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Arts & Culture

How to celebrate Halloween safely this year in San Antonio

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Halloween is coming up, and San Antonio Metropolitan Health District has announced guidance on how to celebrate safely.

“We know how much kids look forward to wearing fun and spooky costumes and going trick-or-treating on Halloween, and we also know that parents have questions whether it’s safe to do so this year because of COVID-19,” said Metro Health Director Claude A. Jacob in a press release.

The city advises that everyone who takes part in trick-or-treating this Halloween should mask up, regardless of whether they are vaccinated. Costume masks are not as effective as cloth or surgical masks, officials said. Metro Health provided a list of recommendations for those trick-or-treating and for those handing out candy.

For those trick-or-treating:

  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Bring hand sanitizer and use it frequently.
  • Limit the size of your group to those within your household.
  • Avoid going inside other people’s homes.
  • Only enjoy pre-packaged treats.
  • Wash your hands when you return home if you go trick-or-treating.

For those passing out candy:

  • Don’t hand out treats if you or someone in your household is sick.
  • Everyone should wash their hands before passing out treats.
  • Instead of handing out treats from a bowl, set up a table with individually wrapped bags of treats for kids to take.
  • Disinfect the table periodically.
  • When preparing treat bags, wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds before and after.

The city also provides alternatives to trick-or-treating, such as pumpkin carving and decorating, Halloween movie nights or celebrating with a piñata or “treat hunt” in your own backyard.

The city will also be celebrating Muertos Fest until Nov. 2.

People could be seen dressed in Dia de los Muertos attire and some even adorning skull face paint and decorations.

Overall, health officials recommend staying home if you’re not feeling well, limiting gatherings and hosting celebrations outdoors when possible.

“The best thing you can do to keep your family and friends safe from COVID is to get vaccinated today,” Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff said in a press release. “Also, encourage your friends and family members to do the same, so that everyone can enjoy the holidays with the peace of mind knowing they are protected from COVID.”

The city’s Alamodome vaccination site is open Wednesday through Friday from noon to 8 p.m. The county’s Wonderland of the Americas vaccination site is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Neither site requires appointments.

Find a list of pop-up clinics at covid19.sanantonio.gov or call 311 and select option 8.

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