The City of Granger Beggar’s Night is Oct. 30 from 6 to 8 p.m. For residents who will be distributing goodies, please light up your front door area indicating “beggars” are welcome. Be sure the sidewalk or path to the door is clear of debris or plants that might impair their walking. Please also keep pets inside; this will protect them from being frightened or inadvertently biting a child. Do not give homemade or unwrapped treats to children.

Continued public health guidance remains in place and should be considered for all activities:

  • Wash hands before events, and upon returning home, with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Maintain a distance of 6 feet from participants outside of your household.
  • Wear a mask that covers your nose, mouth, and chin. A costume mask is not a substitute for a cloth mask. For safety purposes, a cloth mask should not be worn under an additional mask. Consider a Halloween / Día de los Muertos themed cloth mask.
  • Stay home if you are feeling sick. Residents that have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been exposed within the last 14 days should not participate in community activities.

Drivers are urged to use extra caution during this annual event. In fact, children are four times more likely to be hit by a vehicle on Halloween than any other night of the year. Be on alert for trick-or-treaters, avoid distractions, enter and exit driveways with caution.

 

COVID-19 Guidelines:

Many traditional Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading viruses. There are several safer, alternative ways to participate in Halloween. If you may have COVID-19 or you may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, you should not participate in in-person Halloween festivities and should not give out candy to trick-or-treaters.

 

Lower risk activities

These lower risk activities can be safe alternatives:

  • Carving or decorating pumpkins with members of your household and displaying them
  • Carving or decorating pumpkins outside, at a safe distance, with neighbors or friends
  • Decorating your house, apartment, or living space
  • Doing a Halloween scavenger hunt where children are given lists of Halloween-themed things to look for while they walk outdoors from house to house admiring Halloween decorations at a distance
  • Having a virtual Halloween costume contest
  • Having a Halloween movie night with people you live with
  • Having a scavenger hunt-style trick-or-treat search with your household members in or around your home rather than going house to house

Moderate risk activities

  • Participating in one-way trick-or-treating where individually wrapped goodie bags are lined up for families to grab and go while continuing to social distance (such as at the end of a driveway or at the edge of a yard)
    • If you are preparing goodie bags, wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 second before and after preparing the bags.
  • Having a small group, outdoor, open-air costume parade where people are distanced more than 6 feet apart
  • Attending a costume party held outdoors where protective masks are used and people can remain more than 6 feet apart
    • A costume mask (such as for Halloween) is not a substitute for a cloth mask. A costume mask should not be used unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers the mouth and nose and doesn’t leave gaps around the face.
    • Do not wear a costume mask over a protective cloth mask because it can be dangerous if the costume mask makes it hard to breathe. Instead, consider using a Halloween-themed cloth mask.
  • Going to an open-air, one-way, walk-through haunted forest where appropriate mask use is enforced, and people can remain more than 6 feet apart
    • If screaming will likely occur, greater distancing is advised. The greater the distance, the lower the risk of spreading a respiratory virus.
  • Visiting pumpkin patches or orchards where people use hand sanitizer before touching pumpkins or picking apples, wearing masks is encouraged or enforced, and people are able to maintain social distancing
  • Having an outdoor Halloween movie night with local family friends with people spaced at least 6 feet apart
    • If screaming will likely occur, greater distancing is advised. The greater the distance, the lower the risk of spreading a respiratory virus.
    • Lower your risk by following CDC’s recommendations on hosting gatherings or cook-outs.

 

Higher risk activities

Avoid these higher risk activities to help prevent the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19:

  • Participating in traditional trick-or-treating where treats are handed to children who go door to door
  • Having trunk-or-treat where treats are handed out from trunks of cars lined up in large parking lots
  • Attending crowded costume parties held indoors
  • Going to an indoor haunted house where people may be crowded together and screaming
  • Going on hayrides or tractor rides with people who are not in your household
  • Using alcohol or drugs, which can cloud judgement and increase risky behaviors
  • Traveling to a rural fall festival that is not in your community if you live in an area with community spread of COVID-19

 

Basic Safety Tips:

  • Plan out a route in advance and check it during the daylight for obstacles, such as broken sidewalks, construction, or other obstacles that could trip up trick-or-treaters. Stay in familiar neighborhoods or areas.
  • Designate an adult to accompany children at all times and designate a return time.
  • Remind children to stop and assure it is safe before crossing the street.
  • Encourage kids to walk, not run and to never cut across lawns or driveways.
  • Carry a flashlight or glowstick to allow your child to see and be seen.
  • Do not accept rides from anyone, including from people you know, without checking first with a parent or guardian.
  • Children should wear light colored costumes or reflective wrist bands to be easily seen in the dark.
  • Be sure children wear well-fitting, sturdy shoes and avoid too large boots, princess high-heels or other types of shoes often shown with costumes. Save these types of shoes for costume parties.
  • Avoid costumes that drag on the ground. While cute initially, costumes that drag can trip up little feet or get caught on bushes.
  • Purchased or handmade costumes should be flame retardant.
  • There is safety in numbers. A responsible adult should accompany young children. Make sure older kids trick-or-treat with friends, know the area they will be going and provide a cell phone in case of emergencies.
  • Parents should examine all items before children consume them and make sure they are all commercially made (vs. homemade or items appearing to be tampered with).
  • Make sure your child knows parents actual names (not Mom & Dad), address and phone number.
  • Make sure your child knows it’s okay to say no to an adult. It is not rude to run away from someone if they are feeling bothered or uncomfortable. Halloween is a great opportunity to talk about personal safety. Teach your children to recognize tricks predators use to lure children.

Have a safe and happy Halloween!

 

IDPH 2020 Halloween Guidance