Trick or treat

Like most everything else this year, Halloween traditions will look different this year in response to the coronavirus. But keeping our community healthy doesn’t have to mean canceling all of the spooky festivities! There are a few different ways to enjoy the holiday while adhering to national and local guidelines.

1. Grab and Go Trick or Treating: Ditch the face time with neighbors which is not recommended by Fairfax health officials by implementing grab and go trick or treating. Bring hand sanitizer and use frequently, as kids might be touching their faces to apply costumes or eat candy. This idea involves a little coordination with your neighbors, but essentially it is a new take on the classic ‘please take one’ bowl of candy people put out when they leave their homes during trick or treating time.

2. Have an At-Home Scavenger Hunt: Take a page from the Easter Bunny’s book and hide candy or other Halloween treats in different places around the home. Depending on the age of your children, you can have a printed list with instructions or explain it to them as you go.

3. Virtual Costume Party: Kids love to show off their costumes, and parents work hard to buy or make them! So don’t let the restrictions stop your kid from showing off. Plan a virtual costume party with friends and family so that they can see what they’ve decided to dress up as.

4. Jammin’ Java Back to the 90’s party: Jammin Java will be hosting a Back to the 90s Concert on Halloween. Admission is free with a two purchase minimum. It will be held outside in their closed-off parking lot for maximum safety. All tables will be six feet apart from one another, and ten feet from the stage. Forecasts show sunny skies and 75-degree weather! Doors open at six and the event will start at seven. The event is a family-friendly one.

5. Drive-in Movie at the Mosaic District: Are you a family of movie lovers getting tired of the same old movie nights? With the Drive-in Movie at the Mosaic District, you can take your family to see Casper or Hocus Pocus on Halloween. Guests will be asked to stay in their vehicles unless using the bathroom. The price is $28.00  + $2.40 fee per car.

6. Have a pod party! Pods, also known as quarantine bubbles or quaranteams, are a harm reduction tool implemented to reduce the effects social isolation can have. When forming your pod, keep in mind that every family is different and has their own comfort levels, exposure levels, and risks. Understand that if one person in the pod tests positive or starts showing symptoms, all members must be tested. Kids can watch movies, go ‘trick or treating’ in different rooms of the house, paint pumpkins, or any other fun activities parents feel comfortable partaking in.

When talking to your children about how Halloween will be different this year, be upfront but keep their age in mind. Validate and create space for any difficult feelings that they might have while remaining firm that these measures are necessary to keep them and the members of their community safe. And who knows? Maybe your family will have so much fun with one or more of these ideas that it will become an annual staple!

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