If you’re anything like me, you’re really looking forward to celebrating Halloween. Restrictions have eased off a bit in the past couple of months but unfortunately, the pandemic is not likely to go away in time for fall festivities. We know that you want to have fun, but it’s best to stay safe during these times. On that note, here are some activities you can do to enjoy a safe Halloween!
Create Halloween-themed Treats
Chances are you have some extra time because you’re working remotely, so why not spend that time in the kitchen with the kids? It’s a great way to keep them busy and teach them a new skill or two! You can simply assemble spooky treats or bake some goodies. The key here is to be creative!
One great recipe to whip out is Chocolate Monster Cookies. You probably know how to make cookies, and all the ingredients are in your pantry, so all you need to do is to add decorations to fit the theme. You’ll just need ganache, marshmallow fangs, and candy eyeballs. There’s a recipe for candy eyeballs linked above but if you think that’s still too much work, you can even order premade ones online! This dessert won’t even make you sweat.
If you want an even simpler recipe, go for the Black Cat, Bat, Spider, and Mice Doughnuts. There’s not much to do, really. You only need to make a chocolate sauce to dip your doughnuts in. You can decorate the rest of it by using store-bought candy corn, candy eyeballs, licorice, yellow and orange M&M’s, chocolate wafer cookies, and Pocky sticks. This doubles as a crafts activity that’s perfect for the kids!
Is Halloween really complete without deviled eggs? You can even design them as “pumpkins” for a bit of extra detail. All you need for this are usual ingredients like egg, mayo, mustard, and a few other spices. Just add a sprig of chives and a dash of paprika for that pumpkin look.
Have a Spooky Movie Night
Now that your snacks are all prepped, why not go for a spooky movie night? Halloween playlists from your favorite streaming sites are now up to help you decide what to watch. You can ask your kids ahead of time so they know what to look forward to. To make things even more fun, you can dress as the characters in your chosen film to set the mood.
If you happen to have a backyard, that would be a great spot to watch a film! Just set up blankets and pillows together with a projector screen for an instant open-air cinema. You can even add backyard decorations if you want to go all out. It’s a perfect little activity to spend quality time with your family.
Attend a Virtual Costume Party
At this point, your kids are probably experts in doing everything online. It’s not the greatest thing, but attending a virtual costume party is a good option this year. You can organize a program along with other parents to make sure your kids don’t feel alone! Just don’t forget to decorate so they don’t feel like they’re attending another online class.
A great option is to have a spooky quiz night. You can let them guess if a pumpkin is a fruit or a vegetable, or if vampires ever sleep! You can also ask about their favorite horror or cartoon films. They can also roleplay their favorite Halloween characters. The kids can even watch a Halloween movie via Zoom or Netflix Party so they can bond with their friends.
Another great idea is to help them build their costumes. Even the simplest thing like pasting a cartoon logo on their shirt or painting some details on their clothes could bring out the creativity in them. It’s a great way to get them involved in the design process.
Have a Scavenger Hunt
If your kids really want to go outside, organize a scavenger hunt around the neighborhood! Coordinate with your neighbors to see how many are interested and how you can carry out the event. To maintain the children’s safety, put together teams from the same household as much as possible. Also, discourage the kids from crossing paths with one another. It would be best to set up walking guides so they have trails to follow.
For the hunt, make sure to map out the treasures in safe proximity away from each other to promote physical distancing. Also, add enough treasures to hunt so that kids don’t crowd at certain places. Encourage your neighbors to highlight the treasures by setting up beautiful decorations! It’s a great way to help your kids to feel the Halloween vibe.
Go (Modified) Trick-or-Treating
You might think your Halloween won’t be complete without the usual trick-or-treat, but you might want to skip it this year. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists traditional trick-or-treating, along with indoor haunted houses and crowded costume parties, as high-risk activities. However, they do have recommendations on how to do it safely.
The best option is to do a scavenger hunt-style trick-or-treat within your home. You can hide candies around your house and leave out clues for your kids to find. That way, your kids can still enjoy treats and stay perfectly safe.
Another option is to have a one-way trick-or-treat around the neighborhood. Families can set up individually wrapped goodie bags at the end of their driveways for kids to pick up. It is important to note that a distance of six feet must be maintained and frequent handwashing or sanitizing must be done. Those who would prepare the bags are also advised to wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before packing the goods. Do not forget to ensure that the kids are wearing gloves and face coverings when going outside.
For a complete list of low to high-risk activities classified by the CDC, click here.
Visit Local Activities
The Gateway offers free movie screenings for all Saturdays of October. Reservations are required and a ticket can accommodate up to six people. Upcoming films include The Nightmare Before Christmas on October 10, Labyrinth on October 17, and Beetlejuice on October 24. For more information and ticket reservations, click here.
You can visit the Drive-Thru Halloween Carnival in Provo Recreation Center. Expect to be inside the car the entire time so you don’t have to worry about unwanted contact with others. The drive will take about 40 minutes total and all kids below 18 will receive three goodie bags. For more details about this attraction, visit this page.
Even though Halloween is going to be a lot different this year, it just can’t be canceled altogether. It is, after all, one of the most highly anticipated holidays of the year. The pandemic has had a significant impact on the economy and not celebrating Halloween this year could harm it even more. We don’t want that to happen.
Besides that, your kids deserve a day to have fun and feel like kids again! Quite frankly, you deserve a good time as well. Things have been pretty hard and it won’t hurt to reward your family with a celebration that’s full of joy (and a bit of terror).
So go ahead and start making your Halloween plans! Everything this year has been reliant on creativity, so do what you gotta do to make this Halloween one to remember. Just make sure to always follow safety protocols to avoid making this holiday a disaster no matter which activity you choose.