The best ways to safely celebrate Labor Day in 2020

The best ways to safely celebrate Labor Day in 2020

You can safely celebrate Labor Day 2020

Looking to safely celebrate Labor Day this year?  You can safely get together with others by following safety guidelines.

Below are tips for staying safe while still enjoying the holiday during COVID.

Barbecues, family picnics and pool parties are typically ways to celebrate Labor Day weekend.  However, things are going to be different in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Luckily, you can still host a small outdoor gathering with a little planning.  Follow safety guidelines to keep you and your loved ones safe and healthy.

Safely Celebrate while Social Distancing

Throw a small outdoor picnic or barbecue to celebrate.  You can either host or plan to meet in a park or other outdoor area. 

Ask guests before they arrive to maintain six feet or more apart from each other. Distance is especially critical when eating because you cannot wear a mask and eat. 

You can either put chairs or blankets out for guests or mark spots that are 6 feet apart to make it easier to socially distance. 

stay safe by making sure guest keep 6 feet for social distance
Ask guests before they arrive to maintain six feet or more apart from each other, especially when eating

Make sure to ask your guests bring masks to wear just in case they need to go to the bathroom or inside.   

Along with this, wear a mask when you are preparing food.  Let them know you are following recommended steps to help them stay safe and healthy.

Have the food prepared before guests arrive.  Package the food individually if possible.  Your guests can take turns getting food and spreading back out.  

Virtually Get Together

If you do not want to or cannot meet people in person, plan a virtual Labor Day get together.

Start by setting a menu or single recipe that each individual household can easily prepare.  Everyone can make the dish before and enjoy it together during the virtual party.

Labor Day typically involves grilling, barbequing, eat fresh fruits and vegetables and drinking refreshing drinks such as lemonade. You can find quick and easy recipes with pantry ingredients for your cook together recipe.

safely grill eggplant zucchini peppers for labor day celebrate safely
Many Labor Day celebrations include grilling or barbecuing.

Precautions for Small Celebrations

How can you host a small outdoor gathering and stay safe? To start, there are actions you can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

Follow these guidelines for your Labor Day soiree and daily to keep you and your loved ones safe and healthy.

Smiling Flask with Orange Liquid

To start, there are actions you can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

  • Wear a mask when you are in public.  Make sure you cover both your mouth and nose.
  • Continue following standard Food Safety steps.  
  • Social distance from others at a minimum of 6 feet.
  • Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds.  Sing Happy Birthday in your head twice to make sure you are washing long enough.
  • Stay healthy by continuing to eat nutritious foods (like produce) to take care of your physical and mental health.

Safe Food Handling during COVID

The CDC considers the likelihood that you will get COVID-19 from eating or handling either foods or food packages is very low.  Although this is great news, the risk is not zero. 

Follow standard food safety guidelines to minimize your risk.  Remember, it is always important to use good food safety practices to reduce the risk of illness from common foodborne pathogens.

4 steps to Food Safety
Follow general Food Safety guidelines handling food and before, during and after preparing and eating food.

Use proper food safety practices when handling food and before, during and after preparing and eating food.

Clean surfaces

Regularly clean and disinfect your kitchen counters using disinfectant.  You can buy these commercially or make your own. 

To make your own disinfectant solution, add 5 tablespoons of unscented liquid chlorine bleach to 1 gallon of water.  Do not use this to wash food. 

When disinfecting your kitchen leave the disinfectant product on the surface for at least 1 minute

Before preparing food on the kitchen counter, rinse disinfected surface with water.

Wash your hands

Again, there is no evidence to suggest that handling food or consuming food is associated with COVID-19. 

Poster__Stop_microbes_wash_your_hands_ (1)
Stay healthy and safe from microbes by washing your hands often and through the cooking process.

Coronaviruses, like the one that causes COVID-19, most likely spread person-to-person through respiratory droplets

Always wash your hands after shopping, handling food and food packages, and before preparing or eating food.

Wash with Soap

Wash with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Honestly, the 20 second rule is new for me. As I said earlier, I sing Happy Birthday twice in my head.

Or Use Hand Sanitizer

If you do not have soap and water available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.  

When you use hand sanitizer, make sure you cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.  The rubbing and drying is how the sanitizer works.

In addition, please note the FDA is warning consumers about alcohol-based hand sanitizers that are being packaged in food containers or packaging.  Many food and beverage companies are packaging sanitizer in their standard bottles, so it could appear as food or drink.  

Do not eat or drink any sanitizer products as they cause serious internal injury and death!

Final Thoughts, you can Safely celebrate Labor Day in 2020

You can safely celebrate Labor Day this year. 

Host a small outdoor celebration with those you love. If you are not up for in-person gatherings, try a virtual party.

You can still have a wonderful holiday weekend with a little planning.  Follow safety guidelines to keep you and your loved ones safe and healthy.

References

Food and Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).  https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/food-and-COVID-19.html.  Retrieved 30 August 2020.

Keep Food Safe.  https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/keep-food-safe.html. Retrieved 31 August 2020.

Q&A: Food Safety and Nutrition related to COVID-19. https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/question-and-answers-hub/q-a-detail/food-safety-and-nutrition#:~:text=can.  Retrieved 31 August 2020.

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