Staying safe and healthy this Halloween

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Photo courtesy of the city of Grove City
Grove City’s annual Boo on Broadway has been canceled for 2020 but kids can still dress up and head out for traditional door-to-door trick or treating.

Due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the city’s annual Boo on Broadway has been canceled but the traditional Beggar’s Night will still take place from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 29.

The Grove City Division of Police reminds residents of a few simple safety tips. Drivers are encouraged to practice additional caution because of high pedestrian traffic that evening. Children are impulsive and may not always remember to be safe.

Before Trick-or-Treat, parents are encouraged to:
• Choose a costume easy to be seen and to walk in. It is best to select a non-flammable material.
• Use reflective tape on costumes and provide a flashlight.
• Make sure the eye holes on masks are large enough to see out of or use face paint as an alternative. If a child does wear a mask, instruct him/her to take it off before crossing the street.
• Plan a route ahead of time with children, picking streets that are well-lit and they know well.
• Accompany children or send them with an older sibling or a group.
• Send a phone with the child and provide instructions for calling 911 in an emergency or when lost.
• Secure emergency identification (name, address, phone number) discreetly within the costume or on a bracelet.

During Trick-or-Treat, encourage children to:
• Travel in a group and hold on to treat bags tightly.
• Only stop at houses with well-lit porches. Travel in a familiar neighborhood.
• Cross the street only at corners and never cross between parked cars or the middle of the block.
• Walk on well-lit streets and stay on sidewalks.
• Watch out for candles in jack-o’-lanterns that may catch clothes on fire.
• Never go into the home of a stranger, even if invited inside for a treat.
• When there is no sidewalk, walk single-file as far left on the roadway as possible, facing traffic.

After Trick-or-Treat, parents are encouraged to:
• Sort and check treats in a well-lit area.
• Throw away any candy or food that is not wrapped and sealed by the manufacturer.
• Carefully check all wrappers for signs of tampering.
• Always wash and cut open fruit before taking a bite.
• If any harmful items are found, notify the Grove City Division of Police at 614-277-1710.

Coronavirus precautions
Those who choose to participate in their community’s trick or treating, should use these health and safety tips for a safe and happy Halloween during COVID-19.

Trick or Treaters
• Stay home if you or your child feels sick, has symptoms of COVID-19 or is at high risk of complications.
• Wear a face mask, except for children under 2 years of age and individuals with medical exceptions.
• Make sure your face mask completely covers your nose and mouth at all times.
• Maintain social distance of at least six feet from other groups.
• Trick or treat with people in your own household.
• Avoid doors with a cluster of people. Stay back and wait until nobody else is at the door.
• Participate in Halloween activities outdoors if possible.
• Avoid large parties, gatherings and indoor activities.
• Bring hand sanitizer to use between houses.
• Take only wrapped candy or treats.
• Wash your hands when finished trick or treating before eating candy.

Treat Givers
• Do not give out candy if you or anyone in your household feels sick, has symptoms of COVID-19 or is at high risk of complications.
• Designate one person per household to hand out candy.
• Wear a face mask and put it on before opening the door.
• Make sure the mask completely covers your nose and mouth.
• Put treats in individual baggies and lay them out instead of putting them in a large bowl.
• Sit outside behind a table to give out treats.
• Provide hand sanitizer for trick or treaters.
• Wash your hands frequently.
• Get a flu vaccine.

Visit coronavirus.ohio.gov for more safety tips.

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