TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Halloween is just days away, but like most things, it will be different this year.
From canceled traditions to new ways to hand out treats, the holiday won't be the same.
Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare has a few tips to keep everyone safe amid the ongoing pandemic.
One of their biggest concerns this weekend is Halloween events at bars and in haunted houses. With no regulation on capacity, crowds are expected to form.
"Even in Leon County where right now our numbers are not terrible, we're at about 5percent positivity over the last week," said Dr. Paul Robinson, TMH Pediatric Medicine Faculty. "But I still worry about people crowding into big Halloween parties or haunted houses inside. I'd rather see it done outside and distanced."
TMH says it's important to keep doing what you have been doing: avoiding large gatherings, keeping six feet from others, wearing cloth face coverings, and washing your hands often.
Create Halloween Magic at home to avoid any potential exposure to COVID-19 this Halloween; TMH suggests staying home and making some new traditions, like virtual costume parties, watching spooky movies, pumpkin decorating, or craft projects, or candy hunts.
TMH advises avoiding indoor events like haunted houses, saying a local corn maze may be a better option if social distancing and one-way walkthrough are enforced and face coverings are worn. If you go to a pumpkin patch, use hand sanitizer before and after touching what you pick.
If it is possible for everyone to stay at least six feet apart and wear cloth face coverings, team up with your neighbors to do a small, socially distanced neighborhood costume parade. Remember, a costume mask is not a substitute for a cloth face covering.
Trick-or-Treating in Your Neighborhood
TMH also says families should err on the side of caution when it comes to trick-or-treating and stay home instead. If you’ve decided to keep the tradition, anyway, make sure to do so safely.
Avoid large groups or clustering at doorsteps or in driveways, and make sure all parties are wearing protective face coverings. Consider sitting outside to hand out treats and lining up individually packaged treat bags for trick-or-treaters to take.
If your child collects treats from a few, socially-distanced neighbors, wipe the packages or let them sit for a few days before giving them to your child, as it’s unclear how touching objects spreads the COVID-19 virus. And, of course, use hand sanitizer and/or wash hands before and after trick-or-treating and handing out treats.