Thanksgiving in 2020, A Big Question Mark


Tony Seidl and Jaren Spridco

This Thanksgiving is going to be different due to the pandemic. Many people will want to get together with their family this holiday as they have in the past, but it’s not going to be the same this year due to Covid concerns and regulations. With these new guidelines, the way that people celebrate is going to see a huge change, and people are going to have to make adjustments.

This Thanksgiving, people should remember to always get facts from trusted sources and be aware of what those sources have to say. Sources like the CDC and the World Health Organization and are good, unbiased sources. Following those sources will keep people safe.

Despite CDC guidelines some people are choosing to celebrate with their family, so there are going to be guidelines that need to be followed in order to keep them safe. Rachel Schulz, a sophomore at West said, “I have a lot of people gathering, I think it’s 14 people. That kind of makes me nervous.”

The CDC has made a way to keep people safe this holiday with guidelines. A couple of suggestions from the CDC are to “Encourage guests to avoid singing or shouting, especially indoors. Keep music levels down so people don’t have to shout or speak loudly to be heard.” If people are farther away from others, to keep the six feet distance in place, it can be harder to have discussions.

Some people are scared because of how dangerous it could become if they are around too many people and someone is sick. According to the CDC, “Two days after you start experiencing symptoms, you can spread Covid to at least four other people.” The symptoms could be barely noticeable but people can be affected in different ways. Everyone has to stay aware of this because they never know how it can infect them.
When the students at West were asked how many people they were planning on seeing for Thanksgiving, responses varied, from people who were only inviting four or five people, to people who were inviting up to 50 people to their house.

When asked whether or not he thought it would be dangerous to gather that many people for Thanksgiving, freshman Marcus Hernandez said, “Yeah, but we do this [get together for Thanksgiving] every year and this isn’t a tradition we can break so easily.” For some families, these holiday traditions are hard to break.

There are other people who are trying to be responsible by not inviting people over, in fear of spreading Covid through their entire family. In fact, a survey of West students showed that about 36% of them were planning on not having family over for Thanksgiving this year.

There are plenty of reasons why people don’t want to have others over for Thanksgiving, such as one given by freshman Clayton Schrimpf. He said, “Everyone will see their families and say they don’t have [Covid]”. This shows the different levels of precaution that families are taking this Thanksgiving.

It is a well-known fact that people with Covid can be asymptomatic, so if people are getting together this holiday and worried about spreading it, there are a couple of solutions. One is to have people get tested before they get together; that way they can skip the celebration if they do test positive. Another option would be to self-quarantine two weeks before the party just to make sure that people don’t get sick. Lastly, people can continue with the regular advisory of wearing a mask and keeping social distance. Taking advice from the CDC is the best option if people really want to stay safe because they have the most up to date information.

In short, Thanksgiving isn’t going to be quite the same this year. While yes, some people haven’t changed their plans for Thanksgiving, others aren’t seeing nearly as many people. Regardless of how our students are celebrating this holiday, they’re all trying to make the best out of a unique situation.