This Sunday, the Kansas City Chiefs will face off against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV. Families across the country are excited to uphold the tradition of making some great food and gathering with friends and family to watch the big game. But even as the vaccine is rolling out, is it safe to have a Super Bowl party? In a word, no.

Last week, the CDC updated its recommendations to include advice about attending and watching the Super Bowl and in short, they say attending a large event, whether it’s the big game or a watch party, increases your chance of contracting and spreading COVID-19.

“The safest way to celebrate events is at home with the people who live with you,” says the CDC.

Cases of COVID-19 have increased after all major holidays since people have chosen to gather together which makes it easier for the virus to spread. The Super Bowl is particularly risky since celebrations tend to be held exclusively indoors, with lots of loud chanting and yelling. The consumption of alcohol can also make partygoers loosen up on the rules and restrictions.

“Attending large gatherings like the Super Bowl increases your risk of getting and spreading COVID-19,” says the CDC. “The safest way to watch the Super Bowl this year is at home with people you live with. If you choose to attend the Super Bowl or a large Super Bowl event, like a watch party this year, follow these steps to make yourself safer:

  • Call the venue to ensure that they have steps in place to prevent the spread of the virus.
  • Follow signage at the venue to allow for social distancing.
  • Arrive to the venue early to avoid crowding and congested areas.
  • Avoid using restroom facilities or concession areas at high traffic times, such as half-time or immediately at the end of the event.
  • Avoid chanting or cheering. Stomp, clap, or bring hand-held noisemakers instead.
  • Wear masks at all times.
  • Use touchless payment methods at the venue when available.
  • Limit alcohol consumption. Consuming alcohol may make you less likely to follow COVID-19 safety measures.
  • Minimize the time you spend in the restaurant, bar or concession area. The longer you stay, the more you increase your risk.

While we need to stay vigilant, especially as variants of COVID-19 present a greater risk, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a great Super Bowl Sunday. Throw your own party at home with the people you live with and have other friends and family join in the festivities via video chat. Make fun recipes like chili or nachos and a signature cocktail to celebrate. Get the kids involved by making signs and banners to set the mood.

And don’t forget to get outside for your own game of touch football before the big game, weather permitting

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