The (socially distanced) Monster Mash

Halloween has been a part of the lives of people around the globe for many years. This year, Covid-19 will have a serious effect on the holiday.

Public Health Insider

Meghan Reyes, Reporter

   The Hungry Ghost Festival, All Saints Day, Hallowe’en, and as Americans know it: Halloween. This age-old tradition has been a part of many of our lives since birth. However, since the spread of COVID-19 has accelerated this old favorite may be in jeopardy.

   Considering the fall holiday may be a bit different this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released a list of activities to do this Halloween to make it a little more normal.

   “Normally for Halloween, we have our family who lives in the neighborhood come over. We usually order pizza and have snacks. Then we all get together, and you know go trick or treating,” Kim Keebler, an English teacher at Newsome High-School, says “This year because of COVID-19, we may end up doing what we usually do, but instead of handing out candy, we may give out goody bags instead.”

   It is highly recommended to partake in low-risk activities this Halloween. Members of the same household may carve pumpkins with their respective parties or carve pumpkins outside at a safe distance from neighbors.

   Virtual activities are among the lowest risk one can do this spooky season. Costume contests are one of the most popular things you can do in October, and having one virtually is the best way to still enjoy this activity while social distancing. 

   Scary movies are one of the best parts of Halloween; having an indoor movie marathon with the members of your household is a fun way to still tell scary stories.

   “Typically, my wife and I will sit and hand out candy to trick-or-treaters,” Says Coach Zachary Grogan, a math teacher and tennis coach at  Newsome High-School, “This year since we have a new baby, we plan on trick or treating. We will try to social distance as best we can, but it’s hard to put a mask on a baby.” 

   It is encouraged to partake in moderate-risk activities this Halloween. These are activities that can still be done if the proper steps are taken to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

    Participate in one-way trick-or-treating, where individually wrapped goodie bags are lined up for families to grab and go while continuing to social distance. Goodie bags are an easy way to give a sense of normalcy to trick-or-treating.

   Having a small group in an outdoor open-air costume parade where participants are six feet apart and socially distanced is a good alternative for costume parties.

   Instead of going to a haunted house, go to a one way, outdoor, open-air haunted forest where mask-wearing is enforced.

   Visit an apple orchard or a pumpkin patch where sanitizing is encouraged, mask-wearing is enforced and social distancing occurs to spend outdoor time this fall.

    High-risk activities are usual activities that people would normally do on Halloween. These activities are highly discouraged.

   Do not participate in traditional trick-or-treating or have a trunk-or-treat where cars are parked closely together.

     Refrain from attending crowded costume parties or large gatherings, such as indoor haunted houses or haunted hayrides, without social distancing guidelines. 

   Halloween is something we all remember from our childhood. This year it may be a bit different, but if taking the proper precautions to prevent the spread of Covid-19, it can still be memorable.