It’s every socialite’s worst nightmare. You have a birthday or special occasion coming up. You want to be able to celebrate with your nearest and dearest. You want to be able to make new memories that will last a lifetime. You know that this occasion will never come again. However, the current COVID crisis can place a huge damper on your party spirit. Of course, the last thing you want to do is endanger anyone’s health, let alone that of your closest friends and family members. Still, it just won’t be the same if you can’t see the familiar faces that give you so much joy. The good news, however, is that you can have the best of both worlds- seeing the people who mean the most to you in the whole world while also ensuring that everyone under your roof stays safe.
Sure, it may feel jarring not being able to hug, kiss, dance up close with or even shake hands with your friends. Nonetheless, that’s not to say that you can’t make social distancing work at your birthday party, get together or big event.
Here are some tips to help you throw the ultimate social distancing party…
Keep it outside
A garden party or BBQ is a great way to enjoy the pleasure of your friends’ company safely. Your garden will likely afford you more available space than any one room of your home. What’s more, what little we know of COVID-19 suggests that it’s much harder to transmit outdoors and cannot survive on outdoor surfaces for as long as it can indoors. As such, everyone can enjoy themselves at an outdoor party knowing that they’re a little safer.
Make it fancy dress
Some of your guests may feel safer wearing masks. Rather than pushing against this, why not lean into it and make it a fancy dress party, with guests designing elaborate costumes that incorporate their masks around a party theme. This is a fun way to make sure everyone feels safe, while also allowing people to better get into the swing of things.
Masquerade balls, dances, and banquets—the list goes on for an outdoor costume party. And the highlight is everyone wearing their best clothes inspired by the medieval or Renaissance era.
Everyone loses their inhibitions a little when they’re wearing a costume!
Adopt an a la carte approach to snacks
If you want to keep your guests safe, you may need to rethink your approach to party food. The traditional finger food buffets may not prove sensible in the current climate. While the virus can’t be transmitted through the food we eat, we know that it can be transmitted when we touch infected surfaces and then touch our faces.
You may need to take a different approach to your party food, serving up pre-made a la carte plates of all kinds of tasty treats both savoury and sweet. Perhaps have a menu with 2 or 3 options which guests can choose. You can then bring these plates over to them so they can enjoy the deliciousness worry-free. This may also be a good way to cater to your vegan / gluten free guests.
Hold a silly photo competition
Just because you have to keep your distance doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun. For instance, photo booth hire has always been a fun staple for parties. And while you and your friends may not be able to pile in together while social distancing, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a whole lot of fun with them. A silly photo competition can be a fantastic ice breaker for the group.
Guests can enter individually or with partners or flatmates who share the same address. They can pose with all manner of fun props (make sure every one has access to hand sanitiser) and there can be a prize for the best silly photo.
It’s a great way to add the laughter that’s so essential to a good party.
Keep an eye on the drinks situation
You don’t have to insist on this being a teetotal occasion. And people should be allowed to have a drink if it helps them to get into the party spirit. At the same time, however, it’s in everyone’s best interests to exercise a little common sense. Recent events have shown us pretty conclusively that drunk people can’t social distance. The more we drink, the more we feel the need to invade one another’s personal space, raise our voices and show physical affection to the people we love. And that can complicate things.
It may be worth having a drink limit in place, or at the very least encouraging your guests to know their limits.
You can still throw a party to remember while keeping everyone safe in these difficult times.