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Published on October 12, 2020

7 ideas for a safe and fun Halloween during the COVID-19 pandemic

An image showing an online Halloween party

Fall is in the air, the days are getting shorter, and that means Halloween is right around the corner.

Yes, Halloween will look different this year, however, there are lots of safe and creative ways to have fun and celebrate at home with family and friends who are in your social circle.

Guidance from the County

With COVID-19 (coronavirus) still very real in our community, the Monterey County Health Department has issued a list of guidelines for a safe Halloween in 2020. Carnivals, festivals, and indoor haunted houses are not permitted. In addition, gatherings, events, or parties with non-household members are not permitted unless they are part of your social circle of 12 individuals or less, are conducted outdoors, and are otherwise in compliance with Social Circle Guidance.

Door-to-door trick or treating and “trunk or treating” by going car to car are also not recommended because it can be difficult to properly social distance.

Get creative, have fun, stay safe

While the Halloween activities we’re used to are on pause this year, here are seven ideas to keep the spooky fun going while staying safe from high-risk exposure to COVID-19. Dr. Martha Blum, medical director of infection prevention, Community Hospital, provides a few options for non-traditional Halloween activities in this short video.

Host a virtual costume party

Dress, up, make costumes, or put on a crazy wig and invite your child’s friends and family to a virtual costume party using one of many popular video chat apps. Make it fun and incorporate a dance party, sing-along, or parade around the house.

Decorate and carve pumpkins

Three decorative halloween pumpkins sitting on a table

One of Halloween’s best traditions is decorating and carving pumpkins. This can also be a fun outdoor and socially distanced activity for you and the people in your social bubble. Or, host a pumpkin decorating contest virtually using a video chat app.

Make fun and tasty Halloween treats

Halloween cookies on a table

Instead of candy this year, let your kids pick a few fun and Halloween-themed cookie or treat recipes to make.

Set up a candy hide-and-seek

Hide individually wrapped candy throughout the house or yard, and let the kids go find it. Or, map out a scavenger hunt with clues to where you hid the candy.

Go wild with the Halloween decorations

A living room with Halloween decorations

Decorating the house and yard isn’t just for the winter holidays. You can get creative and make your favorite Halloween creatures out of simple arts and crafts supplies.

Find or plan a drive-through event

The Monterey County Health Department recommends drive-through events where participants remain in their vehicles and drive through an area with Halloween displays or drive-in events where individuals can receive a treat bag (limited to commercially packaged, non-perishable treats) or take-away items from an organizer while the staying in their cars.

Have fun with a Halloween piñata

Get a piñata to fill with individually wrapped candy and hang it outside. Your kids can dress up in their favorite Halloween costumes and take turns hitting the piñata with a broom handle or bat until the candy falls out. Take it a step further and make a piñata out of recycled material and art supplies to decorate as a spooky Halloween creation.

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