With Halloween just around the corner and COVID-19 numbers rising, we’re not holding our breath for an executive order from Ontario that we will be celebrating Halloween in the style we’re all used to. Gone (or paused) are the days of large groups of children running house-to-house in exchange for candies from the hands of strangers (all while eating their treats en-route with unsanitized hands). However, the current pandemic doesn’t mean we have to sit out on Halloween this year; it simply means we have to get creative! And with parents and caregivers having pandemic brain (or is it just us??!!), we thought we’d help you out with some alternative ideas to trick-or-treating. Here are some spook-tacular ideas on how to safely celebrate Halloween during the year of COVID-19 – which is very fitting because it has already proven to be the MOST terrifying year yet!
Spooky Hand Sanitizer
Is there anything more coveted in 2020 than hand sanitizer? With this little germ-killing juice found in bags, cars, entranceways and everywhere in between, we thought that making some of your own would be both fun and practical. With some simple household items and a quick run to the pharmacy, you can brew up your own batch. If you’re not feeling up to brewing your own concoction of hand sanitizer, you can always take a pre-made batch and make it more “Halloweeny” with a few tricks. Dye, glitter and Halloween-shaped cutouts can help kids decorate their magic cleaning potion. Better yet, all public health agencies agree that proper hand washing is the gold standard to combat all germs, including COVID-19. Encourage your little ones to wash their hands by making it fun! Take yummy smelly hand soap, add in a few Halloween props (toy eyeballs, tiny skeletons, or creepy spiders) and those black lights won’t find anything on your family’s hands!
There are probably more tubs of Halloween décor in most peoples’ houses than Christmas. It’s something that so many of us just love to lean into (#guilty). This year, without going door-to-door and keeping things closer to (inside) home, take your Halloween decorating to the next level. Most years, people only decorate the outside of their homes, but this year we encourage you to decorate everywhere and anywhere inside the house – from the kitchen and bathrooms to bedrooms and closets. You can get creative by making your own decorations or you can buy items, like these black and white party fans that can be used again and again. We just can’t get enough of décor that is eco-friendly and reusable!
Neighbourhood Window Scavenger Hunt
Do you have a community that just LOVES Halloween for the social interactions? Why not have a socially distanced-approved window scavenger hunt? Have someone in your neighbourhood take the lead on assigning items for each house to display in their window on Halloween eve. Items such as pumpkins, bats, spiders, witches and so on can be creatively added to houses for kids to search and find. Make your own spooky checklists for the hunt, dress-up in your best costumes and ensure a candy prize when your little ones find their final item.
Not feeling up to wrangling kids out for a neighbourhood walk? Keep the scavenger hunt close to home by hiding candies around your house or yard! The Easter Bunny doesn’t have full rights to these hunts, and if anything, 2020 has shown us that we all have to be a bit flexible.
Now you know that the first thing the kids are going to say when you tell them there is no (or limited trick-or-treating) is…”BUT WHAT ABOUT ALL THE CANDY!?!?!” Let them know that you can still fill their buckets with the help and fun of a piñata. Shop Caring Confetti piñatas for ones that are not only high quality but are beautifully designed. What we love even more is that once the party is over, these beauties can be added to a bedroom or playroom shelf.
Pumpkin Carving Contest (and pumpkin-seed roast-off!)
Are you a traditional pumpkin carver who does big eyes and a missing tooth or a are you known as the gourd Picasso? Let the whole family show off their skills with a pumpkin-carving contest. For the artistically challenged, you can always print off a jack-o-lantern template where you’ll score high on technical ability but low in the artistic category (trust me, this is my MO!). You can even take the competition out to the community by inviting friends and neighbours to join in! Pumpkins can be displayed on front porches or park walkways for enjoyment, fresh air and voting. The winner gets all the pumpkin seeds!
Ghostbusters, Casper, Hocus Pocus and Beetlejuice are just a few of our annual must-watch Halloween movies. More time indoors means more time to watch and share these beloved films with our kids. Since Halloween falls on a Saturday this year, you can even curl up in costume or Halloween pyjamas during the afternoon and enjoy an age-appropriate movie! Pair it with popcorn mixed with pumpkin-shaped candies and Halloween treats. Invite another family or friend(s) within your bubble to get into the spooky spirit together! #bettertogether
Bingo is a great game that can be enjoyed by all ages. Shop cute bingo games like these or create your own on the computer with images synonymous with Halloween. Instead of stamps, cover the Halloween symbols on your card with candies. That way, regardless who wins the game, everyone gets to enjoy some sugar (and tears can be kept at bay!)
Monster Mash Dance Party
It was the MMOOOONNNNSSSTTTAAA MASH (you’re doing the voice too aren’t you?) With costumes on, dim the lights and set Google to the ultimate Halloween playlist. It’s as simple as that. Watch your kids lose their minds and dance their little heart rates up to 300bpm by giving them flashlights and glow sticks. And if you really want to take it to the next level, bring out the karaoke machine…or don’t!
Share Scary Stories
Discovering the perfect age to tell scary stories is really trial and error. We have a 6-year-old who always sits wide-eyed and will lap up whatever gruesome story is being shared; and a 9-year-old who, at the mention of ghost stories, will end up becoming my bedmate for weeks. Test the waters with some spooky, but FUN stories and learn how to read a room (or tones of screams) to know how far you can really take this Halloween tradition.
As loved as Halloween is, COVID-19 is really putting a kink in plans this year. Our most recent Instagram poll indicates that 83% of followers are not going trick-or-treating this year, so if you’re doubting your decision, know that you’re not alone. As with everything these past few months, we WILL celebrate a bit differently, our kids WILL adapt….and yes, you’ll STILL see the dentist in a few weeks to address the copious amount of candy your little ones will eat (#parentguilt!)
Do you have a Halloween tradition or notice something we might have missed? Let us know by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Caring Confetti is an online boutique that offers curated birthday party supplies, children’s gifts and party favours. They bring together premium brands and independent boutiques into one place – providing your child with the party they want, with the balance you need.
Caring Confetti was founded by Karin Archer Myles and Chelsea Bristow who wanted to offer convenient solutions to families seeking the picture-perfect party.