Party Plan: Celebrate a Pandemic Halloween I

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Halloween is an October holiday that has traditionally been celebrated by creative spooky decorating, trick-or-treating, parties and community events. But this year with the coronavirus crisis, many traditions will have to be curtailed. So in this post, Celebrate a Pandemic Halloween I, let’s look at new ways to make the holiday festive.
Many communities have already banned door-to-door trick-or-treating and large parties. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has listed a number of ways to celebrate the holiday and categorized them as low, moderate or high-risk activities:

“High risk” Halloween activities:

  • Traditional trick-or-treating
  • Crowded indoor costume parties
  • Indoor haunted houses
  • Hayrides or tractor rides with people not in a family or who don’t live together
“Moderate risk” Halloween activities:

  • One-way trick-or-treating, with bags lined up for families outdoors, and social distance maintained
  • Costume parties outdoors where people can remain six feet apart
  • Open-air, one-way, walk-through haunted forest visits
  • Visiting pumpkin patches or going apple picking, while maintaining social distancing, wearing masks, and using hand sanitizer

“Low-risk” Halloween activities:

  • Carving and decorating pumpkins with the family or members of a household
  • Decorating a house, apartment or living space
  • Having a virtual Halloween costume contest
  • Having a family or household Halloween movie night

The CDC has created a website Halloween2020  which features a US map showing risk levels in all the states and ideas for safer ideas for Halloween celebrations.

Here are some Halloween ideas you can use at your home to make the holiday more festive for your family:

Celebrate Halloween Around the World but From Home
You might not be able to travel the globe right now, but you can do so in spirit. Educate your family and friends on Día de los Muertos in Mexico, Samhain in Ireland and Scotland, Dzień Zaduszny in Poland or Ghost Festival in East Asia. Celebrate these other traditions, and consider cooking or baking traditional foods and making crafts associated with those international events.
Make a Reservation at a Pumpkin Patch
Check your local pumpkin patches to see which are open with safety precautions, such as cashless payment, masks, hand sanitizer, limited capacity and maybe even by reservation only to ensure social distancing and safety.Decorate Your House to the Hilt

Transform your neighborhood by transforming the outside of your home with homemade or store-bought decorations. Put out pumpkins, scarecrows, witches, ghosts and spiders to evoke the mood of the season. Decorate the inside of your home with fun accessories that will excite your family. Decorating your artificial Christmas tree with Halloween colors and decorations can be a fun family activity.

Create your own Halloween DIY treats or order Halloween specials from restaurants

Check the Internet to create your own Halloween desserts and snacks to enjoy at home, or order takeout from one of the restaurants serving up Halloween-themed menu items and deals. IHOP, Papa John’s and Chipotle are expected to resurrect their themed pancakes, Jack-O’-Lantern pizza and boo-rito!

Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF

UNICEF USA is launching a virtual Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF platform, and through the month of October, you can add purpose to Halloween by collecting lifesaving donations for UNICEF virtually. In honor of the 70th anniversary of this iconic American tradition, this year’s initiative will be comprised of digital, interactive, fun, and empowering experiences all while teaching children the importance of giving back and helping others. Sign up today at trickortreatforunicef.

Dress for Dinner in Costume

Don’t just wear the costume… become the costume! Plan a Halloween feast for your family with one rule… everyone must stay in costume and in character for the entire meal! Give each participant some time to come up with an accent and a backstory before the night begins; this way the laughter and the memories will be endless!

Dress up for Costume Week

Get your full mileage out of your costume. Dress up throughout the entire week leading up to the big day! Encourage your friends and family  to run errands, walk the dog or join a zoom meeting… in costume!

Take Porch Pictures

Commemorate this once-in-a-blue-moon Halloween with some memorable porch pictures! Grab your selfie-stick, put on your costume, and get out there for some #halloweenporchpics. This is a great reason to do coordinated family and pet costumes. Get group and solo shots. Don’t forget to show off your Halloween decorations.

Try Costume Tik Toks

Inspiration abounds when it comes to making a like-worthy Tik Tok. Try the family costume challenge and flash from smallest to largest family member.

Watch Movies at a Halloween Netflix Party

Netflix should be offering up some Halloween classics and spooky-spiked favorites to choose from this season. It’s the perfect time to check out their new free extension that lets you start, stop and pause a movie so you can watch it at the same time as a group of friends or family — remotely. Pop some popcorn and throw on your favorite spooky movies and TV shows.

Sing along at a Halloween Karaoke

No matter what you are singing, a Halloween hit list for a night of karaoke is sure to cause extreme laughter. You can up the ante with awards or prizes for the best impersonation, funniest choreography or the greatest overall showman!

Whack at a Halloween Piñata

This is a fun way for the kids to get candy without the spread of germs! Add some Halloween tunes, and turn your evening into a family game night with the piñata as the grand finale!

Participate in a Zoom Pumpkin-Carving Contest.

Invite your friends to a Zoom party where you all gather remotely to decorate and carve pumpkins safely from your own homes. Interact while you craft by sharing spooky stories. At the end, award prizes (virtual prizes or ones you send via snail mail) to the best looks!

Set up a Zoom Halloween Costume or Dance Party

Invite your friends to join your family for a costume party on the computer. Host a Zoom dance party where your friends can gather and do the “Monster Mash” or learn the “Thriller” choreography.

Create a “haunted” Egg Hunt

Egg hunts are a popular way to celebrate Easter in the spring. Why not replicate the idea with a Halloween twist?  It will be like an Easter egg hunt, but with scary music and spooky stuff, followed by a scary movie and popcorn afterwards. It can be in the yard or the house. This idea can work for single families staying home, or it can be a way to allow neighborhood trick-or-treaters to stop at your house for candy while still maintaining social distance. “Scatter the eggs on your lawn, and kids can respectfully pick up one or two. Start early while it’s still light or put glowsticks in glow-in-the-dark eggs from Amazon so they glow.

Check out my post on October for more safe ideas that you can try! Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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