Safer Holiday Celebrations during COVID-19
Holidays are one way Minnesotans celebrate the people, history, and events we care about. All of our celebrations, from major U.S. holidays to those of our diverse communities, are important expressions of culture, faith, and family connections. Each holiday is special in its own way.
Yet this fall and winter, each of our distinct holidays share something in common. Because of COVID-19, the safest way to celebrate is at home with only the people who live with you, and no one else.
Saturday, Nov. 21 through Friday, Dec. 18, Executive Order 20-99 requires all Minnesotans to:
- Limit social gatherings to one household.
- Not gather outside of your household.
- Postpone all celebrations, events, receptions, and parties, including any social gatherings for weddings and funerals.
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. Holiday gatherings may encourage older people and those with underlying health problems to attend rather than be left out, even though they are most likely to get very sick from COVID-19 and should stay safe at home.
If you must be around other people you do not live with, remember to:
- Stay at least 6 feet away from others.
- Wear a mask at all times when not eating or drinking.
- Cover coughs and sneezes, and wash or clean your hands often.
If you may have COVID-19 or if you may have been in contact with a person with COVID-19, stay home.
Choosing a safer holiday activity
It is especially important this year to find safer ways to celebrate the holidays and help stop the spread of COVID-19. While in-person celebrations are limited to one household, there are still ways to celebrate virtually with your loved ones. 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 virtually with people you do not live with.
- Dinner at home with the people who live with you.
- Going on a walk to see holiday decorations with the people who live with you.
- Shopping online rather than in person.
- Preparing traditional family recipes for family and neighbors, especially for those who are most likely to get very sick from COVID-19. Deliver without having contact with others.
- A virtual dinner night and sharing recipes with friends and family you do not live with.
- A virtual movie night with family and friends you do not live with.
- A virtual holiday craft night with family and friends you do not live with.
- Gathering Requirements for Celebrations and Significant Life Events (PDF)
- CDC: Holiday Celebrations
- CDC: People at Increased Risk
Traveling increases the chance of getting and spreading COVID-19. This holiday season, do not travel out of state or have family travel into Minnesota to join a holiday celebration. Incoming visitors and Minnesotans that travel out of state for non-work purposes are asked to quarantine for 14 days. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others.
Do not travel if you are sick or if you have been around someone with COVID-19 in the past 14 days. Do not travel with someone who is sick.
If you must travel:
- Lay low before you go. Plan to stay at home and to see only the people who live with you for at least 14 days. This is how long it can take to get sick after having COVID-19. Staying home keeps you from spreading the disease when you have it, but do not know it yet. Take into account how much COVID-19 is spreading where you are going and how much it is spreading where you live.
- Consider whether you, someone you are traveling with, or someone you are visiting are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.
- Consider how easy or hard it will be to keep 6 feet between people.
- Think about whether you would be able to miss work, school, or other activities if you get sick.
- Consider getting tested before you go and/or after you arrive. The test can tell you if you have COVID-19, even if you do not have symptoms. A negative test tells you only that you did not have COVID-19 at the time you were tested. You can still get COVID-19 anytime you are around people you do not live with, and you can get sick up to 14 days after you have contact with someone with COVID-19. Continue to wear a mask and stay 6 feet from others.