By Yvonne Yorke – October 2021 – 

Every year, Halloween is celebrated as a fun-filled finale to October that delights children and adults alike. Because of the pandemic, Toronto Public Health was not able to support the traditional door-to-door trick or treating in 2020 and as of our print date for this article, Toronto Public Health has not yet provided insight for 2021. 

Is it possible for children to trick-or-treat safely during COVID? Here are some recommendations made in 2020 from other health units that may be worth considering:

Trick or Treating

Do incorporate a mask into your child’s costume. There are many ways to use a mask while letting Halloween costumes stand out!

Do bring hand sanitizer – and use it frequently.

Do have your children wait their turn to walk up to each house so they can practice safe physical distancing.

Don’t go out in a large group.

If you’re handing out candy to trick-or-treaters:

Do have a table set up with pre-arranged candy so children can grab what they need without reaching into a bowl. If possible, set it up closer to the road and not at your doorway.

Do get creative in thinking of ways to hand out candy while practicing safe physical distancing. 

Do give out only packaged candy.

Don’t give out candy if you’re not feeling well. Stay inside!

Halloween parties:

Do keep the party list to people who live in your household. Bake some Halloween treats, cook a Halloween themed meal, tell ghost stories, watch a spooky movie, or participate in an online gathering (e.g., Zoom, House Party, etc.). For those with young children, create a scavenger hunt complete with riddles and hide treats or Halloween themed objects throughout your residence. Carve pumpkins – don’t like the mess? Paint one instead. Experiment with magic! 

Do dress up. 

Do decorate your residence.

Don’t host a large group.

To keep yourself, your family and your community safe, always follow the COVID-19 safety guidelines. Have a safe and happy Halloween! ​