HEALTHY IN UTAH

How To Celebrate Halloween Safely This Year

Oct 16, 2020, 7:53 AM

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Halloween is just two weeks away, and many household conversations are likely centered around not just what costumes to wear or what candy to buy, but also what the holiday will look like during the pandemic.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a few suggestions about fall and winter activities this year.

“Outdoor activities are safer than indoor activities,” according to the CDC. “If participating in an outdoor event is not possible, avoid crowded, poorly ventilated, and fully enclosed indoor spaces.”

The website Halloween2020.org offers information about Oct. 31 this year, including health information that’s been complied by the Harvard Global Health Institute.

The website has a map that shows the COVID-19 risk levels for every county in the United States. In Utah, the only county that’s listed as low-risk, according to the site, is Daggett County.

Duchesne, Uintah, Emery and Rich counties are among those in the yellow zone, but Salt Lake, Utah and Davis counties are in the red.

The site recommends saving trick-or-treating for another year and focus instead on activities at home with limited guests.

The website also features a list of suggestions for Halloween revelers based on their area’s risk level.

Green Zone

For those counties that are at the lowest risk of COVID-19 transmission, the Harvard Global Health Institute says trick-or-treating is OK, along with trunk-r-treating, and neighborhood costume parties – just remember to stay social distanced whenever possible and make sure to wash your hands often.

And, of course, make sure to wear a mask or cloth face covering. If your costume already has a mask, make sure you’re wearing a cloth covering underneath since costume masks aren’t designed to keep droplets from escaping your mouth.

Yellow Zone

Many counties are in the U.S. are on the map’s yellow zone. For those of you in these counties, the site says trick-or-treating is still a go – just make sure to focus on only visiting neighbors that have safety measures in place. The HGHI also suggests residents “yeet the treats.” Or in other words, it’s a good idea to toss the candy rather than have everyone’s hands going into a bucket full of treats.

Other suggestions include drive-up trick-or-treating, a neighborhood parade, or take to the streets for a special socially-distanced pet costume parade.

Orange Zone

Ever heard of trick-or-treat in reverse? That’s the first suggestion for those in higher-risk counties.

“Get the kids all decked out in their costume of choice and hang out with them in the front yard as neighbors walk or drive by and deliver candy,” according to the website.

The HGHI also suggests creating a neighborhood candy hunt or having a trick or treat drive by and take treats to friends and family while in costume. Just “honk, text or shout” when you arrive.

Red Zone

Just because you might be in a high-risk county doesn’t mean you can’t have Halloween fun.

Halloween2020.org suggests having a limited invite party with just a few of your closest friends and family – and make sure to adhere to the preventative best practices like washing your hands often and wearing face coverings.

Don’t forget that you can still have a great time with just the people in your household, including with a night of Halloween karaoke, a Netflix party, a scavenger hunt, or even a Halloween piñata.

Also suggested: Get out on the porch and take some epic porch pics of your family’s costumes.

Go to halloween2020.org for more ideas.

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How To Celebrate Halloween Safely This Year