An invisible enemy haunts us this Halloween, and its name is COVID-19. This year the streets won’t be filled with children dressed as goblins and ghouls, and doorbells will remain silent on the night of All Hallows’ Eve. Despite the cancelled festivals and hayrides, parents can still provide low-risk ways to have frightful fun.
ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is discouraging trick-or-treating this year due to COVID-19. This news is a real bummer, especially to little ones who love celebrating Halloween traditions. Calyn Parker says, “The more households you visit, the greater the chance that germs may be spread and linger…especially as herds of children head from door to door, too.”
High-risk Halloween activities that should be avoided, according to the CDC, include the following:
- Door-to-door trick-or-treating
- Trunk-or-treat events with treats handed out to large groups from trunks of cars
- Indoor costume parties
- Indoor haunted houses
- Hayrides/tractor rides with people who are not in your household
- Going to a fall festival outside your community
Parents and their children can still find creative ways to participate in plenty of festive activities.
Below are some of the low-risk Halloween activities mentioned by the CDC:
- Carving/decorating pumpkins with your family or at a safe distance with neighbors/friends
- Decorating your home for the season
- Halloween scavenger hunt where children find Halloween-themed things while walking outdoors from house-to-house
- Halloween movie night with your family
- Halloween scavenger hunt style trick-or-treat search, where your household searches around your home for treats
If you do decide to venture out, here are a few recommendations to help reduce your risk for getting or spreading the virus:
- Wear a mask when around people who don’t live in your household.
- Do not use a costume mask as a substitute for a cloth mask unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers your mouth and nose and doesn’t leave gaps around your face.
- Do not wear a costume mask over a cloth mask because it can be dangerous if the costume mask makes it hard to breathe.
- Avoid close contact by staying 6 feet apart from anyone who is not from your household.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer (with at least 60 percent alcohol).