Halloween was likely the last thing on our minds to be concerned about last Spring, but in many places around the country, it has become another holiday casualty of 2020. Still, in the nation that invented monster trucks and Frito pie, there’s no telling what kind of excellent and creative adaptations we might see this year.
As of press time, the City of Georgetown isn’t planning a ban on, or additional restrictions for, trick-or-treating. However, they do ask everyone to practice the safety tips asked of us every other day of the year: Keep your distance from people outside of your home, wear a mask (spooky or otherwise, as long as it covers your nose and mouth), and don’t go out if you have symptoms.
With all that in mind, let’s get to the good stuff and think… if we can’t (or choose not to) do what we used to do, what can we do instead?
GO “GRISWOLD” ON YOUR HOUSE
Why not get in the spirit and decorate in and outside your home. Get the neighbors involved and have a whole haunted street for drive-by visitors. Maybe create a display and invite other families to compete for the best pumpkin designs. You can even steal this theme… Gourd-geous Disney Princesses!
Friends and classmates can gather on a video call and show off their creativity, with makeup or costume masks rather than the regular kind. But, if you are tired of doing everything virtual, find an outdoor space to fit a long, chalk runway, and get some strong flashlights to spotlight your model scarers from a distance.
If you have a lot of kids and families nearby, you can plan something in secret and just see who stops by to play a game or have a costume parade. Without advance notice, you are not likely to draw a large crowd, and people can come and go at their leisure to keep the numbers low.
Bag the Treats
We know the kids want candy. Instead of having a grab-bowl for many little hands, pack your treats in individually wrapped bags and leave them where they can easily be picked up from a table or blanket. Then just wave from the porch and replenish as necessary.
Or, STRING ‘EM UP!
If you want to keep folks from grouping up on the porch, bag some candies and hang them from your fence so kids can give them a quick swipe and go. Or add some lights to your trees and hang baggies there for gamey jump-n-grabs. You could throw in a spooky character or two amid the branches and flash the lights for extra surprises.
STAY HOME AND GET CRACKIN’
Break out those plastic Easter eggs and decorate them with Halloween stickers or pumpkin faces. Fill the eggs with candy and hide them outside or around the house. Bonus: squeeze some bendy glow bracelets inside and fill the yard with glowing eggs for a nighttime hunt.
This is my favorite from Halloween2020.org. Plan a path through neighboring woods or a park and light it up with glow sticks, flashlights and more. Line the trail with Halloween décor, props, candy, and surprises. Trees can be tied with ribbons to help follow social distance guidelines.
“BOO” SOMEONE IN NEED
Maybe consider donating your candy or party funds to Williamson County Brown Santa. Sure, Christmas is really their thing, but the annual “Nightmare on Jail Hill” at the historic jail near the Square is their biggest fundraiser, and they had to cancel this year. This annual fright-fest draws thousands of thrill seekers from all over Texas and raises upwards of $40,000, over a few weekends, for the Brown Santa fund. No doubt their Santa wish lists will need our help more than ever this year. Wilco.org/BrownSanta