What Are Some Safe Ways to Celebrate Halloween This Year?


Masks while trick-or-treating!

Inez Goering, Staff Writer

Want to participate in Covid-friendly activities this Halloween? The virus is holding back all age groups from our annual festivities, and I’m sure many of you are having a hard time figuring out safe ways to spend your Halloween.

Halloween is a fun holiday for all ages. Little kids go trick-or-treating, teens like to watch scary movies and go to parties, and parents get to hand out candy as kids walk from door to door. But there is just one dilemma this year (a pretty big one, too): the Coronavirus. All of these typical Halloween activities aren’t very safe in regard to the pandemic, considering they involve a great deal of person-to-person contact. This holiday, a personal favorite of mine, is observed all over the country, and even though not every town may be careful about it, we can make sure our community is celebrating in an enjoyable yet safe manner.

Amira Hughes, a nine-year-old at Clark Elementary, said she will be attending a “covid-friendly fear fest” that abides by the rules of social distancing. She said there will be about 15 attendants, everyone wearing masks, and they will be trick-or-treating in her neighborhood and the surrounding neighborhoods.

I believe trick-or-treating doesn’t need to be canceled this year, so long as people understand how to keep themselves and others safe. Kids should trick-or-treat in small groups or with their families, not in big crowds of friends as usual. Masks are a must, especially when walking up to someone’s house, and it could be fun for kids to figure out ways to incorporate masks into their costumes. Because little kids have a hard time abiding by the rules and understanding the significance of wearing masks and social distancing, it is suggested that parents facilitate this activity to enforce those rules.

Another way to limit contact is for adults to leave a bowl of candy on the front porch for children to pick from. I understand that adults enjoy watching kids walk around in their cute little costumes and greeting them as they take the candy. So it is possible for them to sit on the opposite side of the porch from the bowl, so they can still see the variety of the kids’ costumes and the happy grins on their faces.

For the age group in the middle, the teens who don’t go trick-or-treating, the usual go-to halloween activity is going to a party. This year, students at the University of Virginia must find ways to celebrate that follow the University’s Covid guidelines. These guidelines include wearing masks at all times outside of dorms, no gatherings of over ten people, and no going into others’ dorms. 

I interviewed two first years at UVA, and they said there are no parties going on for Halloween. One student said he has some ideas about how to safely enjoy Halloween. His idea of safe festivities are “decorating the dorms and trick-or-treating within the suites,” which, to me, sounds like a great alternative to throwing or attending a party.

Halloween is a kid-favorite annual event that won’t be celebrated in a traditional manner this year. The actions everyone chooses to take on this day can have an effect on the surrounding people, and everyone should want to be careful for their own safety as well. So for our community’s sake, I ask this of you: PLEASE do not throw a party, and please be extra careful with the activities you choose to partake in. It doesn’t only affect you.