This year has caused us all to make sacrifices, and find new and creative ideas to enjoy the things we once took for granted. With Halloween only one day away, it is important to find the best way to stay safe, but also enjoy the night in a way so everyone can have fun. Whether you have excited trick or treaters to keep busy or a family who just wants to celebrate the holiday. This article will offer some information on how you and those around you can enjoy a Halloween celebration while keeping everyone safe, and not endanger others.
Although traditional Halloween parties and trick or treating may not be the best option this year, there are tons of fun things you and your family can do within your own household and community. Most important is staying safe and making sure everyone wears their mask if you do go outside or out in public.
General Tips for Halloween 2020
The CDC has great online resources and information for those who would like help with understanding how to manage the risk Halloween 2020 can potentially bring. Again, the best advice they offer is to keep a social distance of at least 6 feet from people you do not live with. Like always, also wear a mask at all times when around people from outside your home. Also, a costume mask does not replace or do the same job as a medical/cloth face mask. There is no reason why a costume mask should be considered an alternative to a proper face mask. Masks are necessary to stop the spread of COVID and keep yourself and your children safe.
Safety should be the first concern this holiday, even if your kids tell you its candy and costumes. Speaking of costumes, even if a costume has gloves, washing your hands should be done regularly if you are in or visiting a public place. Wash your hands often and with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Even with alternative trick or treating methods in place, reminding your children to wash their hands after they come into contact with others is critical. Let’s take a look at some of the Lower Risk Activities you can do to keep the spirit of the holiday alive (even if it will feel a bit different this year).
Lower Risk Halloween Activities
- Carving and decorating pumpkins – this can be done from the comfort of your own home or outside in the yard with neighbors or friends, as long as the social distance is maintained.
- Decorating your house – not only does this give you something to do with the kids, but it also gives them something to look at to feel like this is just another normal Halloween.
- Host or participate in a virtual Halloween Costume contest – This is a cool way to show off your costumes to close friends and a cool way to come together.
- Have a Halloween Movie night – this is a great time to show your kids those classic horror movies from your youth. If the kids are too young, Netflix is full of Halloween specials appropriate for every age.
- Have a Halloween Scavenger Hunt in the back yard (or in an open park) – This is a good way to get the kids on their feet and moving around. Hide Halloween themed items and/or candy, and have your kids follow a map to discover hidden treats (aka CANDY)!
Moderate Risk Halloween Activities
- One-way Trick or treating – This can be done in a socially distanced parade, or just by walking down the street. You can organize with your community so that individually wrapped goodie bags or candy is available, meaning children do not need to go door to door or have anything handed to them. This might seem silly but can greatly help reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. If you prepare goodie bags, remember to wash your hands before and afterward.
- Small group outdoor parties – if you do this, make sure it is in the open air and you maintain at least 6 feet of social distancing best you can. Get creative and think of fun activities you can do responsibly, such as costume contests, or shadow puppet shows. No bobbing for apples this year.
- Open-air haunted forest – Many people have organized haunted trails for Halloween spooks! Only attend if masks and social distancing is enforced. If there is someone who often screams, give them additional space to stay safe.
- Visit a pumpkin patch or go apple picking – if you do so make sure to bring hand sanitizer to stay clean, and wear a mask at all times. Wash anything before and after you bring it home, or eat it.
- Outdoor Halloween Movie Night – all you need for this is a projector and a white bed sheet. Wait until the night is dark, go outside, and enjoy a spooky movie. Again stay safe by wearing a mask or maintaining appropriate distance from one another.
Higher Risk Halloween Activities
We do not recommend you take place in these activities, and avoiding these can help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- Traditional Trick or Treating
- Trunk or Treat – this is where trees are handed out from the trunk of cars lined up in parking lots. Although it is open-air, having many people gather in one area is not worth the risk.
- Indoor costume parties
- Indoor haunted houses
- Going on hayrides, or being in a small space with people who live outside your home.
- Traveling for a fall festival outside of your community.
If you do participate in any higher risk Halloween activities or think you may have been in contact with a contaminated individual, take extra precautions for 14 days after said event to protect those around you.
- Stay home as much as possible
- Avoid the elderly and those at increased risk of serious illness from COVID -19
- Consider getting a test if symptoms do not get better
Main Takeaway for Halloween 2020
In short, this year’s Halloween will be different. But, so has everything else in 2020. Although traditional trick or treating may not be the best way to celebrate Halloween this year. It opens up the door for new and exciting ideas and ways to celebrate. If you keep every tip from the CDC in mind, wear your masks, and maintain social distance, you can still have a good time with those you care about this holiday. Whether you decide to have a scavenger hunt, or a socially distant Halloween tick or treating parade, there is no wrong way to celebrate in 2020 if safety is the number one thing in mind.
Keep these tips in mind, but most importantly enjoy the night with your family and friends, and do your best to protect yourself and those around you. It falls on all our shoulders to help stop the spread of COVID, so do your best to protect those around you!