While many of us were holding onto hope that Halloween would move forward as normal, as numbers begin to rise again in Ontario, it seems that we may have to make alternative plans for the spooky holiday.
The CDC recently announced that, to minimize the danger of spreading the coronavirus, many of our normal Halloween activities will have to be sidelined this year—most importantly trick-or-treating.
This is going to be a big blow for a lot of kids and a lot of parents. But, just because going door-to-door through your neighbourhood is not being recommended this year, it doesn’t mean there aren’t a lot of fun alternatives for you and your family to enjoy.
Note: If you and your family are comfortable with trick-or-treating, we recommend ensuring kids are wearing proper masks, that you wash and sanitize your hands between houses, and that you check in with your municipality beforehand. Woodstock, NB is the first and only Canadian city that has officially cancelled trick-or-treating this year, and other provinces and municipalities have already said that they will take a “wait-and-see” approach as the holiday draws closer.
This year Halloween falls on a Saturday, meaning you have the whole day to enjoy the spooky fun of the holiday. Let’s take a look at some of the fun alternatives you can plan so that your kids can still have an amazing Halloween experience this year, pandemic or not.
Low-risk Halloween activities
You can be sure that you and your family will have a spooky time and stay safe with these low-risk activities.
Dress up in your Halloween costume—or costumes!
First things first, Halloween is all about the costumes and there is no reason to miss out on dressing up this year. Let your kid pick out their favourite costume and wear it all day long! Can’t decide if they want to be a witch or a firefighter? Since you’ll be home all day, why not let them be both?!
Arrange an at-home candy scavenger hunt
Let’s be honest, one of the best parts of Halloween is all the free candy. Set up a scavenger hunt in your home and around your yard with their favourite Halloween-sized treats. You can make it interesting with some clues to get them from each hiding spot or hide the candy well and make it your typical Easter egg-style hunt.
Mail treat packages to your friends and family
Get a group of friends and family with kids together and mail out treat packages ahead of time. This is a great way for kids to trick-or-treat in a different but still fun way. You can add in more than just candy—think stickers, pins, monster toys, and more. We love the boxes from The Penny Paper Co that you can customize and have delivered right to your friend’s doors. And if you don’t have a group of kids that can participate, think about sending a package right to your home addressed to your kids.
How could we talk about Halloween and not talk about carving pumpkins? While this is usually a pre-Halloween activity, this year carve your pumpkins on Halloween day, roast the seeds, and put the pumpkins out for any passersby to enjoy.
Make some spooky holiday snacks
From mini-donut spiders and monster brownies to witchy popcorn balls and mummy dogs, there are tons of fun, delicious Halloween treats that you can make with your kids and enjoy all day. Check out our 13 favourite spectacularly spooky Halloween treats.
Have a Halloween movie marathon
There are so many amazing Halloween movies out there. Whether your kids are into the spookier side of the holiday or just want to enjoy a very Charlie Brown Halloween, plan out a fun movie marathon for you and the kids to enjoy.
Decorate your house—inside and out
Bust out the decorations, it’s time to get into the Halloween spirit. It’s a great chance to get some crafts going, too—build your own scarecrow, create tombstones out of cardboard, and go crazy with the spider webs.
Moderate-risk Halloween activities
Depending on your neighbourhood, you may be able to participate in some of these moderate-risk activities with safety precautions in place.
Get the families in your neighbourhood together and plan out a one-way trick-or-treating event. Wrap up small bags of candies and line them up at the end of a driveway or the edge of the yard. Kids can grab a bag as they walk by all while keeping up with physical distancing. Be sure to keep kids spaced out as they go and to sanitize their hands between houses.
Visit a pumpkin patch
Wearing a mask and ensuring your hands are sanitized before and after touching anything, you can safely visit a pumpkin patch. Let the kids pick out their pumpkins and you can carve them later that day.
Host a small, outdoor costume party
As long as all guests are wearing proper masks, and you stay within the recommended 25 people in a single outdoor gathering, you can host a small outdoor costume party with your bubble. Remember, if people are coming from outside your bubble, they should all maintain 6 feet distance from each other.