This Super Bowl Sunday, officials want you to avoid traditional gatherings with people outside of your home.
"Enjoy the game, watch it on television, but do it with the immediate members of your family, the people of your household," Dr. Anthony Fauci said on NBC's "TODAY" show on Wednesday.
"Every time we do have something like this, there always is a spike — be it a holiday, Christmas, New Year's, Thanksgiving ... Super Bowl is a big deal in the United States," said Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. "As much fun as it is to get together at a big Super Bowl party, now is not the time to do that."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued specific Super Bowl guidance this year as the Kansas City Chiefs prepare to face off against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
"The safest way to celebrate events is at home with the people who live with you," the CDC said.
"We could have kind of mini superspreader events or little hot spots all around the country starting with those indoor gatherings or even potentially outdoor gatherings if we don’t follow the recommendations," health policy expert Dr. Kavita Patel said Wednesday.
Holding a virtual party could be the way to go, according to the CDC. You can share snack ideas with friends from afar or start a text chain to discuss the plays, the commercials and The Weeknd's halftime performance.
But if you must gather with people from outside your household, do so outside and sit 6 feet apart, the CDC said. Always wear a mask, and avoid touching, including high-fives when your team takes the lead. And limit shouting or cheering loudly, as you are more likely to spread the virus.
"Clap, stomp your feet, or bring (or provide) hand-held noisemakers instead," the CDC said.
The CDC also recommended that people bring their own food, plates, cups, utensils, condiments and drinks. Speaking of drinks, the CDC suggested limiting how many beers you drink as "consuming alcohol may make you less likely to follow COVID-19 safety measures."
With 25,000 expected at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, for the big game, and expectations that people will gather at bars and restaurants across the country, the CDC outlined many of the same guidelines for larger gatherings: wear a mask, stay 6 feet apart, bring your own food if possible and avoid high-traffic areas like bathrooms and concessions during halftime or when the game is over.
But no precaution is as good as staying home.
"Attending large gatherings like the Super Bowl increases your risk of getting and spreading Covid-19," the CDC said.