them in outdoors!  You can even wrap your dishes in tin foil and keep them warm for longer.

You can also opt for using a Sterno set that keeps the food warm from underneath.

Handwashing Stations:

Wherever you host your Thanksgiving, make sure your guests can easily find hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, or access to soap and water. It's also a nice thing to have extra face masks just in case!

Disposable Is Okay:

Yes, I know that many of us are worried about the environment, but if you are hosting a larger dinner, consider disposable dishware and utensils. This makes it easier to clean up, and you don't have to worry about accidentally coming in contact with germs or viruses.  Everything that can, we put in the dishwasher on “Sanitize” to make sure we aren't bringing germs into the house.

Don't forget to keep guests warm:

If you host your dinner early in the day, the cold might not be so bad. But we suggest having small lap blankets for your guests if they would like to have them placed on each chair.  We love these lap blankets that come in different patterns and colors.

We also love hand warmers like these to keep you warm while waiting for Dad to pass the masked potatoes.

We are bringing our Solo Stove to the driveway and lighting up our Infrared heaters in the garage to keep us warm.  This year, our Thanksgiving desserts will all be yummy campfire themed desserts that we can cook ourselves over the solo stove bonfire.

Make the best of it!

We know that this is a hard time for many people.  And sometimes new can feel uncomfortable. That doesn't mean you shouldn't embrace change or try to do your best.  It means that it's uncomfortable, but with people you like!

Talk to your guests and let them know that you appreciate that they are making an effort to celebrate with you and that it's hard for everyone. It's going to get better.  But for now, we all have to do our part to make sure we are helping to slow the spread of this virus to keep everyone safe.


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