People associate New Year’s Eve with spectacular firework displays and massive social gatherings. New York’s annual ball drop in Times Square, for instance, usually has over 100,000 attendees.
With the world still facing the COVID-19 pandemic, you can expect some changes in NYE traditions, but you can still explore fun ideas for celebrating NYE during COVID-19.
How to Celebrate NYE During COVID-19
Across the world, governments are still implementing social distancing measures and enforcing restrictions on mass gatherings. However, you can still spend quality time with your loved ones this New Year’s Eve. We’ve compiled some creative ways to ensure that you can safely share in the joy and excitement of entering a new year.
1. Organize Virtual Parties
The number of Zoom video meetings and events skyrocketed during the lockdown, which means that despite strict social distancing measures, people still find means to connect and fulfill work, family, and social obligations. The same ingenuity can be applied to NYE celebrations.
Celebrate NYE 2020 virtually. Organize a video conference with your family and even include your relatives, friends, and acquaintances. Virtual reunions are also ideal for families with members based in other parts of the world. In these trying times, virtual companionship on special occasions like New Year’s Eve can strengthen family ties.
2. Watch Live Streams
Organizers are bringing NYE parties online. The renowned Times Square Ball Drop aired online last year with an estimated one million viewers.
During the upcoming 2021 NYE Ball Drop, you can watch live streams in the comfort of your home. Roast some chicken/turkey, open a bottle of wine, and tune in for firework displays on TV.
3. Camp in the Woods
You do not need to postpone all traveling this NYE 2021. In some places, Airbnb and other vacation rentals are opening their doors to guests under tight COVID-19 guidelines.
You can also head out to a lakeside cabin for glamping or rent a fully equipped RV for traditional camping in the woods.
4. Ski in the Mountains
Most Ski resorts are open this holiday season, albeit under strict health and safety protocols. You can bring the family to a ski resort and spend time exploring.
Some hotels organize mini firework displays to create a unique holiday experience for guests . Choose rooms with a balcony where you can safely enjoy the scenic mountain view.
To reduce physical contact with others, you could book rooms in places with a kitchen and an on-site restaurant.
5. Plan Family Parties
Large households can organize a house party, complete with table setup and buffet food. You can ask everyone to dress up in the spirit of the New Year oryou can decide on a theme to encourage everyone to invest in their NYE look, thus making your house party special.
Make your private party livelier with games and prizes, which the children will love. Indoor party game ideas are aplenty – treasure hunt, balloon popping, cotton ball race, message relay, pass the hat, and so on.
Organizing an indoor party takes some effort, but, there is the reward of your family’s smiles and glee.
6. Relax by Stargazing
Trade fireworks for a rare sighting of the Milky Way. The COVID-19 pandemic taught us all to value life’s simple pleasures, and a no-frill activity like stargazing on New Year’s Eve can be a memorable time with your loved ones.
Stargazing also rewards you with health benefits – it can relieve stress, enhance creativity, and conjure deep conversations.
Under the stars, you can set up a picnic or play some music. You can spend time deciding your New Year’s resolutions while gazing at a constellation.
7. Bake a Cake to Celebrate the New Year
Celebrations at home call for sumptuous meals. Turn the process of preparing for dinner into a simple, fun, and engaging celebration in itself. Bake cookies with the kids. Cook the family’s favorite pasta. Spend extra time garnishing your New Year’s cake. The extra hours you spend in the kitchen with your family will make New Year’s Eve memorable. You can assign roles to every household member so everyone takes part in the preparations.
Your creativity defines the limit for NYE celebration ideas, and you do not need to spend lavishly to enjoy a meaningful start to the year. If your family follows a tradition (e.g., gift-giving, attending a morning mass, setting resolutions), find ways to do these safely.
8. Safely Plan for NYE Travels
Traveling during New Year’s Eve may require more effort than usual due to the pandemic. Make certain to bring disinfectants and cleaning solutions with you.
Groceries, clothes, medicines and supplements, toiletries, and other travel essentials should cover the number of days of your stay. Research about your accommodations beforehand. Does the rental follow government-mandated cleaning protocols? Will I have access to medical help? Is the rental secluded and fully equipped?
While hotels are also a good option, vacation rentals may lessen the number of interactions you’ll have. Long-term stays require a more arduous preparation. Of course, the safest choice is to stay at home.
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