Municipalities offer trick-or-treating tips for the coronavirus era
Good news for trick-or-treaters and the homeowners who intend to supply them with goodies Saturday: Municipalities throughout the suburbs have established guidelines for celebrating Halloween more safely, even as COVID-19 positivity rates creep upward.
Besides setting specific hours for trick-or-treating, many villages and towns have made available on their websites printable signs for homeowners that indicate if they will distribute treats or opt out entirely.
Typical recommendations include: facial coverings for trick-or-treaters and homeowners; prepackaged treats distributed outdoors; small groups consisting of residents of the same household; and social distancing of at least 6 feet between groups.
Gurnee's website recommends setting goody bags outside and turning on a porch light to indicate trick-or-treaters are welcome. Grayslake cautions against homeowners using communal bowls to distribute treats. Round Lake recommends trick-or-treaters carry hand sanitizer and use it liberally.
Libertyville's website suggests distributing candy from the lawn or driveway to maintain a safe distance, while Lincolnshire advises homeowners who've decided against participating to turn off the porch light and lock the door. Vernon Hills recommends that parents attach reflective items to their children's costumes to make them more visible.
Northbrook discourages trick-or-treaters from ringing doorbells and encourages homeowners to "get creative with your candy distribution." Glenview reminds everyone to wash hands before consuming candy.
Wheaton's website points out that a Halloween costume mask is not a substitute for a cloth face covering.
Elk Grove Village and Rolling Meadows suggest homeowners wear gloves in addition to face coverings. Hoffman Estates advises homeowners use motion-activated decorations to alert them that trick-or-treaters are at the door instead of relying on the doorbell. The village also recommends distributing easily sanitized treats such as pencils in place of candy.