How can parents tackle trick-or-treating during the pandemic?

CDC recommendations for a pandemic friendly Halloween


Designed by Mya Cummins

Mya Cummins

Parents, especially those with young kids, are scrambling to deliver a somewhat normal Halloween experience this year, despite the pandemic. Nobody wants to have to cancel trick-or-treating, but with COVID-19 cases still on the rise and stricter guidelines being set, more creativity and alternatives to traditional Halloween activities are being brought to light. 

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) categorizes “traditional trick-or-treating” as high risk and many people find that label to be appropriate. Instead, “one way trick-or-treating”  is an alternative idea growing in popularity, and one the CDC recognizes as a lower risk activity. One-way trick-or-treating is defined by the CDC as, “where individually wrapped goodie bags are lined up for families to grab and go while continuing to social distance (such as at the end of a driveway or at the edge of a yard).”  The CDC goes on to say that people should wash their hands before assembling the goodie bags.

For parents seeking other low risk options, the CDC suggests activities such as virtual Halloween contests, Halloween scavenger hunts or a Halloween themed movie night.

Heather Drake, a resident of Crescent Hill and parent to three kids, has diligently planned out their Halloween night in order to keep her kids safe while still giving them the trick-or-treating experience.

“I will only let them if we can find a way to do so safely and if it can be socially distanced. Even if they get to, it will only be our street and at houses I know,” Drake said, “I probably will ‘quarantine’ my kids’ candy for a day or two as well before letting them have any from other homes.”

Erin Jones, a resident of the Highlands area, is also parent to three kids, although only one of whom is looking forward to trick-or-treating this year. 

 “As long as everyone is following CDC protocols, I would hope the kids would be safe and houses that don’t shouldn’t participate,” Jones said. 

Both Drake and Jones plan on handing out candy.

“I thought about maybe putting several pieces of candy into treat bags 48 hours before and leaving in a bowl on our porch,” Drake said.

Many parents believe that with the proper planning, maximum preparedness and a lot of hand sanitizer, neighborhoods might just be able to pull off a safe night of trick-or-treating.