HALLOWEEN IN 2020: SPOOKY BUT SAFE

Due+to+the+unfortunate+circumstances+of+COVID-19%2C+this+year%27s+Halloween+celebrations+are+going+to+take+a+toll.+Safety+precautions+need+to+be+set+in+place+and+you+may+not+be+able+to+do+all+the+same+activities+as+in+past+years.+Adjusting+can+be+weird+but+it+is+very+crucial.+

Gwyneth Katker

Due to the unfortunate circumstances of COVID-19, this year’s Halloween celebrations are going to take a toll. Safety precautions need to be set in place and you may not be able to do all the same activities as in past years. Adjusting can be weird but it is very crucial.

Manya Garg, Reporter

Halloween, a holiday of thrill and terror, is inevitably the best holiday celebrated throughout the nation. While children look forward to gathering their candy stash, teenagers dress up for costume parties and visit haunted houses. However, with the COVID 19 pandemic, essential precautions must be taken to stay healthy. 

 

Masks are a crucial necessity nowadays, and Halloween cannot be celebrated without one. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains that Halloween costumes aren’t substitutes for face masks, and the cloth mask must comprise two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers your mouth and nose. Though they may seem to spoil a costume, many have found fun ways to incorporate masks in their costumes by making the ordinary cloth stunning and eerie. From gothic black lace accented masks to glow in the dark masks, there are various mask options provided by online stores like Etsy.  

 

Moreover, the tradition of trick-or-treating will not halt on Halloween. Strategies to make trick-or-treating safer include giving treats outdoors, setting individually bagged treats, disinfecting hands and location, avoiding direct contact with trick-or-treaters, and wearing a mask. Trick or treaters should bring hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol and use it periodically, and wash hands after returning home. 

 

IB sophomore Jiya Bhatt shares her plans, “I’ve never really done much for Halloween, but this year I still expect a lot of trick-or-treaters and plan to put a bowl of dum-dum lollipops outside my door to maintain “the lollipop house” reputation. To limit contact, I don’t plan to individually hand out candy like I do every year. Rather, I will just wave to people through the window (and keep an eye on “candy hoggers”)”

 

Businesses have also found alternatives to Haunted Houses this year. For the first time, people are trying haunted drive-throughs. The Haunted Road, Scream n’ Stream, are some Halloween drive-through events occurring in Central Florida for a theatrical experience. For road safety, numerous traffic signals will control the flow of cars travelling at a maximum of three miles per hour. The event is similar to Halloween Horror Nights as it brings many of the Halloween traditions but safely in order to enjoy Halloween in a socially distant way. Other traditional events such as Howl-o-Scream are getting modified to feature open-air scare zones, limited-capacity admission with reservations required, and physical distancing.

 

Instead of costume parties, friends and family can hold an outdoor costume parade or contest to show off costumes. Outdoor Halloween movie night with friends or neighbors or an indoor movie night with your household members are also popular ways to celebrate Halloween. Additionally, families can hide Halloween treats in and around your house to hold a Halloween treat hunt with household members.

 

Health Academy sophomore Aliana Guerre plans to, “I will be attending a close-knit family friends get-together. We will watch horror movies and constantly try to scare each other with giant mechanical spiders. Everyone will come dressed up, and we will enjoy the spirit of the holiday by eating scary themed food and listening to creepy music. The possibilities of fun are endless and I am so excited! The precautions we will be taking to ensure the safety of everyone will be maintaining social distance, wearing masked themed costumes, and constantly washing our hands. There will only be 6 people in attendance. Plus both my mom and our family friend are health care workers, so safety and cleanliness are always a top priority. In addition, everyone will be tested.”

 

Halloween is a joyous holiday that even the virus cannot stop us from celebrating.Watching children obsess over candy and driving through the “haunted houses” will sure be a treat, and will contrast the gloomy atmosphere that pandemic spread. However, make sure to read CDC guidelines for Halloween to make appropriate decisions to stay safe and enjoy at the same time!