Get the CDC’s Halloween Safety Guidelines for COVID-19 Here
It’s October 2020. It’s been almost ten months since the pandemic started and our lives are completely different. From work to family activities and even grocery shopping, we had to re-learn to live with an invisible virus that could lurk anywhere.
The situation may seem even more depressing when we think about the upcoming Holiday season. Could the most wonderful time of the year turn into the saddest month of 2020?
I think the first trial will be this Halloween. If we think of parades, trick or treating or costume parties, none of the Halloween traditions seems safe anymore – or are they?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has now issued new guidelines on how you can celebrate October 31st while keeping yourself save from COVID-19. To make things clear from the start, the CDC has split the most popular Halloween activities in three categories:
- Lower risk
- Moderate risk
- Higher risk
Let’s have a look at which activities are safe and how you can protect your loved ones while still enjoying one of the most iconic celebrations in American culture:
Lower risk activities
The main activity on this list is carving and decorating pumpkins with other members of your household; you can either do this at home or outside as long as you can maintain social distancing rules.
Another great way to spend Halloween is by doing a scavenger hunt! To play the game, hide a few Halloween-themed objects in the proximity of your home and put them on a list; then, offer each list to your kids and help them search for each item. Once again, you should plan this activity in regards with social distancing rules.
Why give up on Halloween costume contests when you can still hold one – virtually? All you need is a smartphone to create a video conference with multiple other parents whose kids want to show off their costumes. Although it may not feel like tradition to you, your children will definitely have fun!
Baking together and planning a horror movie night are also on CDC’s lower risk Halloween activities. In fact, I think the main point here is proving that you can still have plenty of fun by putting your imagination to work.
Moderate risk activities
All activities in this category can be done if you take all safety measures recommended by the CDC.
For example, you can trick or treat in your neighborhood by wrapping up individual sweets bars and lining them up at your front door. This way, children can come and grab their package while maintaining social distance. Before you start preparing the treats, make sure to wash your hands thoroughly.
It might also be possible to organize an open-air costume parade as long as you keep social distance rules so that everyone is at least 6 feet apart. You may draw circles by using Halloween-themed decorations to make things more exciting for the children.
According to the CDC, you can also go for an open-air, walk-through haunted forest along with other participants as long as you can maintain social distancing rules. If you do pick this option, though, make sure that you bring a mask to wear in case it gets too crowded.
Another great option is to visit pumpkin patches or orchards since it’s an outdoor activity where you can keep social distancing. However, it’s recommended that you bring a mask and avoid touching pumpkins or other items displayed at the patch. If you or your children do touch anything, use hand sanitizer as soon as possible.
In regards to the Halloween movie night idea, you could also host this activity outdoors and have close family members or neighbors invited. Once again, make sure to place chairs, blankets or other furniture at least 6 feet apart for extra safety.
Higher risk activities
This category includes only activities that pose a threat to your health and are not recommended by the CDC. Let’s have a look:
- Trick-or-treating where children are handed treats as they go from door to door;
- Attending costume parties held indoors with little to no chance for social distancing;
- Visiting indoor haunted houses with high risk of the rooms getting crowded;
- Going on tractor rides or hayrides with people other than your household members;
- Using drugs or alcohol which may lead to cloudy judgement and risky decisions.
What are your plans for this Halloween? Share your ideas in the comment section and let’s help each other find joy even through these difficult times!