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Have a Blast this Fourth of July—But Don’t Forget About COVID

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If you felt like missing out of Fourth of July parties left your summer incomplete, you aren’t alone. This time last year the pandemic was sweeping across our nation, towns and cities everywhere canceled Independence Day events, and it left many people wondering how to enjoy a holiday that’s famous for its gatherings. But thanks to the COVID vaccine, this year’s Independence Day parties are a go—just remember to take a few simple safety measures.

Hosting at Home 

Throwing a party on your own turf is the best plan if you’re still concerned about the spread of COVID-19. The great outdoors is considered to be the safest setting when gathering with non-family members, as infectious disease experts believe fresh air dilutes concentrations of the virus. Keep your guest list small. Your main consideration should be their comfort—this means creating an honest dialogue ahead of time to ensure everyone feels safe attending your Fourth of July fest. 

You might also consider setting up two sections: one for revelers who are vaccinated and without masks, and another for your masked friends. And you can even create a socially distanced middle ground where the two can mingle. Still, ask all guests—with or without masks—to follow social distancing guidelines. And don’t forget to create hand-washing and sanitizing stations at every sink. 

When it comes to food and drinks, it’s probably best to ask guests to bring their own. If you’d rather not, plastic utensils, paper plates, and single servings are your best bet.

Going Out 

If you decide to attend one of the plethora of community Independence Day events taking place this year, remember that staying outside—especially for larger gatherings—is better than going inside. The mask mandate in Indiana has ended, but if you’d feel better protected behind a mask, by all means, wear one. Maybe go for a patriotic red, white and blue! 

If others aren’t masking up at an event, social distancing is your friend. You can create a safer space around yourself by using a large blanket and putting yourself and your family in the middle of it. As always, wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face. And if you feel sick, don’t attend any events but opt, instead, to stay home. 

Many people feel optimistic and hopeful as this Independence Day approaches, and there’s good reason to. All Hoosiers ages 12 and up are eligible for the COVID vaccine. If you have not yet received one, you can register through the Indiana State Department of Health website. Meanwhile, continue following guidelines and practicing social distancing etiquette so that everyone can feel safe to celebrate and enjoy the holiday!

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