Go Rams! How to have fun, COVID-safe Super Bowl watch party minus Zoom

By Helen Jeong and Vincent Nguyen

To prevent your Super Bowl watch parties from turning into a super spreader event, experts recommend serving food individually at an outdoor event. Photo by Shutterstock.

Angelenos can already feel the buzz. Our local NFL team, the Rams, will play in its own backyard of Inglewood this Sunday at Super Bowl LVI. They’ll be facing the Cincinnati Bengals at the $5 billion SoFi Stadium. Fans on both sides are excited. 

This is the second Super Bowl during the coronavirus pandemic. So how can folks have fun while staying safe? 

Wanna have a fun Super Bowl watch party but tired of Zoom gatherings? We have tips on how to safely host an in-person party to root for the LA Rams. Video by KCRW Events.

Enjoy the warm weather and go outside

Much of the Southland will be under a heat advisory through the weekend. It could be one of the hottest Super Bowl Sundays.

“We're expecting high temperatures for Super Bowl Sunday to be somewhere in the mid 80s,” meteorologist David Sweet predicts. 

KCRW’s Events team recommends spending a couple of hours before Sunday to tidy up your backyard or patio, and spacing out guests’ chairs. 

If you want to be extra cautious about separating your guests, you can add clear, pop-up tents, recommends Marley Majcher, the CEO of “The Party Goddess!”

“They could have their own little bubble, still be part of the party and see what's going on,” Majcher says.

The event planner explains that clear pop-tents can also be a way to separate guests by the team they root for. Since the tents are clear, they can interact with one another from a distance while being able to see their reactions. 

Marley Majcher, who organized numerous outdoor parties during the pandemic, says having clear tents can accommodate Super Bowl watch party guests who are immunocompromised.

It’s also helpful to have hand sanitizer available at every corner in your backyard. 

Plus, find a stable spot to put your TV so it won’t wobble, and use an outdoor electrical cable.

Fun fact: LA holds the record of hosting the warmest Super Bowl. It was 84 degrees when Super Bowl VII took place at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on January 14, 1973.  

Combine the fun, separate food and drinks

A good Super Bowl party needs food. Wings, chips and pizza are all fan favorites, but grabbing and passing them around could spread the virus. 

“When you start thinking of all the different ways that you could create something that people could pick up, it opens up the doors a lot more,” Majcher says. 

It’s best to serve your tasty appetizers in separate containers, says Majcher. She likes to place individual sandwiches and salads in a jar or waffle cone, which guests can quickly grab.

Guests can also label their own cups with markers to prevent mixing, suggests the KCRW Events team.

If you have kids around for the game, Majcher suggests picking up art supplies for them to decorate disposable containers like plain, takeout boxes.

“When you think of what could do double duty, it becomes even more fun.”

Event planner Marley Majcher recommends serving food separately in individual cups and jars to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Photo by Shutterstock.

Mask or no mask?

California is ending the indoor masking requirement for vaccinated people next week. If you don’t have adequate outdoor space to celebrate the big game and must take the party inside, what do you do?

It’s a good idea to require your guests to still wear a mask indoors, especially those who aren’t vaccinated, says Dr. Shira Shafir, associate professor of epidemiology and community health sciences at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health.

“KN94, KN95 and N95 masks are the best options when it comes to preventing the transmission of COVID.”

If you are holding a party outdoors but giving guests the access to indoor bathrooms, gently remind them to wear facial coverings when going inside.

Test your guests

“If everyone who is at the party is vaccinated — and boosted — and gets a negative rapid test result on the day of the Super Bowl party, then there’s no need for masking indoors,” says Dr. Shafir. 

However, she reminds hosts to still be cautious. “Anyone who is infected with Omicron can spread the virus to others, even if they are vaccinated or don’t have symptoms. Any time multiple households gather together, especially indoors, there is a risk of infection.”

Don't wanna host a party? Watch the game outdoors at these local Black-owned businesses: 

  • Taste of Inglewood”: The three-day block party is shutting down the streets surrounding the stadium leading up to the game.
  • Wood Urban Kitchen: The BBQ joint, located along the route to SoFi, offers its popular 12-hour smoked brisket.
  • Emma Habesha: A family-owned Ethiopian restaurant serves Shiro and vegetarian goodies.
  • Little Belize: This spot cooks up traditional Belizean stew oxtail or stew chicken with a side of rice and beans, potato salad and plantains.