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A Guide to Staying Safe During the Holiday Season

Last updated on February 12, 2021

Co-written by Zoë C.

Winter break is nearly upon us, and for most, this would usually be a time to visit with family and friends to reconnect over the holidays. However, it is critical to keep in mind that there are updated restrictions regarding Covid-19 for public safety reasons. Now is a good time to limit contact with people outside of your household as much as possible, unless this contact is essential. 

A quick reminder of CDC guidelines and restrictions:

  • Social indoor gatherings with people outside of your household are prohibited.
  • Outdoor gatherings are limited to 5 people, masks are required.
  • Most businesses are limited to outdoor service only.

King County has been averaging about 700 positive cases per day (see stats on the King County website below), which means that the best way to slow down the spread of the virus is to take extra safety measures in addition to the ones required. While it may be tempting to see friends during this time while the feeling of isolation is especially prevalent, the virus is spreading at an all-time high. There has been a general pattern of disregard for the virus even from people who followed all safety precautions months ago while we were just going into lockdown. This pattern is becoming increasingly harmful to those who are medically at-risk. It may seem daunting, but the only way we will be able to return to school this year is if we accept how serious the dangers of Covid are and follow through with social distancing and staying safe to the best of our ability. That being said, pay attention to your mental health and seek help if you need it. Many people are struggling right now to not let feelings of isolation overwhelm them, but it is our responsibility to support those in our lives so that we can successfully stop the spread of illness. 

If you’re looking to find a safe yet fun way to get into the holiday spirit, there are still holiday light displays being held safely this year, including the Woodland Park Zoo WildLanters, Seattle Center Winterfest campus lighting, and Starlight Lane drive-through at Lumen Field (previously Centurylink). Bellevue Square will also continue to light up Snowflake Lane but will not host a parade or any performances. There are many performances being done remotely this year such as the Seattle Pacific University sacred sounds of Christmas and the Seattle Girls’ Choir. Watching holiday movies is a safe way to go, but if you don’t want to watch on your couch, the Blue Fox drive-in theater is showing holiday movies until the end of December. The Ballard Holidayfest is a tradition still going strong this year, and it will be held socially distanced with masks required. 

Even while doing our best to stay safe during the holidays, and always, we can still find ways to have fun. Continuing to follow the guidelines set from the local government and health professionals will be so important in the coming months to make sure Covid-19 is under control. We all have a responsibility to our communities to keep each other safe, but we also have a responsibility to ourselves to make sure we’re having fun and finding moments of joy over the break.

Here is a link for further resources regarding the restrictions:

https://kingcounty.gov/elected/executive/constantine/covid-response/current-guidance.aspx

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