How to celebrate Halloween with COVID

Despite COVID-19 being a concern, we should not let the pandemic damper our spirits during this Halloween season. Instead of following usual traditions, Halloween can still be enjoyed by using safety precautions and alternative ways to partake in the festivities. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released a set of guidelines for parties and group gatherings to follow, as well as a list of activities and traditions that people can participate in this Halloween based on risk level. 

One example of a low-risk celebration is pumpkin carving with members of the same family or even neighbors and friends, at a safe distance, of course. Decorating the house or apartment is another great way to spread some Halloween spirit as well as having an online Halloween costume contest or pumpkin carving contest via Zoom. Another fun way to celebrate Halloween could be a horror movie marathon with members of your household. 

There is also a myriad of moderate risk activities that people can choose to participate in this Halloween. A creative alternative to traditional trick-or-treating involves goodie bags or candy cups that are already sorted out and lined in the front yard or driveway in order to minimize contact while upholding the tradition of trick-or-treating. Having a small, outdoor costume parade that includes social distancing is also a great way to display your costumes. Visiting a pumpkin patch with masks and staying six feet apart from others is another way to uphold a Halloween tradition for many. For those who are missing the theaters, an outdoor Halloween movie night is an entertaining way to enjoy a horror marathon with more than just your family or roommates. 

Attending a Halloween party that is held outdoors and utilizes masks and social distancing is also acceptable. However, if you are attending or hosting a Halloween party this spooky season, it is important to follow the CDC’s guidelines to ensure that not only is your party fun, but also safe. The party should be held outdoors to allow ventilation and reduce spread, and there should be a limited number of guests in order to minimize contact. It is important to attempt social distancing and wear masks whenever possible while noting that costume masks are not an acceptable and safe alternative to cloth and surgical masks. Supplying hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes are more excellent ways to promote hygiene during a gathering. It is also important to avoid hosting and attending buffet-style meal services and potlucks in order to minimize the spread of germs and the potential spread of the virus.  

With these guidelines in mind as well as several creative and fun alternatives to usual Halloween traditions, there should be no reason for COVID to ruin Halloween 2020.