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The CDC gives a major update on Halloween and COVID-19

Can you go trick-or-treating outside in 2021? Here’s what the CDC said

A costumed student during a Halloween drive-thru parade in Salt Lake City on Friday, Oct. 30, 2020.
A costumed student waves as she passes the staff from Mountain View and Glendale elementary schools during a Halloween drive-thru parade in Salt Lake City on Friday, Oct. 30, 2020.
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

Halloween will look a little more normal for 2021, according to Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Walensky said on “Face the Nation” over the weekend that trick-or-treating will be more normal in 2021, especially for those who feel comfortable spending time outdoors amid the pandemic.

  • “I certainly hope so,” she said “If you are able to be outdoors, absolutely.

However, Walensky said parents and children should limit the crowd size for different events they engage in during the annual fall holiday, CNBC reports.

  • “I wouldn’t necessarily go to a crowded Halloween party, but I think that we should be able to let our kids go trick-or-treating in small groups,” Walensky said. “I hope that we can do that this year.”

Last year, health officials suggested a little more caution when it came to Halloween. For example, the Utah Department of Health said people should “avoid direct contact with trick-or-treaters” and “give out treats outdoors if possible.”

The department said people should also “set up a station with individually bagged treats for kids to take, wash hands before handling treats, wear a mask, consider setting up a system to get candy to trick-or-treaters without any physical contact, and not give out anything homemade,” according to the Deseret News.

And the Utah Department of Health told the Deseret News that people should look to celebrate Halloween virtually.

  • “We don’t recommend having a Halloween party with people who don’t live in your home. If you want to have a Halloween party, keep it small and invite only immediate family members,” the department said. “You can lower the risk and make a Halloween party safer by taking precautions and using strategies to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”

Of course, that didn’t exactly go as planned. Thousands of people attended a Halloween party in Utah County on Halloween, according to the Deseret News. The party had somewhere between 2,000 to 10,000 people, police told the Deseret News.