Safer Celebrations during COVID-19: Holidays and Other Gatherings
Holidays, festivals, and get-togethers are how Minnesotans celebrate the people, history, and events we care about. All of our celebrations, from holidays to sharing a meal with friends, are important expressions of culture, faith, and connection.
Because of COVID-19, this winter, holidays, celebrations and social gatherings will need to look different.
Starting Jan. 11, 2021, Executive Order 21-01 requires all Minnesotans to:
- Limit indoor social gatherings to two households with no more than 10 people total, and stay 6 feet apart from anyone you don’t live with.
- Limit outdoor social gatherings to three households with no more than 15 people total, and stay 6 feet apart from anyone you don’t live with.
- Consider postponing large celebrations and events until there is less community spread of COVID-19.
- Social gatherings where food and beverages are served, including receptions related to weddings and funerals, must be limited to two households with no more than 10 people where everyone can stay 6 feet apart; up to three households with no more than 15 people where everyone can stay 6 feet apart.
Because of COVID-19, the safest way to celebrate is at home with only the people who live with you. Anytime you get together with people who do not live with you, even in someone's home, the risk of getting COVID-19 goes up for everyone.
Social gatherings may encourage older people and those with underlying health problems to attend, even though they are most likely to get very sick from COVID-19 and should stay safe at home.
- Wear a mask, whether at indoor or outdoor gatherings.
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others.
- Gather in an area with good ventilation. If indoors, bring in fresh air by opening windows and doors, if possible.
- Cover coughs and sneezes, and wash or sanitize your hands often.
- Write down the guest list in case someone tests positive for COVID-19 afterward and others at the gathering need to know.
If you plan to gather with one other household indoors, or up to two other households outdoors, lay low before you go. Help keep loved ones safe by staying at home and only seeing people who live with you for at least 14 days before you gather. That is how long it can take to get sick after being close to someone with COVID-19. Staying home keeps you from spreading the disease when you have it, but do not know it yet. Getting tested for COVID-19 is recommended for anyone at any time. However, even if you get tested, you should still stay home and only see people who live with you for at least 14 days before gathering with people from other households.
Choosing safer activities
It is especially important this year to find safer ways to connect with others and help stop the spread of COVID-19. Help keep friends and family safe by choosing lower-risk activities.
Here are some ideas of activities that you can do individually, with the people you live with, or with one or two other households.
- Meals at home with the people who live with you.
- Getting outside with the people who live with you.
- Shopping online or doing curbside pickup rather than going inside a store.
- Preparing food for family and neighbors and deliverying without contact, especially for those who are most likely to get very sick with COVID-19.
- A virtual dinner and sharing recipes with friends and family who do not live with you.
- A virtual movie night with family and friends who do not live with you.
- A virtual craft night with family and friends who do not live with you.
More risk: Seeing others
- A small outdoor gathering with no more than 15 people from two other households.
- A small indoor gathering with nore more than 10 people from one other household.
High risk: Going to crowded places
Avoid these activities to help stop the spread of COVID-19:
- Shopping in crowded stores.
- Going to indoor gatherings with people from many different households.
- Going to a crowded bar, restaurant, party, or concert either indoors or outdoors, where you cannot keep at least 6 feet from others.
- Traveling between states. For more information on traveling, see Protect Yourself & Others: Traveling.
Flyer with tips on how to celebrate safely. Customize the title for any holiday or gathering.
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Amharic (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Arabic (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Chinese (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Hindi (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Hmong (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Karen (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Lao (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Nepali (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Oromo (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Russian (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Somali (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Spanish (PDF)
- Celebrate a Safer Holiday in Swahili (PDF)
- Gathering Requirements for Celebrations and Significant Life Events (PDF)
- Indoor Air Considerations: COVID-19
- CDC: Holiday Celebrations
- CDC: People at Increased Risk
Traveling increases the chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. If you are considering travel, include a plan to stay away from others (quarantine) when you get back to Minnesota. Learn more at Protect Yourself & Others: Traveling.