The Raymond James Stadium hosted Super Bowls XXXV and XLIII and will host Super Bowl LV. ((Photo Credit: Anika Schmid/Achona Online))
The Raymond James Stadium hosted Super Bowls XXXV and XLIII and will host Super Bowl LV.

(Photo Credit: Anika Schmid/Achona Online)

Expectations for 2021

December 17, 2020

Moving forward into 2021 is an exciting and daunting journey, and people are optimistic about new opportunities. Next year will bring many changes, and some rescheduled events will start to occur. We should be realistic when setting expectations and goals, but at the same time, it is important to maintain a positive attitude. 

COVID and a Vaccine

The works of a COVID-19 vaccine are expected to be distributed by the end of the year since the first U.S. doses of Pfizer/BioNTech’s vaccine were administered in New York City on Dec. 14. According to the CDC, there might not be enough supplies for all adults to receive the vaccine, so they are expected to receive it later in 2021. 

“We plan to have about 40 million doses of the vaccine available to us and distributed in the U.S. by the end of this year,” said Moncef Slaoui, the scientific head of Operation Warp Speed.

“I’m going to work on understanding if things get canceled or changed, it’s for the best because of COVID and waiting patiently and following the guidelines until things can go back to normal. I hope that everyone can work together to stop COVID spreading so we can have big gatherings again and won’t have to wear masks,” said Camille Petrarca (’24).

Travel

As a result of the pandemic, vacations are more limited than in the past. When Americans are able to travel, they are more concerned about safety regulations than the cost of traveling. The travel comparison website Squaremouth reported that 95% of policies purchased for trips in 2021 include trip cancellation coverage. 

“I am planning on going to Boston because I do every year,” said Chloe Pleasants (’24).

2020 saw a massive increase in RV rentals, and these road trips are predicted to be one of the top choices for domestic travel next year.

If you plan to travel, be sure that the airline you choose follows safety guidelines for COVID. Consumerism directly affects travel, so supporting local businesses is important to their stability during this time. 

Sports

Football fans will be happy to know that the Super Bowl LV will be held on Feb. 7 at the Raymond James Stadium. As of October, the NFL is planning on attendance at 20% capacity but hopes that it will be more. 

Despite being delayed for 2021, the Tokyo Olympics are still named after 2020 and will be from July 23 to Aug. 8. Climbing, karate, skateboarding, and surfing are debuting next year. Baseball and softball are returning for the first time since 2008. 

Entertainment

As artists continue to release music, many tours have been rescheduled for 2021, and if not next year, perhaps they will occur in early 2022. Movies will be played in theaters, but many will be released simultaneously on streaming services such as Disney+ and HBO Max. As movies are given new release dates, Rotten Tomatoes listed their 69 most anticipated movies of 2021, including “Black Widow,” “Dune,” and more. 

“I’m looking forward to ‘A Quiet Place Part II’ to come out in April,” said Katherine Yencle-Torres (’24).

Academy and Tampa Events

The second semester provides a great chance to strive for more knowledge and improvements in grades. 

Julia Talbot (’22) said, “I’m excited about Biology, study hall, and art.”

Academy students can look forward to the sixth annual Cross Out Cancer 5K, which has options for in-person or virtual participation on Jan. 9. On Feb. 24, the Junior Ring ceremony will take place after school on the athletic field. Graduation is planned for May 24, and it will either be at the Straz Center, which is to be determined by the city, or at Academy.  

The 2021 Children’s Gasparilla Parade will be on Apr. 10, and is sponsored by Chick-fil-A. Additionally, the Gasparilla Pirate Fest is set for Apr. 17. 

Goals

Personal improvement will be a common goal as we approach the new year. However, it is advised not to be too hard on yourself. Unproductiveness and lack of motivation are to be expected. We should be hopeful for future events, but it’s fine if things are canceled or rescheduled. We are making slow adjustments to return to normality while continuing to be cautious. 

“Some goals for the new year are to get better grades, spend more time with my family, and focus on my technique at dance. I’m just going to keep journaling and telling myself that everything takes time and that when something needs to get done well, it’s going to take time,” said Yencle-Torres.

To improve your mental wellbeing, you can find motivation by giving yourself a purpose through hobbies or goals. Effective stress management is essential to mental health, and some forms of this can be yoga, meditation, or spending time outside. Expressing feelings may be difficult, but it can be relieving to talk about them, letting stress off your shoulders. Speak with someone you trust, such as a friend, teacher, or counselor, and tell them what is bothering you. Exercise can give you a refreshing and positive outlook. Fitness routines have been disrupted with gyms and fitness centers’ closure, but there are still plenty of ways to stay active. Verywell Fit is a great resource for healthy eating information and exercise guidelines.

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