From Our Blog: 6 Ways to Celebrate Halloween During the Pandemic

preschool boy celebrating halloween during the pandemic
Back in March, I thought we might be pandemic-free by fall. But here we are near Halloween, and we’re all still wearing masks and keeping our distance — so the holiday usually full of costumes, treats, and fun times with family, friends, and neighbors is sure to look pretty different this year. Wondering how to make the most of it while keeping your child and your family healthy and safe? Here are six things you can do.

Make treats at home

Fall fruits and veggies are back. Whether you’ve gone apple picking and you don’t know what to do with the bag-full that’s sitting on your counter or your garden has started to produce squash or pumpkins, the options are endless (and delicious):
  • Caramel apples
  • Apple cider
  • Applesauce
  • Dried apple chips
  • Squash casserole
  • Pasta with butternut squash sauce
  • Butternut squash soup
  • Pumpkin bread or muffins
  • Pumpkin pie
  • Oatmeal with apples or pumpkin (or both)
  • And the list goes on!

Have a Halloween party via video

A common theme for 2020: when you can’t gather in person, turn to video chats. Talk to your child’s friends’ parents, find a time that works for everyone, and set up the party’s events. If you’re planning a costume contest, make sure everyone knows to dress up. See if a parent or two in the group will read a fall or Halloween-themed story. And, if everyone’s comfortable with it, have one family whip up a special treat prior to the party and drop it off in each child’s mailbox to enjoy together on screen.

Visit the pumpkin patch

Halloween is on a Saturday, which leaves the whole day open for fun activities. Don your face coverings, pick your pumpkins, and carve them that same day. It might seem last minute, but it’s best to wait to carve as close to Halloween as possible, especially if you live in a warmer climate. You can even roast the pumpkin seeds once you’re done.

Get creative with candy distribution

If your town hasn’t cancelled trick-or-treating, forego the communal bowl of candy and put together individual bags. Instead of sitting on your doorstep to distribute them, space them out on your front lawn or front steps for easy grab-and-go. Or, if you’re feeling extra creative, make a candy chute or slide of some sort, wear gloves, and send treats outside from the comfort of your home. And if you decide to take your kids trick-or-treating, set expectations ahead of time regarding disinfecting so your kids won’t be disappointed if they can’t dig in right away.

Have a neighborhood parade

Again, with Halloween taking place on the weekend, you’ve got all day to celebrate. If your neighbors and their kids typically get into the holiday spirit, organize a daytime parade so everyone can see each other’s costumes. Of course, make sure to follow social distancing guidelines in between households and wear face coverings.

Stay home

We know — you’ve been cooped up at home for far too long. But you don’t need to go anywhere to have fun! If the weather isn’t great for outdoor activities, or you’d just like to cozy up, queue up a Halloween movie marathon. Put a seasonal spin on movie night treats, such as caramel popcorn, orange and black colored foods, or pumpkin-shaped pizza.

As COVID-19 continues to change how we do things, don’t let it ruin your Halloween plans. Celebrate with those in your “bubble,” use some of the above mentioned ideas, and give your child something extra to enjoy. The way you choose to celebrate this year might even prompt a new tradition for the future!

Bright Horizons
About the Author
Bright Horizons
Bright Horizons
In 1986, our founders saw that child care was an enormous obstacle for working parents. On-site centers became one way we responded to help employees – and organizations -- work better. Today we offer child care, elder care, and help for education and careers -- tools used by more than 1,000 of the world’s top employers and that power many of the world's best brands
preschool boy celebrating halloween during the pandemic