COVID-19 alters Halloween festivities for students

Students and families are taking careful precautions to avoid getting sick while still being able to participate in Halloween this year. New guidelines present new challenges for trick-or-treaters.


Making a mask-o-lantern…After carving it, seventh grader Amy Brown places a mask on a pumpkin. Brown aims to remind trick-or-treaters to wear a mask and stay safe. Arrowhead photo by Melissa Brown

In the wake of COVID-19, many students and families in the community have taken multiple defenses this year when it came to their Halloween festivities, such as parties or trick-or-treating.
Many students go out on Halloween night to participate in activities related to the holiday. Due to the pandemic, however, these usual activities have been avoided or modified. Students and parents spent time trying to find ways to stay safe, while still having normal fall festivities.
Mother of three Amy McDonough has altered her plans for this year, due to the current pandemic.
“We’re skipping trick-or-treating this year,” McDonough said.
Instead of going out with the risks of the coronavirus, McDonough is spending the fall holiday with her family. McDonough had a party with her parents and her childrens’ cousins to minimize the risk of any of them contracting COVID-19. “Friday night we’re taking our kids to my in-laws with their cousins on that side, just to hang out at home and have a little party so they can show off their costumes.”
McDonough said that her entire family had been taking precautions with each other, and that their parties would remain outdoors to stay safe.
“At this point we’re just hanging out because we know that all of those family members have taken precautions, so we’re comfortable being around them,” McDonough said.
Seventh grader Izzy McDonough is one of McDonough’s three children.
Izzy said that her normal plans have been changed because of the coronavirus.
Due to the precautions that will be taken, Izzy believes that she missed out on getting to see the costumes others are wearing, and getting to “show them off at school.” Sophomore Amanda Hill typically goes trick-or-treating with her neighbors and family, or sometimes with a group of friends. Hill is choosing to participate in the holiday the same way she normally would, while adding in a few extra precautions.
“I still plan on going trick-or-treating with my family or friends, or going to a party,” Hill said. “Now I plan on wearing a mask whether or not my costume has one.”
Hill was also planning on bringing hand sanitizer and gloves, so that she would not be exposed to the virus by touching candy.
“I want everyone to listen to the guidelines set out and to be very cautious,” Hill said. “These precautions are for their safety and others.”
Hill said that keeping COVID -19 contained is very important.
“Limiting the spread of the virus is extremely important so these rules should be followed.” Hill said.
The CDC has suggested precautions for people who are still planning on their typical Halloween activities.
Halloween-centered suggestions include making individually-wrapped candy bags for trick-or-treaters or turning the mask into an accessory for the costume.The CDC also says to not wear a costume mask over a cloth mask, as to not restrict breathing.
The full list of CDC Halloween guidelines can be found at their website,