Halloween is Not Cancelled: Celebrating Safely


With Halloween being right around the corner and COVID-19 restrictions still in place, the big question arises: Will Halloween be “cancelled” this year? The answer, happily, is no—not if we adopt the right attitude. Halloween is not cancelled. Trick-or-treating is definitely not the safest option during a pandemic, but the good news is that everything else about Halloween actually isn’t too frightening, at least from an epidemiological perspective. Pumpkin Carving, decorating for Halloween, and shopping for costumes is still a go for many!  

Kids are adaptable, and changes are not always terrible. This year’s Halloween will be different — but that doesn’t mean it won’t be fun. There is no rule that says the only way to have fun on Halloween requires jamming your hand into a bucket of candy.  Planning a Halloween celebration at home is a safe and creative way to celebrate Halloween. Below you will find tips for decor, party games, activities, and snacks/foods for a fun and safe at-home Halloween party. 

Selecting a theme for your Halloween party allows you to set the stage for your activities.  The options available to you are seemingly endless when it comes to theme and décor for Halloween. You might set a dress code and have your family dress up as characters from your favorite superhero movie, or if you have older children/teens your family can dress up as characters from your family’s favorite horror movie. When it comes to decor, I find the easiest way to come up with ideas is by browsing social media sites like Pinterest and Instagram. To create the perfect Halloween ambiance for your party, remember to include décor essentials like hanging spiders and cobwebs on ceilings and walls. Pumpkins, graves, tombstones, ghosts, skeletons, and bat-cutouts will help you create the perfect spooky atmosphere. 

Party games and fun activities are a great way to keep your family engaged and interested.  Here are some quick ideas for Halloween party games for kids:

  • Pin the bow on the skeleton. If you’re familiar with the “pinning the bow” game then you’ll easily adapt the same idea to skeletons or zombies. This is easy to set up and you can expect to get a lot of fun screams throughout the party.
  • Pumpkin chuck or bag toss. In this game, you give 3-5 bean bags to children who will toss them into pumpkins.
  • Scavenger hunt. A scavenger hunt is a great way to get everybody moving. Organizing this game requires some forethought where you’ll have to make a list of items and hide them in different places around the house.

You can also choose to include activities like face painting and cookie decorating stations for kids at your Halloween party. If you’re organizing a Halloween party for teens or adults, you might instead choose to play scary movie trivia, organize a horror movie viewing, or play Cards Against Humanity.

Food and drinks are an important part of the Halloween celebration.  You can get pretty crafty with Halloween drinks. For example, you can serve punch in lab equipment such as test tubes or in Halloween-themed glasses shaped as skulls. To kick things up a notch, you might even give your drinks spooky names that fit your Halloween party theme, like blood-curdling cocktail or deadman’s fruit punch. Of course, if you’re short on time, you can also order in and have one less thing to worry about. Don’t forget many local pizza restaurants offer jack-o-lantern themed pizzas that will go perfect with your Halloween party!

So remember, Halloween is not cancelled. Follow these simple steps and you’re on your way to an exciting at-home Halloween celebration! 


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