Celebrate Halloween safely amid pandemic

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Wellman, Kalona and Riverside will hold trick-or-treat time from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 31 and Lone Tree will hold theirs from 5-7 p.m. on the same date.

Residents who don’t wish to receive any door-to-door visitors should keep their porch light and other exterior lights turned off. Residents also have the option to distribute candy without coming face-to-face with visitors by leaving treats on their porch, driveway or yard with their porch light on. Residents who want to hand candy directly to visitors should also keep their porch light on.

The CDC categorized traditional trick-or-treating, where treats are handed to children who go door to door as a high-risk activity. A safer alternative, categorized by the CDC as a moderate risk, is one-way trick-or-treating where individually wrapped goodie bags are lined up for families to grab while continuing to social distance, such as at the end of a driveway or at the edge of the yard.

The CDC recommends wearing face coverings during all Halloween events with people from outside your household.

Low-risk Halloween celebrations recommended by the CDC include carving pumpkins with your family or outdoors at a safe distance from friends and neighbors, holding a virtual costume contest, or going on a Halloween scavenger hunt in your neighborhood to look for decorations.

It is also important to remember pedestrian and traffic safety when celebrating Halloween — according to the National Safety Council, children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than any other day of the year.

Sunset on Oct. 31 will be at 6:02 p.m. Remember that dark-colored costumes and clothes are harder to see in the dark. The NSC recommends carrying glow sticks or flashlights when walking or affixing reflective tape to costumes and bags. Drivers are also encouraged to turn their headlights on earlier in the evening than normal to increase visibility.

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