5 Ways to Have a Socially Distanced Thanksgiving Celebration

Eleanor King

With COVID-19 case numbers rising once again around the world and in the United States, Thanksgiving celebrations outside of immediate families are being heavily advised against by the CDC. Luckily, technology makes it easy to connect with family and friends near and far to celebrate the holiday through socially distanced means. 

Virtual Family Hour


Before or after your meal, mark out an hour of your day to chat with the family you might usually see during Thanksgiving. Set up a poll or calendar invite to make sure everyone has the time to get together and catch up. Seeing each other virtually is a great way to stay in touch with the whole family. This is a time to share stories from the past year, introduce any new family members, and remind those who have been impacted most by the virus that you are there to support them.

Virtual Turkey Trot


An annual tradition among many, a Turkey Trot is a fun way to get the day started. This year, opt for a virtual 5k among the friends and family who wish to participate. Each participant can select a five kilometer route for themselves, whether it be outdoors or on a treadmill, to run on Thanksgiving morning. Using a tracker app, record the run and send to the other members of your group to compare time, chat about the run, and more! To make it competitive, offer to donate a set amount to the fastest runner’s preferred charity.

Video Call Games


One of the great parts of technology is the plethora of free games easily available on app stores. Games such as virtual charades, Heads Up, and Psych! can get the whole family involved, all through the internet. Hop on a video call with the other players and log in to a whole new way to have a family game night.

Virtual Recipe Share


Craving your favorite stuffing recipe or green bean dish? Ask grandma to send you a copy! Swap recipes with your family so that everyone can eat their favorites on Thanksgiving, even if you aren’t all sitting around the same table. Take a photo of your dish and send it to the original recipe sharer for extra turkey points. 

Mom Pro-Tip: This year, reduce your carbon footprint from the holiday by offering a vegan-friendly set of Thanksgiving dishes

Dinner Dish Delivery 


If you live close enough to family members who do not live in your immediate household and who might not be able to easily cook for themselves, drop off their favorite dishes. Safely prepare dishes and deliver them in a way that does not involve contact, such as leaving them on the porch or dropping them right inside the door.

If you must meet in person, the CDC recommends keeping your gathering small and outdoors, with 6-foot social distancing measures in place and masks worn at all times. Frequently wash your hands and clean and disinfect all surfaces. Do not share food, drinks, or utensils.