COVID-19 vs. Halloween

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Don’t forget your mask this spooky season! Photo Cred: Unsplash

Drew Maddox

Each year, everyone looks forward to the fun frights of Halloween. Whether it’s the traditional trick-or-treating, throwing a costume party, participating in a haunted house, or just being able to have a fun gathering with family and friends, Halloween is a holiday that most look forward to celebrating. This year, many people are wondering how they will celebrate one of their favorite times of the year during the midst of this crazy pandemic. 

Unfortunately, many view the traditional Halloween festivities as too much of a risk this year due to the spread of COVID-19. Many activities such as passing out candy or putting candies into bowls increase the chances of spreading unwanted germs. Having large gatherings for a Halloween party also risks the possible unwanted spread of COVID-19.  

Given these challenges, the CDC has provided some guidelines on how we can have fun and stay safe this year.

There are many ways you can still celebrate this year, each with different levels of risk. The CDC is encouraging everyone to follow the protocols of lower-risk activities to prevent the spread of COVID-19. There are many safe, yet still fun, alternatives you can choose from this year according to the CDC:

  • Carving or decorating pumpkins with members of your household 
  • Carving or decorating pumpkins outside, at a safe distance, with neighbors or friends
  • Decorating your house, apartment, or living space
  • Doing a Halloween scavenger hunt where children are given lists of Halloween-themed things to look for while they walk outdoors from house to house admiring Halloween decorations at a distance
  • Having a virtual Halloween costume contest
  • Having a Halloween movie night with people you live with
  • Having a scavenger hunt-style trick-or-treat search with your household members in or around your home rather than going house to house

 Although the CDC has made it clear they want people to choose the safest path, they have put out moderate-risk activities and high-risk activities to show the differences. If you aren’t as nervous about the virus and still want to have fun, maybe the moderate-risk activities that the CDC put together would be a better fit for you. The high-risk activities mainly include the original traditional Halloween activities, but these are definitely not recommended for people’s safety this year. Click here to see the CDC’s moderate-risk activities and high-risk activities to compare.

Día de Los Muertos is another commonly celebrated holiday near the Halloween season. This year, it lasts from Oct 31- Nov 2, extending the spooky season. COVID-19 will also make it challenging for families to celebrate their loved ones who have passed away by having traditional large gatherings. Fortunately, the CDC has helped by coming up with many fun and safer ways to celebrate, just like Halloween. Click here to read more about Día de Los Muertos and the different ways to celebrate safely this year.