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5 trick or treat ideas for a safer Halloween
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Instead of passing candy to trick-or-treaters this Halloween, make your own socially distanced candy chute out of posters and tape. - photo by Kelsey Podo

Halloween may look different this year, but that doesn’t mean children can’t eat massive amounts of candy and celebrate the spooky season. 

Despite the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations to refrain from traditional trick-or-treating during the pandemic, neighborhoods and families are still gearing up for the holiday. 

For those who want to welcome trick-or-treaters to their doorsteps, The Times has compiled a list of five safer alternatives for celebrating Halloween with candy. 

The candy chute 

Instead of handing candy to children this Saturday, opt instead for a socially distanced candy chute. If you have steps leading up to your house, then you’re already equipped for the easy-to-make contraption.  

Here's what you’ll need: 

  • A roll of painter’s tape  

  • Two pieces of large poster paper 

Cut four strips of poster board, 28 inches in length and 10 inches wide. Roll each into long cylinders and tape the edges to hold the shape. Make sure that the largest piece of candy you plan to offer can easily fit through the tube. Tape your four cylinders together to form one long cohesive tube.  

Attach your candy chute to the railing leading to your front steps with tape. You can also anchor it to the steps with tape or simply hold the tube. When trick-or-treaters stop by your house, simply drop the candy through the chute.  

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Hall County residents are planning several alternatives to passing out candy this Halloween, including placing individually-wrapped bags of treats outside their homes. - photo by Kelsey Podo

Goodie bags 

Don’t want to increase the risk of transmitting COVID-19 to trick-or-treaters? Fill a bucket or large container with individually wrapped goodie bags for children. This way they won’t feel inclined to submerge their hands in the candy and contaminate the precious treats.  

Sure, you can’t ensure children will only grab one bag, but putting up a polite sign reading, “Please take one,” can't hurt.  

Halloween scavenger hunt 

Kids can still walk around neighborhoods dressed in costumes without having to knock on people’s doors. Create a Halloween scavenger hunt by listing spooky decorations to spot like a pumpkin, ghost, spider, black cat, witch, zombie, skeleton, Halloween wreath and other festive items. For each one they find, award them with a piece of candy.  

Hide candy in your yard or house 

Just like you would for Easter, try hiding candy around your yard or home for your kids. This activity allows children to still collect treats without having to travel from door to door. Make the hunt more exciting by adding spooky decorations to your yard, which can help conceal the candy. 

Candy barrier 

Block children from entering your driveway or walking to your front door with an illuminated candy barrier. Instead of kids arriving at your doorstep, they can pull off treats hanging on the string of lights.  

Here’s what you’ll need: 

  • Two wooden or metal stakes 

  • A string of lights that measures across the width of your driveway or path to your front door 

  • Extension cord (unless you can reach an outlet with your lights) 

  • Lots of clothespins 

  • One roll of duct tape or painter’s tape 

Anchor one stake into the soil on one side of your driveway or path to your front door and place the other stake on the opposite side. Secure one end of your string of lights with tape to one stake and the other end to the second stake. Make sure the lights are taut enough, so they’re not touching the ground.  

Taking one piece of candy at a time, attach the treats with clothespins to the string of lights. Using an extension cord if necessary, plug in your lights, and now you have an illuminated candy barrier. 

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