With Dallas County’s coronavirus risk level back at red, indicating that we should “stay home, stay safe,” our public health officials say trick-or-treating is not a smart or safe way to celebrate Halloween with the kids this year. Bringing together buckets of candy and excited children is a surefire way to spread germs. As much as we love a good fright, health scares are not the thrills to be seeking this spooky season.
“Unfortunately, it’s not going to be safe this year for kids to go door-to-door trick-or-treating,” says Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins. “Kids are excited, they’re breathing heavy, they’re sweating, they’re all sticking their hands in the same bucket to get candy. It’s a recipe for a super-spreader event. We don’t want our kids going back into schools–if they’re choosing in-person learning–and getting everyone sick.”
Dr. Casey Drake of Pecan Tree Pediatrics also advises against going door-to-door this Halloween.
“In general, I would advise against trick or treating as we know it,” she says. Drake understands that some people will do it anyway. “If offering treats, I would prepare individual treat bags. If your child collects treats, wipe them down and/or let them sit for a couple of days before opening.”
The best way to keep your family safe is to stick around your own haunted house. Try setting up an Easter egg-style scavenger hunt for candy in your home or backyard. Coordinate with the neighbors and have a contactless costume parade. Carve a jack-o-lantern (here are some tips), or give little kids markers or paint to decorate pumpkins.
If you are going to go out, here are some safer alternatives to neighborhood trick-or-treating.
Trunk or Treat at Dallas ReStore
Dallas Area Habitat For Humanity is hosting trunk-or-treat events for families at its four Dallas Restore locations on October 31 at 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Candy will be safely distributed and physical distancing rules will be enforced.
Drive Boo Halloween
The American Airlines Center Silver parking garage is now haunted and open for business. The drive-thru haunted house, presented by iHeart Radio, is a contact-free way to spend the holiday with your family. For a scarier experience, upgrade to VIP and venture to the top floor–if you dare. The house is open weekends through the end of October. Buy tickets here.
Trick or Tweet with Sour Patch Kids
The candy brand is having a Halloween giveaway in Dallas on October 31, and you could be one of the lucky recipients of a free, contactless candy delivery. To enter, head to the brand’s Instagram or Twitter between 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. and follow the rules (provided on each account). Winners will receive a trick-or-treat bucket filled with candy and toilet paper (to TP your living room with).
Hole-oween at Another Round
Indoor mini golf course Another Round is celebrating Halloween from October 23 to October 31 with Halloween-themed holes, trick-or-treating stations, and seasonal cocktails for the grown-ups. Reservations are required.
Brains and Baking
The Teach For America DFW Parents, Teachers, and Alumni group is hosting its first virtual family gathering on Friday, October 30 at 6 p.m. The Halloween-themed event includes a baking class with Stephanie Leichtle-Chalklen of Kuluntu Bakery and a lesson about the brain from social emotional health expert Michelle Kinder. The class is free, but you’ll need to have ingredients on-hand to participate. You can make a donation to Teach for America DFW here. Register for the Zoom event here.
Trick or Treat on Lowest Greenville
Businesses on Lower Greenville celebrate spooky season on Saturday, October 31 with a Fall Festival and trick-or-treating party. All shops and restaurants with orange balloons at their doors will be handing out candy for children, and other businesses will offer specials and sales. For a safer trip, you can also pick up Halloween-themed treats to-go from Joy Macarons, or order a Greenville Avenue Pizza Company Halloween pie topped with Nutella, candy corn, marshmallows, M&Ms, and Heath bar pieces.