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How to enjoy Halloween in 2020

Check out our tips for making Halloween fun for kids and families.

Child holding Jack-o-lantern bucket with mask
Posted on Oct 28, 2020, 12:00:00 PM GMT

Whether you live in a state with strict guidelines or one that is open, the recent pandemic could make this year’s Halloween different than what we’ve experienced before. But while costume parties, school parades and indoor celebrations may be halted this year, you can still find ways to safely enjoy the holiday festivities.

Treat yourself

If kids can’t go out to get treats, you can set up family trick or treating in and around the house with bowls of candy in each room (have kids knock on the room door and you answer) or you can have a scavenger hunt for candy you’ve hidden. You can also make your own tasty Halloween-themed goodies like candy apples, marshmallow mummies, pretzel candy spiderwebs or a haunted house cake. Check out the ideas and recipes on the Country Living website.

Set up a scary screener

If the weather is still conducive, you can have an outdoor spooky movie night. You can either put up a movie screen or bring out a big TV. Set up seats six feet apart but limit the amount of people you invite to make sure all can be socially distant. Make it even more fun by having guests dress up as their favorite character as they watch.

Another option is to watch a movie virtually. Some streaming video services like Netflix, Disney Plus and Hulu offer what is called a Teleparty where you can watch a show in sync with friends and chat about it simultaneously.

Drive by attractions

Some towns around the country are offering drive by events where guests can decorate their cars and wear costumes and safely see Halloween themed experiences such as pumpkin carving displays, haunted attractions or creepy theatrical scenes to scare you along the ride.

Trick-or-treat safely

If don’t want to forgo the annual ritual of filling up your bags and bellies with candy or handing out treats to kids, there are some ways to minimize the risk. If you’re going out, make sure you keep six feet away from others, so that means don’t trick-or-treat in a large group, wear a mask, not just a costume mask and sanitize your hands frequently. Don’t eat any candy until you’ve washed your hands and cleaned the candy itself.

If you’re giving out candy, there have been some creative viral ideas to make distribution safer.

  • Make individual treat bags, so kids aren’t grabbing candy from one bowl.
  • Place sticks with candy attached to it and display it out on the lawn for kids to pick up.
  • Get a PVC pipe and make a chute to slide candy down to trick-or-treaters. Attach it to a handrail or if you’re ambitious, make a bigger one and drop it out of a window.
  • Make a scavenger hunt and have kids find candy in the yard.
  • Hang candy from a clothesline for kids to grab and go.
  • Use tongs to hand out candy from your bowl instead of using hands.
  • Set up an outdoor table with separate candy bags and put out hand sanitizer for children to use after they pick up.

Go virtual

One of the safest ways to enjoy Halloween is to host an online party. Some benefits are that masks are not required and your costume will be visible for all to see since it won’t be concealed by a coat. You can blast Halloween-themed music for a virtual dance party, play online games like charades or Halloween trivia and get crafty by having a pumpkin decorating contest.

While the CDC discourages traditional trick-or treating, you should assess the outbreak risk in your area and observe local guidelines. Being outside won’t eliminate all risk, but if you keep your distance from others, wear a mask, stay local and stick with your own family or no more than one other family, you can enjoy a safer trick or treating experience. Avoid going to door to door and look for homes with safer candy pickup options like the creative ones listed above. Happy Halloween!

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