Here's How to Safely Celebrate the Super Bowl, According to the CDC
Are you ready for some football? This Sunday, February 7, the Kansas City Chiefs will go head to head against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for Super Bowl LV. And whether your money is on the Chiefs' quarterback Patrick Mahomes or football legend Tom Brady, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is reminding everyone of how to stay safe while watching the Super Bowl this weekend.
Host a Virtual Party
Instead of hosting a large party with family, friends, and neighbors who you don't live with, health experts recommend hosting a virtual watch party. "Gathering virtually or with the people you live with is the safest way to celebrate the Super Bowl this year," experts at the CDC say. If you're missing out on one of your guests' famous Spinach-Artichoke Dip or football-inspired cupcakes, the CDC recommends sharing recipes in advance so everyone can snack on the same food, no matter where or who you're watching the game with.
"Enjoy the game, watch it on television, but do it with the immediate members of your family, the people in your household. As much fun as it is to get together in a big Super Bowl party, now is not the time to do that," Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said in an interview with NBC's TODAY.
Depending on how chilly it is outside, you may want to open windows to increase air circulation and prevent the spread of coronavirus if you're watching the Super Bowl indoors with people who you do not normally live with.
Watch the Game Outdoors
If you choose to entertain outdoors, attendees should still plan to maintain at least six feet of social distance, sanitize often, and wear face masks that completely cover their mouth and nose, particularly around any communal food or drinks. Experts say that washing your hands frequently with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds is important to stop the spread of COVID-19. If you don't have access to a sink for hand washing, use sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol.
CDC guidelines also recommend avoiding "chanting or cheering," which are activities that can cause droplets to spread farther than six feet. Instead, try stomping, clapping, or using hand-held noisemakers to support your favorite team.
Attending the Game
If you're attending the Super Bowl at the Raymond James Stadium, the CDC advises that everyone closely follows signs and markers that enforce social distancing. Think strategically about when to visit concessions stands or bathrooms—immediately before and after the game, as well as during the half-time show, will be the most crowded times, so consider going during the middle of a quarter instead. When ordering food and drinks, use touchless payment methods when available. You may want to bring your own food, drinks, plates, cups, utensils, and condiment packets, if possible. It's also smart to use single-use options, like salad dressing and condiment packets, and disposable items like food containers, plates, and utensils. You should also avoid self-serve and buffet-style food options, says the CDC.
Although it may be tempting to celebrate a field goal or touchdown from your favorite team with beer or a cocktail, the CDC recommends limiting alcohol consumption, as consuming alcohol may make you less likely to follow COVID-19 safety measures.
And as always, if you or someone you have been in close contact with has tested positive for coronavirus in the last 14 days, stay home.