As the October month continues, making the leaves grow redder, and the wind grow colder, the thought on nearly everyone’s mind is Halloween. Or, more specifically, if it’s still on. The Coronavirus has rocked the world ever since the first recorded cases in Wuhan, China. But will it go as far as to cancel yet another popular holiday?
A New York Times article states that as of October 10th, there have been 48,155 total cases in Idaho, 1,586 of those being in our own Madison County. It also reports an increase in cases in Idaho by 74% from just the last two weeks Madison county, more recently, is one of the biggest hot spots in the entire state of Idaho. BYU-I has taken some precautions, sending out emails reminding and urging students to follow guidelines regarding COVID-19, such as maintaining social distancing, following the county mask mandate, and refraining from parties with numerous people. They have really cracked down on these guidelines, making it very clear that in order to keep school in-person, they must follow them. Madison School District has made attempts to do the same.
I could continue reading statistics, maybe scare you into not trick-or-treating at all, but that’s not the point I’m trying to get across. Even with the increase in cases, it is obvious that not everyone will be quarantining in their homes on Halloween, especially the younger children who enjoy going door to door getting candy and dressing up. So the logical thing to do would be to educate you on how to best celebrate this holiday safely while still maintaining the Halloween spirit. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has released a statement regarding the concern, warning people how the pandemic can affect trick or treaters, and including safe but fun alternatives. Some of these alternatives include carving pumpkins, decorating your living space with halloween decor, virtual Halloween costume contests, or hosting a Halloween movie night with the people you live with. The CDC has also made it clear that a costume mask is NOT a substitute for a surgical mask. Additionally, for those in charge of handing out the candy, the CDC suggests the safest way to pass it out is to have individually wrapped candies lined out, instead of in a bowl, a bit farther from your house. Perhaps at the end of a driveway or edge of a yard would be safer. According to an article by Good Housekeeping, “New safety guidelines from the CDC discourage Americans from taking part in traditional trick or treating, as it may be one of the riskiest traditions during the novel coronavirus pandemic.” This is mainly due to being around strangers, and other people you don’t live with for long periods of time. Even with these words of caution and rising cases, 80% of people surveyed by Good Housekeeping, said that they still plan to take part in the trick or treating tradition that Halloween is best known for.
However you decide to celebrate this holiday, make sure to be weary of your safety and the safety of those around you, all while still having fun!
For more information from the CDC, here’s their official statement about how to best celebrate the holiday while maintaining your health and safety: