We are getting into the best part of the year: football, costumes, holidays, and food. Football has already been canceled for most, and even come back into the schedule for some, and I can already see it coming: the cancellation of Halloween.
Many cities have already adjusted their plans for the upcoming holiday, some aligning with the CDC recommendations completely, and others with fair compromises.
Don’t get me wrong–I get it.
How can we possibly clean the candy that our kids get? We already have Lysol Wipe shortages; we can’t waste any wiping off 200+ pieces of candy and sucker sticks. Some people already creeped out by the idea of visiting strangers’ homes during a pandemic.
Or, what about all our kids crowding together at the front door of some stranger’s house, grabbing their doorknob, everybody touching the doorbell? Gah!
Now dear stranger, who might or might not have COVID-19, please don’t breathe on my kids or cough, and please give us candy that we aren’t sure who has touched!
(Actually, one year I got the stomach flu at like 10:15 PM on Halloween night after I handed how many kids candy? I always wondered how many I passed it onto. Sorry North Liberty!)
I understand that some people don’t want to participate and I completely respect that.
But for my daughter, who loves Halloween and would stay up all night trick-or-treating, please don’t cancel Halloween! Can’t we be creative? Can the (probably) small population of us that want to risk it have this one holiday?
It’s actually one of the easiest holidays to incorporate social distancing.
- Most kids have masks and gloves as part of their costumes. This is good! This is how we feel safe going to restaurants or grocery stores, so why wouldn’t we feel safe doing it for Halloween. You can even make it fun! If your kid’s costume doesn’t come with a mask, can you puff paint a plain one for the special occasion? Crayola has cute Halloween face masks for sale.
- Instead of kids ringing doorbells and touching doorknobs, parents could sit outside at a table or chair and set up a bowl. Or just like my drive-up coffee place does, Lysol-wipe or spray the doorbell after each visitor!
- Don’t feel safe doing it? I totally respect that! Turn off your light and you don’t have to participate. That’s a pretty standard process we are all used to on Halloween. There are also lots of great local events to replace trick-or-treating- check them out!
- If everyone got their kids a pair of $1 tongs from Wal-Mart, each kid could use their own tongs to pull their candy out of the bowl! No tongs? Maybe the parents of the house have a pair that can be used by kids and then wiped off after use.
- Parents, be extra aware of others. If there are kids at the door, wait until they come back to the sidewalk before sending your kids up. Maintaining social distancing should be easy outside. It’s no different than taking a walk.
Kids need this holiday!
More than likely we have missed a year of parades, get-togethers, birthday parties, sports, and in-person learning. Let’s get comfortable being uncomfortable and finding ways to live with this virus while still maintaining safety where it makes sense. If we work together, we can make this holiday work while maintaining social distancing and staying as safe as we can.
Do you have other ideas on how to be safe during Halloween? Drop them below!
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