Happy July! With Fourth of July right around the corner, make sure to take all of the necessary precautions with safety measures in place in order to host a 4th of July celebration amid novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)! The following below are eight (8) steps the staff at Something Greek compiled and highly recommends:
1. Limit Your Invitation List
Although we deeply miss our neighbors, co-workers, friends, sorority sisters or fraternity brothers, and family members, we must remain vigilant, safe, healthy, and well to protect them. Therefore, your invitation list to your Fourth of July social gathering must be limited, especially if you are inviting others outside of your residence.
But how many guests should be invited? The answer to this question depends on how large your outdoor property is, so that with limited guests, everyone is able to properly social distance six feet (6 ft.) apart from each other. Ideally, the less is better, and yes, you read that correctly. We only mentioned outdoor property, because outdoors offer superior ventilation than indoors. Therefore, guests should be invited to participate in limited contact, outdoor activities, such as badminton and tennis and/or drinking and eating only.
2. Set Up a Clean Patio & Restroom
Before Fourth of July, make sure to thoroughly clean your patio and its equipment and furniture. Then organize the equipment and furniture so that those who use them are able to adequately social distance. This will help to create a safe and welcoming environment for all to relax in.
In addition, make sure to thoroughly clean your restroom and to stock it with enough toilet paper, hand soap, and paper towel for all.
3. Set Up a Face Mask & Hand Sanitizing Station
Before inviting your first guest, make sure to set up a face mask or face covering and hand sanitizing station. This will provide guests who do not have civilian face masks or simple cloth face coverings with one, and access to hand sanitizer to sterilize their hands before and after joining in on the festivities if the restroom is unavailable.
Need a sorority or fraternity face mask or face covering? Then look no further, Something Greek offers a wide range of designs and colors, and we even sell ear protectors, ear savers, or ear strap extenders in three different designs as well! Choose between: letters, crests, or basic!
4. Wear Face Masks/Face Coverings
Follow the guidelines outlined by your state to safely host your 4th of July party. If you are inviting neighbors, co-workers, friends, sorority sisters or fraternity brothers, and family members outside of your residence, always, always, always wear a fabric face mask or cotton face mask before inviting your first guest.
However, wearing a protective face mask is only effective if it is worn correctly. Read more about "How to Use Cloth Face Masks & Face Coverings" in our blog!
Afterwards, only permit guests with face masks or face coverings to enter your property, and if they do not have one, then offer them one. Similar to restaurants, the only exception to this rule is drinking and eating. Everyone who is finished drinking and eating must resume wearing face masks or face coverings for everyone's safety.
5. Use a Non-contact Infrared Thermometer (NCIT)
Also, before allowing guests with face masks to enter your property, make sure to use a non-contact infrared thermometer (NCIT) to measure their surface temperature.
According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), "NCITs may be used to reduce cross-contamination risk and minimize the risk of spreading disease. While typically 98.6°F (37.0°C) is considered a 'normal' temperature, some studies have shown that 'normal' body temperature can be within a wide range, from 97°F (36.1°C) to 99°F (37.2°C)."
Make sure to read more about NCIT at the FDA's website as incorrect use of NCITs may lead to inaccurate temperature readings. Therefore, if anyone's temperature is above the advised, then you must refuse entry.
6. Social Distance
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), "Social distancing, also called 'physical distancing,' means keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home. To practice social or physical distancing stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people."
Based on the CDC, the best way to reduce the spread of COVID-19 is to limit face-to-face contact with others. Therefore, all guests must adhere to social distancing to slow the spread.
7. Use Disposable Kitchen Utensils
Although it is best to be environmentally-friendly, it is also best to use disposable kitchen utensils, such as cups, plates, forks, knives, and spoons during these uncertain times to slow the spread. While doing so, you also reduce the amount of cleanup work afterwards!
8. Sanitize/Sterilize Objects, Surfaces, & Spaces
Sanitize or sterilize frequently used or shared objects, surfaces, and spaces, such as door handles or door knobs and restrooms, as often as you can. Once your Fourth of July party is over, make sure to immediately clean up after everyone, the patio, its equipment, and its furniture, and the shared objects and spaces again.
We hope that our blog post was helpful and that everyone celebrates a happy 4th of July; remain vigilant, safe, healthy, and well!
Center for Devices and Radiological Health. "Non-Contact Infrared Thermometers." U.S. Food and Drug Administration, FDA, www.fda.gov/medical-devices/general-hospital-devices-and-supplies/non-contact-infrared-thermometers.
"Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 12 June 2020, www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/social-distancing.html.