Motorized louvered pergolas are becoming more popular as homeowners look for ways to improve their outdoor spaces to make them comfortable and safer for family and friends during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Epidemiologists have predicted for some time that cooler weather would send more gatherings indoors and that factor would cause COVID-19 infections to dramatically rise because there is not enough space between people and because there is no continuous fresh air flow.
But motorized louvered pergolas give you an outdoor setting with fresh air flow that facilitates social distancing. With the addition of heating systems and electronic amenities, you and your family and friends can have the best of indoors holiday fun and traditions in the safer environment of an outdoor space with a motorized louvered pergola.
So, in addition to holding your holiday gatherings in your motorized louvered pergola, here are some other tips to ensure that your time with family and friends is as COVID-19 safe as possible.
The first tip is to make sure that seating reflects social distancing guidelines. In general, people from the same household can be seated together, but each household should be seated at least six feet from other households.
While this may mean that your traditional holiday get-togethers may be smaller because it will mean you can’t get have as many people together as in the past, it will still allow you to have some guests to carry on holiday traditions with. It is all about creativity.
If you do not yet have a heating system installed in your motorized louvered pergola, consider having the main holiday meal in the middle of the day rather than late in the afternoon or early evening. This will eliminate mealtime being when the day is getting cooler, and people naturally start to drift indoors.
Another tip is that if you normally serve your holiday meals buffet style, this is the year to do something different. Serving food buffet style means that a lot of people are touching the food and this can facilitate the spread of COVID-19.
Instead, you can either ask a single household to be responsible for cooking or you can order a takeout holiday meal from a restaurant. Designate one of your guests to be the sole person responsible for serving the food to everyone. Use disposal (after every serving) plates, bowls, cups, napkins, and flatware for people to eat with.
Another option that many people who are hosting holiday gatherings this year are using is having a picnic meal. Each household who is attending will prepare, bring, and eat the food for their own household, which virtually eliminates any risk of exposure to COVID-19.
Remember that the same guidelines for meals should be applied to snacks, appetizers, drinks, and deserts. Instead of serving plates of hors d’oeuvres, bowls of chips and pretzels, large bottles of water, tea, and soda, and whole pies and cakes, use single serving packaging for appetizers and snacks, individual-sized cans or bottles for drinks, and precut slices of pies and cakes.
Another tip to keep guests outside is to make sure that you have everything you need outside before they get there. If you plan well in advance, you can make a checklist of what needs to go outside so you make sure that nothing is forgotten.
A final tip is to make sure children have outdoor activities that allow them to be socially distanced. These can include games like frisbee or football or activities like drawing chalk art on sidewalks.
If you’d like to learn more about motorized louvered pergolas, you can speak with our experienced staff at McNeill Palm.