Whether it is socially distanced or virtual, the holidays could look a lot different this year because of the pandemic.

INDIANAPOLIS — Now that November is here, it’s time to start thinking about the traditional family holidays.

This year’s holidays could end up looking a lot different because of the pandemic. The state of Indiana recommends family members coming together wear masks (when not eating and drinking) and trying to social distance when possible.

Other families might be looking at a virtual celebration and how to make that work.

Our partners at Yelp created six ideas for a socially-distanced gathering in Indy.

1. Virtual wine tasting party with Sip & Share Wines

Order a wine tasting kit (choose four or seven mini bottles) and sign up for a virtual wine party! RSVP to an existing tasting or host your own group. Owner Nicole is a blast and gets attendees talking, interacting, and laughing through their screens. Haven’t tried Indy-based Sip & Share Wines yet? They were just featured in Forbes magazine and named the Pacers/Key Bank 2020 Small Business of the Year award.

2. Candlelit farm-to-table meal with Jason Michael Thomas of Urban Awareness Gardens

Say goodbye to stuffy secluded rooms and enjoy a private dinner at Jason’s table on the farm with your fellow board members, family, or best friends. Jason will tailor the courses to delight your senses while taking into account any group dietary or flavor preferences to serve a unique meal you’re going to be talking about for a long time. Dinners can be hosted at the farm or at a location of your choice. 

3. Virtual group game night with Kingmakers

Book the most hilarious night you’ve had this year. Sign up for an online board game experience, hosted by a Kingmakers Game Guide and designed to bring teams together with laughter and play. Coming soon: the “sip and play” version, in which Sip & Share Wines (yes, the one mentioned above!) delivers drinks to participants before the game. 

4. A special culinary experience offered by the online silent auction to benefit chef Greg Hardesty 

Studio C chef and owner Greg Hardesty was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in July and the community is banding together to help. As he undergoes chemotherapy treatments, other local chefs created a silent auction with 40 local culinary prizes including private dinners, gift cards, fine wine + rare spirits, and holiday gifts in support of him and his family. Bid on an experience or donate here.

5. RSVP to Yelp’s Totally Virtual Bazaar

This annual holiday soirée is decking the halls in a different way this year. Join your favorite local businesses all of November and December through virtual events that are bound to spice up your at-home festivities. RSVP for free cozy cocktail classes, twinkle-light yoga, sugar-cookie showdowns and much more. Then, gather around the fire and join Yelp in shopping local this season as you browse the official Yelp Bazaar gift guide, featuring your favorite businesses from last year’s event. Attendees must RSVP to specific events. All ages are welcome.

6. Virtual chocolate tasting with Xchocol’Art

Owner Joann of Xchocol’Art, Carmel’s premiere artisan chocolate shop, offers a virtual chocolate tasting of your dark-chocolate dreams. Message her to book a class, receive your chocolate-tasting kit in the mail, and savor Joann’s enthusiasm, knowledge, and spunk as you take notes on the sweet tasting sheet. From the cacao pod to the final product, you’ll taste the difference in chocolates from around the world. It’s a true adventure in your living room. 

Yelp Indy invites you to join them in support of local businesses by nominating yourself for the Yelp Indy Elite Squad, granting access to special experiences and events.

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