Halloween in the time of COVID-19: Tips for a safe Halloween

Halloween is approaching and many parents are wondering how to help their kids celebrate safely this year. San Miguel County Public Health officials are encouraging you, your family, roommates or “quaranteam” to take appropriate precautions to minimize the risk of catching or spreading the virus while enjoying the holiday.

First and foremost, if you are sick, especially with COVID-19 symptoms, have been recently exposed and are quarantining, or have recently tested positive and are in the isolation period, you should not participate in any in-person activities, including handing out candy. There is always next year.

Additionally, people with pre-existing conditions or increased risk of becoming severely ill from COVID-19 should evaluate the risks of the activities they’re considering.

If you do choose to celebrate Halloween this year, you are encouraged to celebrate safely and consider the following:

  • Wear a mask that fully covers your nose and mouth, wash your hands frequently and maintain at least six feet of distance from others not in your household whenever you’re out in public. Remember that costume masks are not a substitute for masks that protect against COVID-19. Consider turning your two-layer cloth mask into a part of your costume by adding whiskers or glitter.
  • Celebrate at home. Staying at home with your household is the safest way to celebrate Halloween this year. Plan activities for the evening like a pumpkin carving contest, making homemade costume, hosting a haunted scavenger hunt or spooky game or movie night.
  • Celebrate outdoors. Remember that gatherings outdoors are always safer than indoor gatherings with others. Consider hosting a drive-by yard decorating contest with your neighbors or going to an open-air, one-way, walk-through pumpkin patch or corn maze.
  • Safely Trick-or-Treat. Avoid door-to-door trick-or-treating. Handing out candy in the traditional format will bring you and many other households into close contact. Talk with your neighbors and get creative this year in order to protect you and those you love. Individually wrap treat bags and line them up at the end of your driveway or sidewalk and watch the fun from a distance.
  • As always, have adults accompany trick-or-treaters to help your household keep masks over nose and mouth and follow recommended precautions and regular Halloween safety tips.

Whatever you chose to do this Halloween, remember your exposure threshold and the State of Colorado's amended public health order restricting public or private gatherings to no more than 10 people from 2 different households.

Large crowds, indoor events, haunted houses and group hayrides are some high-risk activities to avoid this year. Public Health advises avoiding any activities like these that could put you or others at risk of contracting COVID-19.

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