How to Have a Happy Halloween During COVID-19
By Veronique Saiya OCTOBER 2020
It’s 2020, the year better known for COVID-19 than just about anything else. It’s the year where virtually everything has been turned inside out and upside down. And let us face facts, Halloween in 2020 will not create an exception to the social distancing status quo. Look, if it were still 2019, local children would start running from house to house by 5:00 p.m., collecting as much candy as possible. But it’s not, and most homes will certainly NOT be welcoming strangers to their doorsteps—no matter what type of mask the little monsters, Marvel, and Star Wars costume wearers put over their heads.
A Harris Poll survey about how COVID-19 is affecting fall plans revealed that only 27% of respondents said they plan to take their kids trick or treating this year. Still according to the Poll’s research, a whopping 90% of millennial moms and young parents say they can’t imagine Halloween without indulging in candy and that trick-or-treating is irreplaceable. And according to an independent survey from Insight to Action, 70% of moms plan to celebrate the Halloween season with their children in some sort of way this year.
Regardless of public opinion and what a parent might like to do, local officials from county to county could certainly decide to cancel Halloween in your area in an effort to avoid dangerous gatherings of crowds that would spread the coronavirus.
In an effort to cover all the proverbial bases and in an attempt to salvage some normalcy, here are some ideas for a Halloween alternative:
Have a ‘Spooktacular’ Early Evening Meal
You can find loads of ideas for transforming food into fun, Halloween themed treats all over the internet, and even the ones aimed at adults containing alcohol content can easily be revamped with a virgin version for the kids. The following are some good recipes I found when researching online, and there’s loads more to discover:
Follow your spooktacular evening meal with getting dressed in costume—that way you don’t ruin the costume or makeup. Take loads of great pics, post them, and let the kids get involved in sending them to family and friends. Hold on to at least one stellar picture to utilize later on in a montage of photographs capturing the memories of the year. The card is a great way to keep family and friends in touch with what everyone in your household’s been up to during 2020. I like to mail these montage cards out in December before the beginning of the new year.
Now it’s time for the sweet stuff. All kids love finding things, especially candy which is why Easter Egg hunting is such a hit with children. Why not hide your own “sanitary” candy all over the house and in the yard. Then the grand candy finale (which makes the whole thing even better since it’s out of the ordinary) is having your blindfolded child(ren) whack away at a pumpkin piñata filled with treats. Not only is it loads of fun, it adds a dash of COVID-19 catharsis and lets the kids get their frustrations out. It’s shockingly easy to make your own. All you’ll even need are a newspaper, black construction paper, glue, scissors, punching balloon, streamers, flour, water, and some candy. Get step-by-step directions replete with video footage at housebeautiful.com/home-remodeling/diy-projects/a23550517/diy-pumpkin-pinata-video-tutorial/. If you’re too overwhelmed to follow the easy tutorial snag a Halloween-themed one for sale for as little as $12 or as much as $35. Here are a few places you can find them online:
A Sweet Ending
When they’re finished with the candy extravaganza and it’s time to go back inside, banish the doldrums and let them walk in the door to find a special gift wrapped in some festive Halloween or fall themed paper. Let them have some time to enjoy and play with their gift.
It’s finally time to wind up the evening and the good news is that Halloween falls on a Saturday this year, so no school and no work the next day. Let’s face facts: candy and sleep don’t mix, and kids are definitely going to be wired for a bit. So while they’re coming down from their sugar high why not stay up and watch a fun movie with them. If you want to stick with the spooky theme for your flick Good Housekeeping offers a list of “25 Scary Movies for Kids That Aren’t Too Traumatizing.” The list consists of movies they deemed spooky, but not so scary as to scar your kids for life. They give you a synopsis and low down on each movie. You can find the list at https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/life/entertainment/g28038087/best-scary-movies-for-kids/.
With these suggestions your family might be surprised to find they have transformed an expectedly abysmal Halloween into the best and most memorable Halloween they’ve ever had! #