Looking for ways to safely enjoy Halloween, during the pandemic

Halloween falls on a Saturday, this year, and while health authorities are discouraging traditional celebrations, a lot of people looking for ways to participate safely.

At the very least, a drive through any neighborhood shows families are in the 'mood', with their frightful decorations.

But choosing to trick-or-treat is a conversation with no clear-cut answers. On the 'Nextdoor' app, neighborhoods are already talking about a Halloween that includes everything from 'Let the kids enjoy' to 'Don't bother coming to my house'.

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So, assuming a little trick or treating is in the plans, Harris County Health offers some guidelines that can help minimize risks of exposure. For those roaming the neighborhoods:
    - No large groups.
    - Masks for everyone, like those we wear day-to-day.
    - Social distancing from those providing treats.
    - Sanitizer before and after each encounter.

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For those providing treats, start with vigorous hand washing before touching any of the candy, and avoid opening the door for trick-or-treaters. Instead, leave the treats out for them to collect and consider pre-packaging them to limit cross-contact.

And, those looking to take a break are not alone. A recent survey by the See's candy company finds more than half plan to stay-in for Halloween; nearly a third will turn the lights out; another third will put out some candy and call it a night. 70% say they hope and expect that it all may be back to normal, next year.