The Department of Public Health and Social Services issued a guidance relative to the minimum requirements in celebration of Halloween.
DPHSS discourages traditional door-to-door trick-or-treating. Social gatherings of more than five individuals (i.e. Halloween and/or costume parties, haunted houses, etc.) are strictly prohibited.
The following guidelines are designed to minimize the risk of Covid-19 infection.
The DPHSS strongly encourages safe alternative activities to enjoying Halloween such as:
Decorating and carving pumpkins with only those in the same household;
Decorating your home;
Admiring Halloween decorations in your neighborhood at a distance;
Reading classic Halloween stories with those in the same household;
Baking Halloween-themed cookies;
Watching Halloween-themed movies or shows at your house;
Hiding Halloween treats in and around the house;
Participating in safe curbside trick-or-treating events sponsored by responsible businesses;
Holding drive-by costume or car-decorating contests with judges who are physically distanced; and/or
Holding a virtual Halloween costume contest so everyone can show off their costume.
In the event individuals choose to participate in traditional door-to-door trick-or-treating, DPHSS provides requirements below for all individuals involved.
Individuals experiencing flu-like symptoms or Covid-19-like symptoms are prohibited from participating in trick-or-treating.
Trick-or-treat only with members of the same household.
Face masks coverings must be worn by all individuals with the exception of children under the age of 2 or anyone who has difficulty breathing or a history of trouble breathing.
Households that have individuals under isolation or under quarantine due to Covid-19 are strictly prohibited from participating in any trick-or-treating activities.
All individuals participating in any trick-or-treating activities are advised to properly wash hands before and after each activity.
Consider household members who may be at greater risk of complications if Covid-19 is brought into the home, such as those with underlying health conditions, women who are pregnant, or older family members.
Guidance for Individuals/Households Distributing Treats
Wash hands properly before and after handling treats.
Wear a face mask at all times.
Avoid direct contact with other trick-or-treaters and maintain social distancing of 6 feet or more.
Treats should only be distributed outdoors.
Use store-bought treats that are individually plastic-wrapped.
Adults should be the individuals distributing treats while wearing a face mask and hand sanitizing between trick-or-treaters.
It is highly encouraged to practice safer, socially distant ways to conduct door-to-door trick-or-treating and distributing treats:
Set up a table/station outdoors with individually bagged treats spaced apart for trick-or-treaters to take.
Use a candy slide made of PVC pipe, or hanging treats from a wall or fence.
It is highly encouraged to use tongs, a spoon, or a tray to distribute treats. Children should not be allowed to retrieve their treats from a bowl or bag.
Covid-19 positive individuals or individuals in quarantine are strictly prohibited from distributing any treats.
Guidance for Parents/Guardians/Adults Responsible for Underage Trick-or-Treaters and for Trick-or-Treaters
Parents/Guardians should talk with their children about safety precautions and physical distancing in preparation of trick-or-treating.
If your child is at greater risk of complications from Covid-19, contact your doctor before allowing participation in Halloween activities.
Wear a face mask:
Highly encouraged to make face masks a part of Halloween costumes.
A costume mask is not a substitute for a face mask.
Do NOT wear a costume mask over a cloth mask or a cloth mask over a costume mask as it may make breathing more difficult.
Practice social distancing:
Stay at least 6 feet away from others who do not live in the same household
Individuals are more likely to get or spread Covid-19 when in close contact with others for a total of 15 minutes or more over a 24 hour period.
Wash your hands:
Bring hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol) with you and use it after touching objects or other individuals.
Parents/Guardians: supervise young children using hand sanitizers.
Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds when you get home and before you consume any treats.
Upon completion of trick-or-treating, it is highly advised to:
Leave treats out for 48 hours before consuming.
Allow children to eat only original, factory-wrapped treats. Avoid homemade treats made by strangers.
Guidance for Business Operators Distributing Treats
It is highly discouraged for businesses to distribute treats in an enclosed or indoor area or in an in-person and non-curbside manner.
Outdoor, drive-up, and curbside is highly preferable during the distribution of treats.
All other DPHSS guidance memos and minimum requirements must be followed to include, but not be limited to:
Follow all occupancy requirements and limitations currently in effect.
Do not allow any congregation of individuals.
Have hand sanitizers readily available to all customers.
Eliminate all common seating, congregate, or play areas where children and others might gather.
Follow all other DPHSS guidance memos and minimum requirements currently in effect.