From the Experts Public Health Restaurants Small Business

How to Enjoy this Holiday Season Safely

Happy Holidays!

The holiday season has fastly approached and many people are deciding how they are going to spend their holidays this year. As much as we all want to partake in many of our traditional holiday celebrations it is important that we all remain following the CDC guidelines regarding the coronavirus. We all want to spend time with our families and friends but we also need to limit the amount of contact with people to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. The recent trends in cases mean we need to make changes to our traditional holiday celebrations to keep everyone around us safe. This year instead of dining-in at a restaurant consider take-out to help reduce any possible transmissions of coronavirus or try to utilize virtual options of holiday activities instead of face-to-face holiday activities. We have compiled a few activities that are safe and fun for your whole family to enjoy. 

One fun option of holiday festivities you can do with the people you love while still staying safe is to grab some food and go to an activity nearby.

For a lot of people, going to look at Christmas lights is a must-do during the holidays. Viewing the decorations of the beautiful colors from bright lights during a starry brisk night always fills your heart with the meaning of Christmas. This activity could be a little difficult to attend, especially if you don’t want to be in a crowd of people. But don’t worry there are still drive-through light shows to attend, one in particular called Winter Lights Festival in Seneca Creek State Park in Gaithersburg, Maryland. This show is a completely socially distanced event where you will be in the comfort of your own vehicle! It consists of over 450 intricate light displays and enchanting lit trees that go on for 3.5 miles. It will last between November 27 to December 31 so go while you can!  All of the tickets are only available online at the moment so make sure you visit their website to purchase tickets and more information. Right before you go, you should pick up dinner from Peter Chang, the restaurant is 15 minutes away from the Winter Lights Festival and follows all of the CDC guidelines that keep you safe. They only do to-go orders, and make it easy for you to make online orders through their website and walk in to pick it up. Peter Chang is a Szechuan cuisine restaurant and some of their signature dishes include, soup steam pork buns, crispy pork belly, duck in a stone pot, beef in Sichuan chili, dry-fried eggplant, and chicken with onion & chili. Grab some food from Peter Chang and take the time to stop by and drive through the Winter Lights Festival while enjoying some authentic Szechuan cuisine with some family, friends, or on a nice date with your significant other. 

If you’re looking for a cozy night in, we have the perfect plan for you. If you and your friends enjoy binge watching shows and movies, but due to COVID are limited to social distancing, we recommend Netflix Party. This is a chrome extension that allows you to interact with your friends while using netflix to make it possible for you to connect from the comfort of your own home. You can interact by typing in the chat box as your show or movie is playing. It will broadcast the show or movies onto the screens of those who have decided to watch.To plan out your netflix party, we recommend getting together with some of your closest friends and creating a theme for the night. For the holidays coming up, we recommend the classics, like “How the Grinch stole Christmas,” or “Klaus” for a more family centered focus. To pair with your movie we recommend doing some research into the show to see the variety of foods they plan to eat. Now is a great time to order out and support your local business. Through apps like Doordash, Uber eats, and many more, you are able to support these businesses and drivers from your own bed. It is recommended that you maintain a six-feet distance from and when choosing to carry out or have contactless delivery, you are still able to enjoy the same meals now just in the comfort of your own home. 

Another fun activity to spend time with family and friends this holiday season to grab takeout food and eat together while staying socially distanced.

Great places to meet your friends and family include meeting at a family or friend’s home that allows for safe social distancing or an outdoor area such as a park. In order to keep this gathering and everyone safe, you should limit the number of people in attendance and wear a mask unless you are eating. The CDC recommends that people who decide to partake in this type of holiday gathering bring their own food, drinks, plates, cups, and utensils. Ruth Chris’s Steakhouse D.C. is a great option to pick up take out if you are interested in a safe restaurant that follows all COVID-19 safety measures. Ruth Chris’s Steakhouse offers menu items including steaks, seafood, chicken, and more while also keeping their customers and staff safe during this pandemic. Another great and safe option for takeout in the DC area is The Fancy Radish. The Fancy Radish is a vegetable-based restaurant. In addition to their wide variety of vegetarian-based food options, The Fancy Radish also offers wine and cocktails to go. Spending time with family and friends can still be an option this holiday season but it may seem a little bit different. The CDC also recommends having a conversation with guests before you have an event to set expectations for the holiday celebration.  

If looking to play the holiday extra safe – another wholesome feast option is meal kits. Meal kits are overall well-rounded to minimize virus exposure because they allow for purchasing the kits ahead of time, while calling for cooking and preparations at home. This is a perfect sister-activity to traditional takeout methods – where the family can spend some quality time together preparing a safe, personalized meal. Centrolina (D.C.) offers holiday packages that may be delivered straight to your door. The popular restaurant options include a Chef’s Market Basket, consisting of spaghetti, pizza dough, and sauce. Centrolina also offers a Holiday-Cookie Box extravaganza, perfect for the family member with a sweet tooth. On the flip side, the Centrolina restaurant website offers another great option for non-traditional takeout – recipes for popular dinner dishes with video-tutorials. 

This leads into a final option for non-traditional takeout, virtual D.C. based do-it-yourself tasting options. These options are perfect for those looking to tap into their taste-tester abilities. Holiday options are available for wine-drinking connoisseurs. D.C.’s own District Winery is offering a unique alternative to partying this year by promoting their wine through virtual taste testings, including blending classes as well. These virtual events bring out the inner-party planner, while adhering to safe practices and risk mitigation.


Winter Lights Festival:

Peter Chang:

Ruth Chris’s Steakhouse:

The Fancy Radish:

Centrolina & DC area Meal Kits: 


District Winery Wine Tasting: 

%d bloggers like this: