Manhattan community makes plans for safe Halloween festivities

A mini Black Panther collects some Halloween candy during the annual Trick or Treat event in Aggieville on Oct. 12, 2018. (Archive Photo by Alex Todd | Collegian Media Group)

With Halloween rapidly approaching, college students and community members begin to make plans for how to celebrate the holiday this year.

In spite of the pandemic, enjoying the celebration while remaining safe is not impossible, but requires some changes this year, local health officer Julie Gibbs said.

“Trick-or-treating may look a little different this year, as we should all continue to avoid large gatherings and large crowds,” Gibbs said in an email. “I would highly suggest for those houses offering candy to children that they not have the traditional candy bowl where everyone reaches into the same thing.”

This is promising news for those that want to be cautious, but also do not want their children to miss the Halloween tradition of trick-or-treating.

“We are going trick-or-treating,” Sarah Taylor, who plans on taking her four-year-old niece out trick-or-treating in Manhattan, said. “I am not going to let COVID-19 stop her from having a good time and celebrating the holiday, but we are still taking precautions.”

Taylor said they plan to wear masks, not touch candy buckets and instead let the person distributing candy put it in the bucket for her.

For those without children, Halloween celebrations often involve watching scary movies and spending time with friends, but there are still precautions one can take to mitigate the risk of exposure.