Ottawa businesses adapt to COVID-19 Thanksgiving
OTTAWA -- If you’re planning a big family get-together this weekend, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada Dr. Theresa Tam says, please don’t.
“The most sensible thing to do is to keep to your family. Immediate social circle for now. Because you’ve seen the epidemic curve and this is not the time to be complacent about anything,” she said on Monday.
Ottawa’s Medical Officer of Health Vera Etches agrees.
“We’re asking that you spend Thanksgivingonly with people in your household.”
This unusual holiday has some Ottawa businesses offering another way to celebrate.
“We have the roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings,” says Nick Bouris. Owner of Chances R restaurant in College Square.
Bouris says you have the option to dine-in or pick up, with customers choosing a particular time slot.
For those dining in, glass partitions have been placed between each table to better separate guests.
At the Brookstreet Hotel in Kanata, a similar option for those looking to enjoy turkey dinner without the hassle.
“We have our takeaway turkey,” says Mark Nisbett, director of sales and marketing at the Brookstreet. “Which is a fully prepared meal with all the sides. It’s a turkey that’s between 15 and 18 pounds.”
While Nisbett says it will feed eight to ten people, most families this year will be carving a much smaller size turkey since social circles have been put on pause by the Ontario government.
The Brookstreet is also offering a dine-in option. But if you’d rather dine at home, you don’t need to go all out with the full size bird; the hotel’s three-course meal is available for takeout as well.
Thyme and Again is another place that has become a popular option for families this year, selling out of their dinner for two in four days, and their turkey package in a week.
“We offered our Thanksgiving packages this year, plus our dinners for two. We sold out immediately,” owner Sheila Whyte says. “So we have some dinners for one available. We’ve got some beautiful pumpkin pies. We’re selling gravy and cranberry sauce and all those wonderful things.”
Like many businesses, they’ve had to get a bit creative with how they offered their meals.
“Of course this year there were lots of pivots and lots of changes to be able to produce Thanksgiving,” Whyte said. “Everything’s going out in disposable containers and boxes.”
So even though this year’s Thanksgiving might be smaller, or even virtual in some cases, there are plenty options available in Ottawa that are convenient, and safe, and delicious.