The coronavirus pandemic has uprooted the way many of us have become accustomed to living over the course of our day to day lives.  Below are some important tips on how to host a safe and socially-distanced party during the coronavirus pandemic to ensure the health, safety, and well being of all involved during these summer months and until an acceptable vaccine has been developed for all. 

1.  Have a Cinderella Prince and Princess Party: Invite children and young ones to come to a socially-distanced royal ball at your home, filled with pudding and ice cream, and special treats for all who attend.  Children can even sign up for particular roles at the party, such as party helper, glass (window) attendant, ballroom dance instructor in socially-distanced chalk circles, tea party table, party drink table attendant who can make name charms for the drinks, and end of the night sweeper when the party has ended.  Making the roles both fun and safe for children will ensure that they are still able to enjoy themselves, and their families have comfort in knowing they are being safe as well. This may also work for older teenagers, with some minor adjustments made for older teens. 

2.   Ensure everyone at the party knows what it means to practice social distancing, and encourage it throughout the party for the safety and well being of everyone.  Social distancing requires people to be at a minimum of 6 feet apart from each other, and this can be accomplished using unique and innovative ways to implement this healthy practice, such as by setting up individual bean bags or blankets, chalk circles that are spaced apart for outdoor events, or even using name tags, place cards, or stickers at a table to ensure the seating is further apart, and guests have a place to sit of their own.       This may work for students who enjoy hosting fancier parties.  

  3.  Encourage social distancing by challenging friends to come up with a list of games that are naturally socially-distanced and apart, and give a point to whoever comes up with a socially distanced game for entertainment.  This makes social distancing not only a challenging game, but it also gets kids and young adults thinking as they explore games that are safe, and will build upon their critical thinking skills and knowledge as they engage in this type of activity. A prize can also be given out to the person who scores the most points in coming up with socially-distanced games, which serves as an incentive for being safe and creative. Some games that already encourage social distancing for many age groups include pin the tail on the donkey, tennis, ping-pong, darts, virtual video games, backgammon, chess, volleyball, monopoly and other classic board games.  Also, swimming within roped sections of a pool, with an added bonus to anyone who states the benefits of chlorine with regards to this virus. 

4.  Host a storytime event in socially-distance naptime circles that is complete with blankets, night-lights or table lamps, movies, accessories and books that will delight and entertain children attending the sleepover. Children can also share their own stories. 

5.  Play a socially-distanced game of cops and robbers outside- kids already have the masks! Have kids stand 6 feet apart and aim at the “robbers” with their water toys! 

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