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January 17, 2021

County releases Thanksgiving Covid guidelines

SANTA CRUZ COUNTY—Health officials from eight Bay Area counties on Monday issued a set of guidelines created to keep families safe from Covid-19 during the holidays. The recommendations cover travel and gatherings.

The health officers from the counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz and Solano and the city of Berkeley said that gatherings should be limited to single households.

“While we have made progress in reducing disease transmission and reopening our economy, many activities remain risky and we all must work together and make sure vulnerable members of our community are protected,” said County of Santa Cruz Health Officer Dr. Gail Newel.

In addition, long-distance travel should be avoided, the guidelines state.

Some national and state governments have requirements and restrictions for visitors from California, including mandatory quarantine and testing. Anyone considering travel should check what the rules and requirements are beforehand. 

In addition, those traveling should check the rate of Covid-19 transmission before leaving at

For those who plan to hold a gathering

• Host outdoor gatherings. Outdoor spaces that are covered are OK, as long as 75% of the space is open to the outdoors. 

• Keep it small—no more than three families

• Keep it short—no more than two hours

• Avoid singing, chanting and shouting, whenever possible

Additional suggestions from the County of Santa Cruz

• Continue all social distancing practices, including keeping 6 feet of space, frequent hand washing and wearing face coverings

• Decorate your home and/or yard 

• Share a virtual meal with family and friends 

• Host online parties and/or contests 

• Prepare meals using traditional recipes and deliver to family and neighbors

• Attend holiday movie nights at drive-in venues 

• Visit holiday-themed outdoor art installations 

• Participate in drive-by events where everyone stays in their vehicle


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