Making Halloween fun and safe for children during the pandemic

Making Halloween fun and safe for children during the pandemic

Kids love Halloween, and for good reason. Once a year, they can choose to be whoever or whatever they’d like, no matter how fantastical. They get to stay out late and enjoy extra time with their friends. And, of course, we can’t forget the piles of candy involved! With many families choosing to sit out Halloween last year, you might be wondering how to safely engage in this year’s festivities. Here’s a few ideas:

Go trick or treating

The good news is, this Halloween classic is relatively safe. It’s mostly done outdoors, where the risks of transmission are lower, and with proper physical distancing, your kids can enjoy an evening of candy collecting, just like the old days. Some homes have gotten creative, using candy chutes or leaving individual treat bags outdoors with hand sanitizer as an extra precaution. Remember to go over basic safety rules with your children before they go out. Make sure their costumes are visible in low light, that they go with a family member or friend, and to stay on the sidewalks.

Attend a local Halloween event

If you prefer that your kids avoid knocking on doors and encountering strangers, a Halloween festival or fair could be the way to go. These events will be compliant with public health guidelines, meaning you won’t have to worry about overcrowding or cleanliness. They’re also ideal if Halloween ends up being too rainy or cold for a good trick or treating experience. Your children can enjoy activities like crafts, pumpkin carving, haunted houses and costume contests indoors or under tents. Like trick or treating, remind the kids to keep their distance from others, wear their masks and wash their hands frequently.

Stay in with friends

You can create a perfectly spooktacular Halloween experience even if you keep the kids at home. With Halloween falling on a weekend this year, invite a few of your children’s friends (ideally in the same cohort) over for a night in. Weather permitting, you can hold most of the get-together in the backyard as an extra layer of safety. Prepare some easy activities like cookie decorating, queue up a few movies and set out some scary-looking snacks—they won’t even miss trick-or-treating! And to end the night right, keep a stash of candy on hand for everyone to take home at the end of the festivities.

Spend it with family

Whether you have immunocompromised family members, kids that need to isolate, or just feel more comfortable at home, you can still make Halloween fun with some fresh family traditions. Something as simple as a favourite dinner, and a new board game can be enough to make the day feel special for younger children. Don’t forget to dim the lights and invest in some spooky decor to set the mood.

Get out of town

Want to go big, but on your own terms? A weekend or day trip could be perfect for an extra dose of family fun. A visit to a haunted hiking trail or campground could be just the ticket for making some sweet Halloween memories. Many regional resorts and tourist destinations also offer a wealth of Halloween activities and events to enjoy that you can be confident will meet public health standards for COVID safety, so all that’s left for you to do is dive in! Don’t forget your masks!

There are lots of opportunities for safe Halloween fun, whatever your comfort level. Enjoy all the spooky festivities the day has to offer with your family and friends!