Football is back this week, and we’re ready to celebrate (go Panthers!) While the pandemic may limit your usual tailgating plans, there are plenty of ways you can enjoy football season while staying safe. Keep these tips in mind: 

1. Social distancing is key. 

Remember, social distancing is crucial. It isn’t safe to gather with anyone outside of your household.

That said, you can still enjoy the company of your neighbors– from a safe distance! Have you tried a porch party or backyard tailgate? The concept is similar to a block party, only you and your neighbors enjoy the games from your own your porch, yard or driveways. You can shout and cheer with everyone while staying appropriately distanced. Watch the game, enjoy snacks, and support your team while practicing prevention measures to protect everyone you care about.

2. Plan your game day snacks ahead of time. 

What is football season without the snacks? According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it’s best to use delivery or curbside pickup when grocery shopping. If you have to go to the store, remember that COVID-19 safety recommendations are still in effect. Here are some helpful pointers to help you make your trip as safe and effective as possible: 

  • Decide what you need to buy early. 
  • Create a shopping list to ensure you don’t forget anything. 
  • Shop during off-peak hours. 
  • Make sure to practice the 3 W’s

3. Get in the spirit. 

Just because your kickoff party is a little more low-key than usual, that doesn’t mean your walls should be bare. Decorate your house with your team’s colors, wear your favorite player’s jersey and ring in every touchdown with a noisemaker. Now is the best time to show your team spirit with some cool decor! 

Updated February 2021 to reflect the latest Public Health guidelines.