Halloween can be one of most exciting nights of the year for children – but it can also be one of the most dangerous. Have a safer holiday with these tips from the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office:

Before you leave the house

  • Give your child a flashlight or glow stick to carry or add reflective tape to their costume. That way, they can be seen more easily by passing cars.
  • Also make sure their costume doesn’t block their vision – and that they can walk in it without tripping. Face paint is a good alternative to a mask.
  • Remind your children about ‘stranger-danger,’ and to not get into an unfamiliar car (or enter an unfamiliar house).

While you’re trick-or-treating

  • If you have a younger child, don’t let them go trick-or-treating alone. Have an adult – or older sibling – go with them.
  • Avoid crossing the street between cars or in the middle of the block. Instead, cross at the corners.
  • When driving through a neighborhood, be alert. Watch for trick-or-treaters entering the street.

When you get home

  • When you get home from trick-or-treating, sort through your child’s candy and carefully inspect it. Throw away anything that looks suspicious – or isn’t wrapped.

COVID-19 Safety Tips
This information was provided by the Onondaga County Health Department

  • Stay at least 6 feet from those you don’t live with.
  • Get creative if you’re handing out treats: use a chute, tongs, or set up a station outdoors with individually packaged treats for kids to take.
  • Don’t put candy in a big bowl for kids to grab from, and don’t have direct contact with trick-or-treaters.
  • Stay in small groups if you do go out.
  • Don’t wear a costume mask in place of a cloth face mask.
  • Don’t hand out candy if you or someone in your household are sick or are in quarantine or isolation.

The Onondaga County Health Department also recommends the following “safer” Halloween activities: virtual costume contest; family movie night; Halloween scavenger hunt; and pumpkin decorating.

For more information, visit ongov.net/health.


Courtney Kless is the Editor in Chief of Family Times. Courtney is originally from Maryland. She earned her Master’s degree in Magazine, Newspaper and Online Journalism from Syracuse University. Courtney began her career as a sports journalist, then spent several years working in higher education, before joining the company in August 2019. She enjoys traveling, reading and hiking, and recently adopted a Labrador Retriever, Bailey.

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