Due to COVID-19, you’re probably not going to see communal candy bowls or large parties this Halloween. That doesn’t mean you need to keep your costumes and decorations in storage. Lots of families, neighborhoods, and communities are finding ways to have a safe, healthy and fun Halloween.
Consider one of these eight ideas to enjoy Halloween safely while finding ways to stay close to your friends and family.
1. Trick-or-Treat with Social Distancing
Traditional trick-or-treating already incorporates many of the ways to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Many costumes have masks, and most children trick-or-treat with their immediate family outdoors in their neighborhood.
Make trick-or-treating safer by planning to set up individual treat bags instead of offering a large candy bowl. This allows parents or children to take a treat without putting their hands into a communal bowl. You can also use individual bags if you’re participating in a “trunk-or-treat” event.
You can also work with your neighbors to have everyone sit outside at the end of their driveways to hand out candy. You’ll still get to see everyone’s costumes, but you won’t have lots of people ringing your doorbell or knocking on your door.
2. Plan a COVID-Friendly Costume
You can help minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 this Halloween by planning costumes that promote social distancing and face coverings. Try thinking outside the box for a costume that helps keep you distanced from other trick-or-treaters. For example, decorate a large moving box as an airplane or pirate ship and go as a pilot or pirate.
Wearing a mask if one of the best ways to help slow the spread of the Coronavirus. From superheroes to scary monsters, lots of costumes have masks. You should be sure your costume uses a mask that covers your mouth and nose. Try adding a lightweight medical or fabric mask if your costume’s mask has holes.
Skip the gloves if your costume has them. Wearing the same gloves while touching different objects — like candy bowls or car door handles — could spread germs from one surface to another. Choose to leave your hands bare and keep a bottle of hand sanitizer with you so you can freshen up between houses.
3. Halloween-Themed Scavenger Hunt
Get in the Halloween spirit with a photo scavenger hunt. Create a list of Halloween-themed objects or events and take pictures as you find each. Gather friends and family together virtually in a group message, email chain or social media group so everyone can participate. Everyone can share their pictures with the group as they complete their scavenger hunt.
Having a hard time thinking of items for your scavenger hunt list? Start with these ideas to get going:
- Spider web decorations
- Fake gravestones
- Carved pumpkins
- A specific type of candy
- Someone dressed as a superhero
- Someone dressed as a witch
- A dog in a costume
- Orange holiday lights
4. Glow-in-the-Dark Egg Hunt
Hunting for plastic eggs filled with treats or toys doesn’t have to be limited to Easter. You can buy glow in the dark Halloween eggs and host a Halloween egg hunt. Fill your eggs with candy and other goodies and then leave them under a light so they’ll glow brightly at night.
To keep your egg hunt socially distant and safe, consider dropping off a basket of sanitized plastic eggs at your neighbors’ homes. They can then hide them in their own yard for family members to find. You could also coordinate with your neighbors to hide eggs in each other’s yards. Just be sure to wash your hands before and after the Halloween egg hunt.
5. Scary Movie Marathon
If your family is too old for trick-or-treating, but still wants to get in on the Halloween fun, a family movie marathon is a great option. You can build a pillow and blanket fort in your living room or head outside and set up an outdoor theatre.
Decide if you’d rather watch scary movies, funny Halloween-themed movies or a combination of both. You can also add Halloween episodes from your favorite TV shows. Plan to make Halloween-themed snacks with your family beforehand. Try adding “spiders” made of black olives to a pizza or throwing some candy corn into your popcorn for a festive treat.
6. Reverse Trick-or-Treating
Drive-by birthday, graduation and wedding celebrations have become popular while everyone stays home to help slow the spread of COVID-19. They work by having the host stand in their yard or driveway while friends and family drive by in their cars with signs and balloons.
Plan a similar event for your neighborhood this Halloween with drive-by reverse trick-or-treating. Children hang out in their costumes on their lawn or in the driveway while neighborhood members drive by and gently toss candy and other treats like a parade. The kids still get to collect candy and show off their costumes. Neighborhoods with a lot of children may want to make a schedule so everyone has a chance to both see their neighbors’ costumes and get candy at home.
7. Virtual Halloween Party
Virtual dance parties, fitness classes and game nights are an easy way to stay connected with loved ones without leaving home. Use your favorite video chatting platform to host a Halloween party in the same fashion.
The best part of a virtual Halloween party is you can invite friends and family from across the country and around the world. Encourage everyone to dress up and show off their costumes by dancing to a spooky-themed playlist. If dancing isn’t your style, host a pumpkin carving or decorating party from home.
8. Drive-Thru Haunted House
Do you prefer the scary parts of Halloween over candy and pumpkin carving? Many haunted houses are changing to a drive-thru format for socially-distant scaring. Instead of walking through a creepy house, you and your family can take a drive down a haunted road or through a haunted neighborhood.
Halloween might look a little different this year, but you can still find ways to have fun with your family. Start making your COVID-friendly plans now so you can get your friends, family or neighborhood on board with your socially-distant Halloween ideas.