Will coronavirus pandemic put damper on Thanksgiving? CDC says changes to traditions may be needed

Virtual will probably be the way to go for this year’s big Thanksgiving get-together.

Thanksgiving is still weeks away, but the planning that goes into getting everyone around the dinner table would be starting soon — if it wasn’t 2020.

This year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that the best way of making sure coronavirus doesn’t spread through your extended family is to stay home. But if you have to travel, be aware of the risks.

There are three tiers of risk when it comes to celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday this year.

They are categorized as lower, moderate and higher risks.

Lower risk activities include:

  • Having a small dinner with people living in your home.
  • Preparing a meal for someone at risk of severe illness from COVID-19 and performing a no-contact delivery.
  • Having a virtual dinner with extended family and friends and sharing recipes.
  • Watching parades, sports and movies at home instead of with a crowd.

Moderate risk activities include:

  • Having a small outdoor dinner with family and friends in your community.
  • Visiting pumpkin patches or orchards but making sure all people use hand sanitizer, wear masks and practice social distancing.
  • Attending small outdoor sports events with safety rules in place.

Higher risk activities include:

  • Going shopping with crowds.
  • Participating, or watching a crowded sporting event.
  • Attending large parades.
  • Attending large indoor gatherings with people who don’t live with you.

The reconsidering of the traditional Thanksgiving holiday will also include after-dinner events like Black Friday. The CDC suggests instead of heading to the crowded mall, you should hit the computer and do your Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping online.

For more on the CDC’s recommendations for the upcoming holidays, click here.