Gathering in groups—even with people we know—may spread COVID-19. The more people we interact with at a gathering and the longer that interaction lasts, the higher the risk of becoming infected.
Celebrating Holidays Safely
Indoor social gatherings are restricted from November 17 to December 14.
- All participants quarantine for fourteen (14) days prior to the social gathering.
All participants quarantine for seven (7) days prior to the gathering, and receive a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 48-hours prior to the gathering.Outdoor social gatherings are limited to:
- Five or fewer people from outside your household (people you don't live with).
- Outdoor spaces where everyone can stay six feet (2m) apart.
Here’s what we know: Gathering with people we don't live with—even close friends and family—may spread COVID-19. The more people we interact with at a gathering and the longer that interaction lasts, the higher the risk of becoming infected.
The safest action for everyone is to avoid gatherings, even outdoors, and find different ways to celebrate this season.
This site includes ideas for how to gather virtually. If that’s not an option, below is a checklist to help plan a safer outdoor gathering. Indoor social gatherings with people from outside your household are restricted until December 14.
After the Celebration
If you participated in higher risk activities or think that you may have been exposed during your celebration, take extra precautions (in addition the ones listed above) for 14 days after the event to protect others:
If you develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19, such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath, or if you test positive for COVID-19, immediately contact the host and others that attended the event or celebration that you attended. They may need to inform other attendees about their possible exposure to the virus. Contact your health care provider and follow the CDC-recommended steps for what to do if you become sick, and follow the public health recommendations for community-related exposure.
Fall holiday celebrations
Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Halloween, Día de Los Muertos, Navratri, Diwali, and Thanksgiving will likely need to be different this fall to prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19. Avoid activities that are higher risk for spread. Consider fun alternatives that pose lower risk of spreading the virus that causes COVID-19.
- Thanksgiving is a time when many families travel long distances to celebrate together. Travel increases the chance of getting and spreading the virus that causes COVID-19. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. If you must travel, be informed of the risks involved.
- Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet or more from people you don’t live with. Be particularly mindful in areas where it may harder to keep this distance, such as restrooms and eating areas.
- Avoid using restroom facilities at high traffic times, such as at the end of a public event.
- Avoid busy eating areas, such as restaurants during high volume mealtimes, if you plan to eat out at a restaurant.
- Minimize gestures that promote close contact. For example, do not shake hands, bump elbows, or give hugs. Instead wave and verbally greet others.
Activity Sheets (printable PDFs)
Jefferson County Halloween Tips (PDF)
Jefferson County Halloween Tips - Spanish (PDF)
- WA State Department of Health: Tips for a Safer Halloween (PDF)
- Many of the traditional ways in which we celebrate Halloween involve contact with non-household members in large group settings. This year, it is important to plan early and identify safer alternatives to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19.
- CDC: Halloween
- Many traditional Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading viruses. There are several safer, alternative ways to participate in Halloween.