New CDC guidelines divide Halloween activities into low, medium, and high risk, reminding everyone there is no such thing as risk-free during a pandemic. Indiana State Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box said in areas with low numbers, Halloween can proceed, but local communities will decide.
Traditional trick-or-treating is on the CDC’s high-risk activity list. Here are some ideas to help you plan socially distanced trick-or-treating.
- Wash your hands.
- Wear a mask
- Minimize touch points
- Don’t congregate.
No regular Halloween masks this year. Get creative with COVID masks as costume pieces. Limit the people you’re walking around with, and to. This is not the year to attempt the record of Most Houses Visited. Have your child wait their turn, six feet away from others, at doorsteps.
Bring hand sanitizer. Put yourself in charge of what candy gets eaten en route; you may want to be the one to unwrap treats to pop in your child’s mouth.
One Person Hands Out Candy
Your inner Halloween enthusiast was made for this! Mad scientists, superheroes, and ninjas are a few iconic figures whose costumes include both masks and gloves. Drop candy into the open bag, not the little goblins’ hands. Make mask-wearing a requirement to receive your treats. A sign at the end of your driveway or steps can threaten ghostly repercussions if violated. Feel free to keep a stash of masks to launch via slingshot in lieu of giving candy to offenders.
After washing your hands, prepare treats in bags ahead of time while wearing a mask. They can be placed along your sidewalk, on your steps, hung on a fence or a clothesline–any setup that minimizes contact. This Ohio dad’s candy chute idea went viral.
Leveled Up Distribution
If you need a STEM project for a distance learning high schooler or college student, or if you’re so inclined, here’s your chance to shine.
- Noel Portugal’s design operates via Twitter
- Scott Miller’s design is Arduino-powered. Implementation requires more innovation for button pushing (Poking stick? Wiping down?), but your trick-or-treaters will appreciate it.
- Ben Rady’s Candy or Death design is super-entertaining. Address how to hit the buttons and eliminate the dish with instructions for recipients to hold their bag underneath the chute.
We hope the tips above will help you (and your friends and family) have a happy, healthy Halloween, despite COVID-19. After all, we’re all in this together!