Trick-Or- Treating During a Pandemic

Bella Cutean, Staff Writer

Halloween. Even the mention of the holiday may evoke memories of trick or treating as a little kid, family parties, or perhaps celebrating with close friends. 2020 has found a way to take all of these traditions and alter them in one way or another. Change does not have to be a bad thing, but there is one certainty: things will be different than the years before. How different will the first fall holiday since Covid-19 really be is the question on many people’s minds as the spooky season rolls around. Will parents be able to take their little ones out for trick or treating?  Or will restrictions prevent any of the Halloween traditions from previous years? Parents and kids  have these questions and undoubtedly more. 

There are multiple news sources that have been putting out information on how to make smart decisions regarding Halloween during a pandemic. Although not all concerns will be addressed, hopefully resources will be helpful in making sure that people will have the information necessary to stay safe during such an uncertain situation. The CDC is one of the key resources that has come out with information about how to tackle Halloween activities, and many already tend to look to this organization when they have pandemic related questions. On the CDC website they have broken up Halloween activities into high, medium, and low risk categories. The low risk category activities represent things that individuals can do with relative certainty that they will be safe to some extent. These activities include: carving pumpkins with household members or outside with neighbors or close friends while social distancing, putting up decorations, virtual Halloween costume contests, movie nights with household members, and Halloween themed scavenger hunts. Most of the low risk activities involve only being around individuals that you live with, but this is of course simply to limit the transmission and work to keep everyone safe. 

The next category is medium risk, and these activities are things that can be done but are not considered being the absolute safest option during a pandemic. These activities include: setting out individually wrapped goodie bags outside on your porch for trick or treaters, a small group outdoors costume parade with social distancing, costume parties outdoors with masks, pumpkin patches or orchards where mask wearing is enforced and there is social distancing, and an outdoor Halloween movie night where social distancing is enforced. A main aspect of any Halloween activity this year is still going to be wearing masks and social distancing no matter what individuals decide to participate in. 

The last category is high risk, and these activities are much riskier than any in the previous categories. They are to be done at one’s own risk and participating in them may increase the risk for the spread of the virus which is why they are deemed high risk. These activities include: traditional trick or treating, trunk-or-treats, crowded costume parties indoors, indoor haunted houses, hayrides with individuals who do not live in your household, and traveling to a fall festival that is not in your community. Many of these activities would be seen as normal fall and Halloween fun in past years, but in the midst of a pandemic they are not safe in terms of controlling and preventing the spread of Covid-19.

This Halloween will undoubtedly look completely different than anything that we have seen before. Yet there are still ways that the festive feel can be brought into this uncertain circumstance. Given the proper information, individuals then must decide what they will do and how they want to approach making it a fun Halloween during a pandemic. Above all everyone should make their best effort to be safe and protect others around them,while simultaneously doing their best to bring a spooky fall feeling to the season that so many wait for all year.