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There is so much to look forward to during the holiday season. Whether it’s eating delicious food, giving gifts, or spending time together, there is always something to celebrate. Although the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has changed the ways we areable to safely celebrate, there are still lots of ways to make this year’s holiday season merry and bright!

Before planning your holiday celebrations, be sure to check out the holiday guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and your own city or town to help make sure your activities will be safe and enjoyable for everyone. Next, explore our activity ideas below that are fit for families of all ages and offer a mix of in-person and virtual fun!

Cheery Crafts

In-person: Encourage your kids to make a centerpiece for a table (like a turkey, cornucopia, or a snow globe). Decorate your windows with paper snowflakes or other wintery designs. Collect leaves or pine cones outside and use them to make a holiday wreath for your front door.

Online: Have a virtual craft party. Decide on a holiday craft and invite friends to make their own while video chatting.

Parade Party

In-person: Children of all ages can dress up in costumes or create a “float” using items from around the house. Kids can show off their creations by parading them around your yard,sidewalk, or home.

Online: Welcome other families and friends to make their own floats and share photos and videos online. You could even hold a virtual Thanksgiving Day parade!

Festive Outdoor Fun

In-person: Take a walk around your neighborhood as a family to look at holiday decorations or collect leaves and other items for crafts. More sporty families could play a game of catch, make their own obstacle course, or set up a “goal” in your yard and see who can get the most points.

Online: Challenge friends and family to make their own obstacle courses at home. Create an online poll so everyone can vote on who has the best one. Older kids can use social media to get friends in on the creative challenge.

Merry Movie Marathon

In-person: Pour a mug of hot cocoa, grab the popcorn, and snuggle up on the couch with your favorite holiday movie. If your family has older and younger kids,consider making it a double feature, letting the younger kids choose the first film (recommendations from Common Sense Media), while older kids or teens can pick a late night flick for watching after their younger siblings go to sleep.

Online: Set-up a “watch party” through a streaming service so that friends and family outside of your home can chat and watch along at the same time.

Seasonal Show

In-person: Older kids can help younger kids make up a story with a holiday theme,or pick a favorite book to act out. Kids can dress up in costumes from items you have around the house, and perform it for your family after dinner.

Online: Get the whole family involved, and perform the play for other families and friends through video chat.