Are You Looking Forward to a Virtual Thanksgiving Celebration?


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggested this week that a virtual Thanksgiving should replace large gatherings this year.

Going “over the river and through the woods” might give way to signing in on Zoom this year. The CDC recommended a virtual Thanksgiving for families who normally travel to meet up in person.

Can you imagine enjoying the turkey feast over a teleconference? Can you imagine watching members of your family argue over Zoom whether it’s dressing or stuffing?

At least when the tryptophan kicks in, you can turn off your camera so no one sees you napping.

CBS News reported the agency recommends families skip traveling altogether. Instead, they should have smaller Thanksgiving dinners with people only living in the same household.

In my case, that’d be me and the dog. He’d be happy to share a Thanksgiving dinner with me, I have no doubt. But comparing my cooking to Mom’s, he’d surely be disappointed.

CDC guidelines will surely sound familiar.

You’ve heard the basics that the CDC is recommending for months now. So you shouldn’t be surprised by what they hope you’ll do this Thanksgiving. But I’ll give you a few highlights:

  • Host outdoor activities rather than indoor activities as much as possible. If hosting an outdoor event is not possible, and you choose to host an indoor event, avoid crowded, poorly ventilated, or fully enclosed indoor spaces. Increase ventilation by opening windows and doors to the extent that is safe and feasible based on the weather.
  • Host activities with only people from your local area as much as possible.
  • Limit how many people attend as much as possible.
  • Provide updated information to your guests about any COVID-19 safety guidelines and steps in place to prevent the spread of the virus.
  • Provide or encourage attendees to bring supplies to help you and others stay healthy. For example, extra masks (do not share or swap with others), hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, and tissues.
  • If you are planning in-person holiday gatherings with people outside of your household, consider asking all guests to strictly avoid contact with people outside of their households for 14 days before the gathering.
  • Check with the event host, organizer, or event venue for updated information about any COVID-19 safety guidelines and if they have steps in place to prevent the spread of the virus.
  • Bring supplies like masks and hand sanitizer to help you and others stay healthy.

It sounds depressing, but no more depressing than this entire pandemic has been.

No matter what you plan for your Thanksgiving holiday, I hope you have a safe one. And I’m hoping Christmas will look better.

Patrick is a Christian with more than 30 years experience in professional writing, producing and marketing. His professional background also includes social media, reporting for broadcast television and the web, directing, videography and photography. He enjoys getting to know people over coffee and spending time with his dog.