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Utensils at outdoor pot luck family gathering?
Old 04-24-2021, 11:37 AM
  #1

Many PTers have now started having 'extended family' gatherings outdoors after all have been vaccinated. Before the vaccine, it was suggested that serving utensils at these gatherings be handled only by one person, rather than all serving themselves.

For those who have recently participated in such events, were you still careful about what each person handled? What other pandemic guidelines are your families keeping in place from before most people were vaccinated?


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Old 04-24-2021, 12:39 PM
  #2

I wish I knew. I bet youíll be fine, but Iím the opposite of you, still erring on the side of caution. I will attend my first small group (all vaccinated) get-together mid-May. Weíve agreed to outdoors, distanced, and no shared food. Iím probably not having the fun youíre enjoying.
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Old 04-24-2021, 01:33 PM
  #3

I’ve been out with vaccinated friends and we probably aren’t as careful as we should be. The other day a friend handed me a mint.

At my sister’s house everything had one serving spook/fork per dish.

It’s hard to remain vigilant when with vaccinated friends and family.

I’m still hyper vigilant in public places. I went to a mostly empty museum and kept my mask on the whole time.
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Old 04-24-2021, 01:46 PM
  #4

I have not had large gatherings. A good friend went to her daughter’s birthday party last weekend. It was held outside, 20-25 people, no food on tables, one person did the serving with gloves and a mask, there was appetizers served then dinner, tables were apart, plastic utensils were wrapped and tied in paper napkins, and drinks were cans or bottles. They had a cake but no blowing out of candles. Most of the adults there were vaccinated. My friend’s son in law planned the party and was cautious because he knew that many people have not gone out in a year and were hesitant to go to a large gathering. She said it was fabulous and everyone had a great time. I would do something similar with extended family.
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Old 04-24-2021, 01:48 PM
  #5

I thought the whole thing about COVID spreading via surfaces was largely debunked? I think if you are breathing the same air as an infected person, that's how it spreads. Not because you both used the salad tongs? I could be wrong but that is how we are approaching it, which is why take out isn't scary and outdoor gatherings of a few are pretty safe.


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Old 04-24-2021, 02:02 PM
  #6

I would probably do the same thing I did pre-pandemic. If it's a group larger than my immediate family I would squirt some sanitizer in my hands after touching the utensils before I touched any of my food with my hands.
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Old 04-24-2021, 02:04 PM
  #7

I agree with MalloryJames. This whole business about shared surfaces seems to be a holdover from the hype of last year. The CDC isnít recommending the constant surface sanitation anymore, so it doesnít seem like touching shared utensils should be an issue.
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Old 04-24-2021, 03:30 PM
  #8

I think placing a bottle of hand sanitizer at the end of the line so people can sanitize after they have handled common utensils would make sense.
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Old 04-24-2021, 04:40 PM
  #9

I'd put hand sanitizer at the front and the end of the serving line.
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no serving utensils
Old 04-25-2021, 08:06 AM
  #10

Depending on the occasion, and your ability to to keep food at safe temperatures, you may eliminate the need for serving utensils by preparing small plates and wrapping in plastic wrap. Then your guests will choose their plates as they go. For example, you may make up a small plate with a special sandwich, chips and lettuce and tomato. Maybe you would make a plate with a piece of chicken, potato salad and fresh veggies. You could even mix up choices on each plate. Down the line you could make up small dessert plates, mixing up choices again.

The problem is you can't completely eliminate the need to touch things others have touched. I like the idea of putting out hand sanitizer and alcohol wipes in different spots and hoping your guests will use them. Maybe a note inviting them to do so will help. Then during the event, someone can go along and wipe things down now and then, especially shared things like serving utensil handles.


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Old 04-25-2021, 09:49 AM
  #11

I would appreciate the safety precautions being more extreme than lax. Everyone is at a different place in their approach to getting back to social gatherings. I would be more cautious to make sure that those who have been hyper cautious will feel comfortable. I would agree to sanitizer at each end of the food line. I do believe that surface hygiene is not as critical as it was perceived in the beginning.

I did go on an outing with 2 vaccinated friends recently. We agreed to drive together, but with masks and windows cracked when possible. I would not have felt comfortable in an enclosed car for an hour in both directions without masks. I was glad that my friends agreed. If they had not, I would have driven myself.
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