First Governor Andrew Cuomo set a limit on private gatherings at 10 people. Now the CDC is advising against hugging, shouting, singing, drinking and loud music on Thanksgiving.

The COVID-19 epidemic is getting worse, and the CDC says small household gatherings are an important contributor to the rise in cases. The CDC offers considerations to slow the spread if you are gathering for the holidays this year.

  • Guests should avoid direct contact, including handshakes and hugs, with others not from their household.
  • Host outdoor rather than indoor gatherings as much as possible. Even outdoors, require guests to wear masks when not eating or drinking.
  • Increase ventilation by opening windows and doors to the extent that is safe and feasible based on the weather, or by placing central air and heating on continuous circulation.
  • Encourage guests to avoid singing or shouting, especially indoors. Keep music levels down so people don’t have to shout or speak loudly to be heard.
  • Encourage guests to bring food and drinks for themselves and for members of their own household only; avoid potluck-style gatherings.
  • Limit the consumption of alcohol to avoid limiting your judgement of practicing COVID-19 safety measures.
  • Wear a mask while preparing food for or serving food to others who don’t live in your household.
  • "In-person gatherings that bring together family members or friends from different households, including college students returning home, pose varying levels of risk," the CDC said.

    Travel increases the chance of getting and spreading the virus. Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others. If you can't stay home, celebrate the holidays responsibly this year and follow precautions.