Halloween 2020 will come with some restrictions because of COVID-19, but it can still be spooktacular. Typically Halloween is a very exciting time for children in Canada complete with costumes, candy, and trick-or-treating. For children, and even some adults, Halloween is the best night of the year!
During a traditional Halloween, people hand out treats and candy to children who come to their door. Children happily travel from house to house and call out “trick or treat” to receive a sweet treat!
This year we’ll have to be even more creative when celebrating Halloween 2020 because of COVID-19 safety concerns. Many parents will have concerns about their children going door-to-door to collect candy. Similarly, many residents may be concerned about handing out candy.
Public health units across Canada may have different Halloween guidelines, based on COVID-19 cases in your region. And if you live in a COVID-19 hotspot, your public health unit may decide to cancel Halloween. If this is your child’s first Halloween in Canada, this might be disappointing news. But there are still fun and exciting ways to have a spooktacular Halloween.
Tips to Celebrate Halloween 2020 Safely
1. Follow the advice of local public health leaders
Your local public health leaders will provide advice and guidelines based on COVID-19 cases in your city or region. These guidelines are in place to protect you, your family, and the community where you live from COVID-19. If you live in a COVID-19 hotspot, your public health unit will likely cancel door-to-door trick-or-treating. A hotspot exists when there is an outbreak and an increasing number of COVID-19 cases.
For example, if you live in British Columbia or Ontario where cases are higher than in other regions in Canada you can check out what public health units advise.
2. Avoid indoor parties for Halloween 2020
With colder weather and people moving to more indoor activities, this can increase the risk of COVID-19 spread. So it’s important to avoid indoor Halloween parties and get-togethers with people outside of your household during the fall and winter months. Remember to keep your social bubble small.
3. Practice physical distancing (where trick-or-treating is allowed)
If your public health unit says that trick-or-treating is safe in your community, remember to practice physical distancing, staying at least 2 metres (or 6 feet) away from others. In all of the excitement of the night, children may forget why this is important. So, parents, you may have to remind your little ghosts and goblins to avoid other groups of children.
Check out how creative you can get if you want to hand out candy with physical distancing in mind:
4. Wear a mask
It’s also important for you and your children to wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth when trick-or-treating. If you buy a Halloween costume, it may come with a plastic mask. But it’s better if your child wears a cloth mask with at least two layers of breathable fabric.
A plastic mask will not provide enough protection against the virus. So it’s best to use a cloth mask with a Halloween theme that fits tightly around the nose and mouth.
If you plan to give out candy, you should also wear a cloth mask to protect yourself.
5. Use hand sanitizer
Public health experts advise frequent hand washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds to limit COVID-19 spread. But if you’ll be out for Halloween, you can bring some hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol to keep hands clean.
It’s important to ensure that your child does not swallow hand sanitizer. Always read the directions provided on hand sanitizers to keep your children safe.
6. Consider other activities for Halloween 2020
If your local public health unit has canceled door-to-door trick or treating here are some other low-risk activities.
- Carve pumpkins with your children
Carving pumpkins is another fun Halloween tradition. To carve a pumpkin, you cut holes in it to create a scary, cheerful, or funny face. This is a fun activity for the whole family and when you’re done carving the pumpkin, you can also roast the pumpkin seeds for a tasty and healthy snack.
- Have a virtual Halloween 2020 costume contest
A big part of Halloween excitement is when children get to dress up in their costumes. Planning a clever costume is part of the fun. Halloween costumes can be anything that your child imagines. With creativity and some do-it-yourself skills, you can even make your child’s costume. You can browse online for costume ideas to see what appeals to them.
Even if children can’t go door-to-door this year, they can still design and wear their costumes to celebrate the holiday. Once they have designed their costume they can have a virtual Halloween party with neighbours, friends, and family.
- Have a Halloween 2020 scavenger hunt
If you can’t go door-to-door to collect candy, consider a scavenger hunt for Halloween treats with your household members in your home. Kids can get dressed in their costumes and search for treats in a few rooms or all over the house. Play some scary Halloween music to set the mood.
So even though we may celebrate Halloween 2020 a little differently, we can still have a safe, healthy, and spooktacular holiday!
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