BY Lorna Baxley
Happy fall, ya’ll! With fall break right around the corner, West High’s students are eagerly awaiting a week of time off from classes and homework. This year, many peoples’ plans for Thanksgiving may have to change due to COVID19.
Currently, Hamblen County is considered a Red Zone for the virus, which means that, according to the Center for Public Integrity, we had more than 100 new cases per 100,000 population last week. Federal reports recommend avoiding gatherings with more than ten people, staying at home if you have underlying health issues, and limiting interactions, among other things.
Because of these issues, plans for Thanksgiving this year will be rather unorthodox for many people. Carrie Kemmis, a sophomore at West High, says, “We can’t visit our grandmother’s house like we normally do for Thanksgiving break. We’re kind of sad about that, but we think it’s more important that she stays safe.” Many other students have had similar plan-changes.
The CDC recommends avoiding going shopping in large crowds on or after Thanksgiving, attending parades, and attending large indoor gatherings with people outside your own household. These are all common traditions on Thanksgiving, but this year, they may not be
possible. Instead, the CDC suggests having a small dinner party with only people who live in your household, having virtual hang-outs with friends and family who do not live in your household, and watching parades, sports, and other events from home. Staying safe is more important than anything right now.
Whatever you do this year on your Thanksgiving, make sure you stay safe, wear masks, and follow social distancing guidelines!