2021 Member COVID Holiday Planning Guide

Members | October 29, 2021 | by Dee Pekruhn

As we approach our second (and hopefully last) COVID holiday season, we have compiled a variety of programs and practices that members are planning to offer so that the holiday season can be safe, merry and bright. Members submitted their plans from all across the country: Florida, Oregon, Virginia, Missouri, Vermont, Maryland, Connecticut, Iowa, and New Jersey.

As with last year, members across the country are taking a variety of approaches to managing the many aspects of holiday events, including how public spaces will be used, whether guests are permitted, and if so, what protocols will be in place, what kind of special events will be held and what dining venues and services will be available. Not surprisingly, there are regional differences, driven by important considerations such as weather, community positivity rates and local/ state restrictions or permissions. Below, we categorize these various approaches by region and holiday, with states represented by their usual abbreviations. Of course, these are all individually-submitted member solutions, so there will also be variations within a region that may or may not be represented here. Enjoy!

All Holidays – General Approaches

· Overall: Entirely back to normal (all spaces open to all residents and visitors) EXCEPT no entry to the general public. [A FL Member]

· Activities and Special Events: Held as normal, but all must mask inside and visitors must be screened [CT]

· AL and SNF: Residents may have vaccinated visitors for meals in-room only, or may go to the IL dining room with a vaccinated visitor [IA]

· Dining Room: CLOSED. [A MD and OR Member]

· Dining Room: OPEN to residents only; no visitors [A CT, VT and MO Member]

· Dining Room: OPEN to residents and vaccinated visitors [IA]

· Dining Room: All venues by reservation only; residents may pick up and have guests in their private residences for meals [CT]

· Public Spaces and Events: NO Food or Drink [VT]

· Private Parties: May be catered; must be socially distanced; no staff support. [MD]

· Visitors: Allowed in PRIVATE Residences [A CT and VT Member]

· Visitors: Out of state visitors must quarantine [VT]

· Visitors: Must mask 100% of the time in public spaces [ VT, MO]

· Visitors: Do NOT need to show proof of vaccination [MO]

· Visitors: Must show proof of vaccination. [MD]

Halloween – Specific Approaches

· Walk through “haunted" displays and roving bar cart with treats. [OR]

· Residents invited to wear costumes at dinner on Halloween Night [VT]

· Halloween Dinner for residents with “Thriller” dance by staff [VA]

· All Halloween events / parties to be held outdoors [CT]

· No private parties permitted in public spaces [VT]

Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Years – Specific Approaches

· All events will be held as usual, except if there is an outbreak [CT]

· Holiday Meals: No guests permitted [STATE]

· Holiday Meals: Buffet, resident only, at 50% capacity. [OR]

· Holiday Meals: Dinner party with music for residents only [MO]

· Holiday Meals: Open to residents and up to six vaccinated visitors; Dining Room at less than 50% capacity [IA]

· Holiday Meals: Residents may order pre-packaged holiday meals for themselves and guests for either pick up or delivery [IA]

· Private Events: Residents may reserve the space for large family, but no staff support and other residents may not attend [OR]

· Religious Events: Small indoor gathering for Hanukkah [OR]

· Regular Meals: Carryout or delivery only; order in for up to six people. [OR]

· Regular Meals: AL may have visitors in a private or outdoor dining space only [MO]

· Special Events: Concert for residents and guests; masked and socially distanced [MO]

· Special Events: Gifts for residents at their doorstep [MO]

· Special Events: Outdoors only [NJ]

· Special Events: Outdoor holiday lighting ceremony [OR]

· Special Events: New Year’s Eve will feature a year-end slide show and virtual toast by the CEO [OR]

· Visitors: Two guest apartments are available during the season [OR]

Have a COVID-safe holiday plan, practice or policy you don’t see listed here? Please share with Dee Pekruhn so that all may benefit from shared learning.