6 ideas for a safer Halloween during COVID-19

Safe Halloween activities
Safe Halloween activities(Melynda Schauer)
Published: Oct. 2, 2020 at 7:39 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - With Halloween around the corner, many people are considering safer, alternate ways to celebrate than traditional door-to-door trick-or-treating, which could increase the spread COVID-19.

Safe Halloween activities
Safe Halloween activities(Melynda Schauer)

Here are six ideas for safer ways to celebrate Halloween this year:

  • A Halloween piñata in your backyard: Consider buying a Halloween piñata filled with candy and let your kids take turns hitting it until candy spills out! You can still get dressed up and enjoy eating candy outdoors, which is safer than being inside.
  • Social-distanced pumpkin carving: If you’d like to celebrate with a few friends, have them bring over their own pumpkins and carving tools and have a pumpkin carving contest outside. You can virtually include higher-risk family and friends in the fun by having them vote on social media for the best one and sharing photos!
  • Candy hide and seek: Think of it as a Halloween-themed Easter egg hunt in the backyard! Hide individually-wrapped candy or give kids clues for a scavenger hunt leading them to a plastic pumpkin filled with candy! Be sure to keep track of where you’ve hidden the candy to keep bugs or pets from finding it.
  • Neighborhood scavenger hunt: If you’re on a social media group with your neighbors, ask your neighbors to decorate for fall and create a Halloween scavenger hunt list a few days before the holiday. Families can walk through the neighborhood to spot different decorations, and parents can give their kids a treat for each item they spot!
  • Costume parade: For kids who love dressing up, this is a good option. Set a time and place for a small group of children and parents to meet outside, and be sure to stay 6 feet apart while walking along your own parade route. If it’s in a neighborhood, other neighbors can watch from their yards! You can also make it a virtual costume parade and invite friends and family to vote for the best costumes over Zoom.
  • Watch an outdoor movie: A good option for older kids is to have an outdoor movie night with a projector and screen! If you invite friends, have them bring their own chairs and snacks and keep at least 6 feet of distance in between. Poll the parents ahead of time to choose a movie that’s best for all the ages attending.
Safe Halloween activities
Safe Halloween activities(Melynda Schauer)

Several fall and Halloween activities are considered to be high-risk for spreading COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. High-risk activities include going to indoor haunted houses, indoor costume parties, traditional door-to-door trick-or-treating, and even going to a fall festival in a community where you don’t live.

The CDC also notes that a Halloween mask is not a replacement for a cloth mask intended to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“A costume mask should not be used unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers the mouth and nose and doesn’t leave gaps around the face. Do not wear a costume mask over a protective cloth mask because it can be dangerous if the costume mask makes it hard to breathe. Instead, consider using a Halloween-themed cloth mask,” the CDC website states.

The CDC offers their own list of both low-risk and moderate-risk alternatives to celebrate Halloween this year. You can see their list here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html#halloween

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