by Dennis Dalman
This year, Halloween fun may come with Covid virus risks that parents should be aware of, according to the National Centers for Disease Control and the Minnesota Department of Health.
It is not advised to hold trick-or-treat events with large groups, costume parties, haunted houses, hayrides/tractor rides and other large-crowd events. All of those are considered unsafe, high-risk activities, the CDC announcement warns.
Candy should preferably be wrapped individually or in individual goodie bags, and placed on a table, driveway or porch for trick-or-treaters to pick up themselves.
It is not recommended to use bowls of treats that allow individuals to reach in and grab candy, nor is it recommended that residents give out treats by hand.
Caution should also be stressed at trunk-or-treating events, such as safe distancing (at least six feet) and masks.
“Trunk-or-treat” is the name for a Halloween activity in which organizations/families park vehicles in a lot and have candy in the vehicles’ trunks for children. It is considered a safe alternative to trick-or-treating door-to-door along dark streets.
Little ghouls and goblins can collect pre-wrapped treats while in their choice costumes, but they should be sure to maintain safe social distancing, to wear protective face masks and to keep gatherings to 10 or fewer people.
It is also recommended safety face masks should take the place of other kinds of Halloween masks – that parents or guardians should, if possible, work the safety mask to fit the style and theme of the costume.
Author: Dennis Dalman
Dalman was born and raised in South St. Cloud, graduated from St. Cloud Tech High School, then graduated from St. Cloud State University with a degree in English (emphasis on American and British literature) and mass communications (emphasis on print journalism). He studied in London, England for a year (1980-81) where he concentrated on British literature, political science, the history of Great Britain and wrote a book-length study of the British writer V.S. Naipaul. Dalman has been a reporter and weekly columnist for more than 30 years and worked for 16 of those years for the Alexandria Echo Press.