WHITEHALL – Halloween is right around the corner, and COVID-19 has everyone wondering whether or not trick-or-treating will even be an option this year.
Parents also have concerns about how to keep their children safe and healthy while celebrating the holiday. Kids typically flood the streets in their costumes in search of candy on Oct. 31, and this part of the holiday will remain the same.
“As it is not an official holiday or city event, we plan to let the trick-or-treating happen as normal, from 6 to 8,” says Scott Huebler, Whitehall City Manager.
The State of Michigan has released Halloween guidelines to offer tips to help families navigate the holiday safely. Some of the suggestions for homeowners participating in trick-or-treat festivities are; wear a mask that covers both your nose and mouth, do not hand out candy if you are sick, position a distribution table between you and trick or treaters, wash hands often, consider handing out candy in an open space where distancing is possible, and even look into organizing a neighborhood costume parade to allow an organized way to keep space between children.
As for recommendations for parents taking their children out for the trick-or-treating festivities; talk to your children about safe social distancing, avoid congregating in groups, guide your children through a one-way trick-or-treat system, wear a protective mask covering mouth and nose, inspect candy, wash hands or hand sanitizer often, and only go to the houses who are following safety measures.
There are still churches holding trick-or-treating events, and will be doing so in a safe way this year. White Lake United Methodist Church will have a station set-up outside at the Whitehall building on Division to distribute candy, as well as several stations in the parking of the Montague location on Cook Street.
These stations will be open during the normal trick-or-treat hours from 6 to 8 p.m. “We are taking steps for it to be a safe and social distanced environment. The way we are gong to set-up and hand out candy will be in a way to protect the people,” says Pastor Mike of White Lake United Methodist Church.
Another church still holding Halloween festivities is The Evangelical Covenant Church of Whitehall. Normally ECC held their trick-or-treat event inside, but this year they are having a traditional “trunk-or-treat” outside, rain or shine.
Aside from moving festivities outside, they are also changing the time of their event to run from 4 to 6 p.m. There will be tables set up a distance away from the trunk of the candy distributors, and candy will pre-bagged to allow kids to easily grab their own bag of goodies.
For more tips on how to make Halloween as safe as possible please visit michigan.gov.