The CDC Has Canceled Black Friday
Attention shoppers: Cyber Monday will have to satiate your Black Friday needs this year because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are warning Americans against “going shopping in crowded stores just before, on, or after Thanksgiving.”
In a new guide published by the CDC, they explain how best to go about fall activities amid the coronavirus pandemic. The guide breaks down autumnal events and happenings into three tiers for readers to have an easier time understanding how best to assess risk.
Low-risk activities include doing things at home, either alone or with people you live with. They also include non-contact delivery of “traditional family recipes for family and neighbors, especially those at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19,” virtual dinner parties, shopping online instead of in-person, and “watching sports events, parades, and movies from home.”
"Some of the highest-risk activities that the CDC says you should avoid include shopping in crowded stores, large sports events, parades, and large indoor gatherings with people not in your household."
Small gatherings with family and/or friends who live near you are counted as a moderate-risk activity, as are visits to pumpkin patches and orchards, so long as you adhere to social distancing protocols, wear a mask, and sanitize your hands before touching any of the produce. The CDC also says attending “small outdoor sports events with safety precautions in place” qualifies as moderate risk.
Not surprisingly, some of the highest-risk activities that the CDC says you should avoid include shopping in crowded stores, large sports events, parades, and large indoor gatherings with people not in your household. They also implore readers to steer clear of “alcohol or drugs, which can cloud judgment and increase risky behaviors.”
Luckily, with Cyber Monday deals often starting on Thanksgiving Day in recent years, shoppers shouldn’t have too hard of a time steering clear of crowded stores and staying safe at home. Even aspiring parade-goers won’t be tempted to head into New York City: The annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has fully pivoted to be virtual this year. They’ve done away with the traditional 2.5-mile route in an effort to “reduce by 75 percent the number of parade participants, who will be socially distanced during performances and required to wear face coverings,” as per CNN.
The network reports that “all parade participants will be at least 18 years old, with previously selected high school and college bands' performances deferred to the 2021 event and local professional marching and musical ensembles taking over this year.” Additionally, the 80 to 100 handlers that usually accompany the parade’s signature massive balloons throughout the city “will be replaced by specialty vehicles.”