A small Tennessee town is discouraging door-to-door trick-or-treating this Halloween because of concerns over Covid-19, but there will still be events in the community for tiny ghouls, ghosts, pirates and princesses.
The Town of Mountain City said in a notice posted on its Facebook page that there would be drive-by trick-or-treating at a local community center and that churches and other organizations are holding Halloween events.
“We feel it is in the best interest of the Town to protect the health and safety of our citizens and not support trick or treating by going door to door,” the notice said.
City Recorder Sheila Shaw signed the notice and told CNN that the town usually posts rules for Halloween, but decided not to be involved this year.
“We’re not canceling Halloween,” Shaw said. “If you want to take your kids to trick-or-treat you can.”
The Town of Mountain City is in Johnson County, on the northeast tip of Tennessee, just a few miles from the North Carolina and Virginia state lines.
There have been 1,106 confirmed Covid-19 cases and seven deaths in the county, as of Tuesday, according to Johns Hopkins University. Tennessee has reported 233,569 coronavirus cases and 2,952 deaths from Covid-19.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued guidance to help adults keep their families safe while trick-or-treating.
It recommends making cloth masks a part of the costume and warned that wearing a regular costume mask over a cloth mask could interfere with breathing.
Trick-or-treaters should stay 6 feet away from people they don’t live with and should keep hand sanitizer with them, so they can use it regularly, the guidelines said.
If you’re giving out candy, the CDC recommends you avoid contact with trick-or-treaters, give the treats out outdoors if possible and set up a station with individually bagged treats instead of letting the kids paw through a bowl to get their favorite candy.
Mountain City said it would have additional police officers on patrol on Halloween and urged groups that are hosting activities to wrap them up by 8 p.m.