TL;DR: New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Philadelphia public health experts have been urging the public, for weeks now, not to gather this Thanksgiving. The coronavirus spreads easily at gatherings, large or small, and with COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths rising sharply, experts say the way to stay safest this holiday is to only celebrate with people you live with. Read more here. Small businesses have been struggling to stay afloat during the pandemic, so my colleague Elizabeth Wellington put together a guide on how to support them this Black Friday and Small Business Saturday.

— Ellie Silverman (@esilverman11, health@inquirer.com)

What you need to know:

🚫 Pennsylvania restaurants and bars are prohibited from serving beer and liquor tonight, beginning at 5 p.m. Gov. John Carney had a blunt message Tuesday for Pennsylvania residents looking for a place to enjoy a beer or a cocktail tonight: “Don’t come to Delaware to drink” and New Jersey is discouraging out-of-state travel, saying people who go beyond neighboring states should quarantine.

🦃 Thanksgiving 1918 took place during a deadly pandemic. What can it teach us?

🏥 President-elect Joe Biden calls on Americans to limit Thanksgiving plans and says he empathizes with families who will be celebrating without loved ones lost to the coronavirus.

🏈 Temple’s American Athletic Conference game on Saturday with Cincinnati at Lincoln Financial Field is canceled because of COVID-19 cases and the ensuing contact tracing of the athletes at both schools.

😷 Opinion: My 88-year-old patient said COVID-19 wasn’t keeping him from a holiday party. Here’s how I responded.

⚕️ First 6.4 million doses of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine could go out in mid-December to health-care workers.

📰 What’s going on in your county or neighborhood? We organized recent coverage of the coronavirus pandemic by local counties and Philly neighborhoods mentioned in the stories to make it easier for you to find the info you care about.

Local coronavirus cases

📈The coronavirus has swept across the Philadelphia region and cases continue to mount. The Inquirer and Spotlight PA are compiling geographic data on tests conducted, cases confirmed, and deaths caused by the virus. Track the spread here.

‘It’s not too late to change your plans for tomorrow,’ N.J. Gov. Phil Murphy says

New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Philadelphia public health experts have been urging the public, for weeks now, not to gather this Thanksgiving. The coronavirus spreads easily at gatherings, large or small, and with COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths rising sharply, experts say the way to stay safest this holiday is to only celebrate with people you live with. On Monday, Pennsylvania issued a stay-at-home advisory “strongly” urging people to stay home and Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said this week that he and his 80-year-old mother are forgoing their annual Thanksgiving dinner together. Read more here.

Shop at these local businesses on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday

Small businesses have been struggling to stay afloat during the pandemic, so my colleague Elizabeth Wellington put together a guide on how to support them this Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. “In a normal year [the holiday shopping season] brings in the bulk of these retailers’ sales,” said Adam Leiter, executive director of the East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District. “But this year, in this current environment, how we shop during the holiday season will play an enormous role in which shops will still be here at the end of the pandemic.” Read Elizabeth Wellington’s advice here on how to find local businesses in your neighborhood, how to support a Black-owned local business, and the best ways to shop to stay safe.

Helpful resources

You got this: How to do Thanksgiving during a pandemic

Our Things to Do newsletter is coming early this week, and it has all the resources you need to stay safe while celebrating Thanksgiving this year. There is advice for kid-friendly, safe activities to do this weekend, how to have a meaningful virtual dinner, and answers to any other question you may have. Read it here.

📮 When to mail packages so they will arrive in time for the holidays.

🏠 How to use a space heater without burning down your house.

🦃 Here’s what’s open and closed on Thursday across the Philadelphia region.

Have a social distancing tip or question to share? Let us know at health@inquirer.com and your input might be featured in a future edition of this newsletter.

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