Trick or Treat?


Famveldman via Dreamstime

While Halloween will certainly look different this year, there are still safe ways to get in on the fun.

Caleigh Keating, Writer

With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and new guidance for events coming out of various sources such as the CDC and WHO seemingly every week, Americans have had to remain on their toes this year.

Especially with the holiday season approaching, many institutions are setting forth many ways to navigate a time of the year usually very focused on people coming together, something that is significantly complicated by a global pandemic. The first test of how holidays fare in the age of COVID and colder temperatures may lie in Halloween, which is just around the corner.

Many popular Halloween activities will have to look different this year, including the childhood favorite that is trick-or-treating. While trick-or-treating does happen outdoors, mitigating its risk some, the favorite Halloween pastime is definitely not without risk due to the high volume of contact with others it entails.

To help combat this while still letting kids get in on the fun, the CDC has highly encouraged trick-or-treaters to wear a mask, have hand sanitizer on hand to use after each stop, maintain social distancing and avoid direct contact with others, and wash their hands before touching and eating candy. In anticipation of a masked-up Halloween, many costume makers are also making costumes that include a matching mask, keeping everyone safe as well as in the Halloween spirit.

Other trick-or-treating solutions that have been suggested are giving treats outdoors, having a no contact trick or treating station with individual bags of treats, and keeping your trick or treating to a small circle of places and people you know and trust.

Another creative possibility that has been floated around is trunk-or-treating, where small groups meet up in a parking lot and decorate their cars with Halloween decorations, and have the kids in that group trick-or-treat at each of the cars. Those advocating for this say that this way, you can still have all the fun elements of this favorite Halloween pastime, but in a way that allows for more distance, less contact, and a fun, safe Halloween for all those involved.

While trick-or-treating may be put on hold this year for many and look very different for the rest, there are still many other fun and safe activities to do this fall holiday for those looking for a safe way to get in the festive spirit. The CDC, in fact, suggests a number of other safe and enjoyable fall activities that Americans can include in their Halloween plans as an alternative to more risky events such as trick-or-treating and large gatherings.

Some of these alternative solutions include traditional endeavors such as carving pumpkins or visiting the nearest apple orchard or pumpkin pumpkin patch, albeit in a safe way. The CDC also recommends taking a family walk around the neighborhood to admire everyone’s Halloween decorations.

Parents with little ones might indulge in the idea of having a family Halloween candy treasure hunt or one outside with some close friends, or having an outdoor costume parade.

Kids, teens, and adults of all ages can do fun spooky season activities like walk through corn mazes or haunted forests, or a drive through haunted house. Another popular idea is having an outdoor Halloween movie night with friends or having a family Halloween movie marathon, both complete with candy and Halloween cookies to get you in the spirit.

While Halloween will look very different this year and those everywhere may not be able to do many of their usual Halloween ventures, there are still many creative ways to get in the Halloween spirit and make for a fun, but safe, Halloween. Make sure to stay masked up!