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Ideas for a Pandemic Halloween

Halloween—fun for children and adults. I was noted for my annual Halloween parties and creative costumes.

Halloween during a time of pandemic needs some changes to be safe.

Halloween during a time of pandemic needs some changes to be safe.

Let's Save Halloween!

In a time of a pandemic, the traditional Halloween fun doesn't seem safe. Going door-to-door interacting with people for trick-or-treating. Nope. Having lots of people gather in costumes for crowded Halloween parties? Nope. These activities just aren't wise with a deadly virus still going strong. That doesn't mean you can't have any fun this October.

Don't fall into despair, here are a bunch of creative ideas for salvaging the Halloween season. You and your children can still have fun all through October with these varied activities and ideas.

Quick List of Revamped Halloween Fun for Everyone

For more details for making or participating in these activities, look further down the page. For local events, check your community newspaper, your NextDoor Neighbors group, and on Facebook or other social media.

  • Haunted Drive-By (alternative to the usual haunted house)
  • Costume Parade (make sure it includes social distancing)

Ideas for Family Fun at Home

  • Spooky Skeleton (a spin-off from the Christmas Elf, you could get a small skeleton for this and put it about the house)
  • Halloween Count-Down Calendar (a new activity every day for October)
  • Make a Ghostly Miniature Garden (similar to a fairy garden)
  • Halloween Rock Painting
  • Create Skeleton Scenes in Your Yard
  • Set up the Christmas tree and start decorating it with homemade Halloween themed ornaments. Make paper chains of black and orange construction paper.

Trick or Treat (Social Distance Style)

How to Paint Halloween Rocks

Ideally, you get some special paint pens and fancy smooth stones and start painting. It doesn't have to cost you anything though. Start taking walks and look for good-sized smooth rocks (ones that fit in your hand). Rummage in your home supplies for any sort of paint (old paint-by-number set) or markers (Sharpies or Magic Marker kind).

Wash the rocks. let them dry, and start adding your designs. Don't worry about being a great artist. Try easy designs first like ghosts, a witch's pointed hat, a flying bat, a spider web, a spider, or the word BOO. You can get fancier with practice.

Take a walk and place a stone somewhere for someone to find. It could be on a window ledge of a downtown store or in the flower bed at a fast food place. When someone finds your rock, they will be delighted. You made someone happy.

Create a Variety of Skeleton Scenes in Your Yard

Instructions for Your October Countdown to Halloween Calendar

You need a large piece of cardboard or poster board, glue or double-sided tape, and some markers. To see a sample one, check out the blog post on the Spooky Little Halloween site. An internet search will turn up other examples.

  • Cut plain paper or construction paper for each window.
  • Fold each of those in half.
  • Write an activity inside each folded piece.
  • Glue it to the poster board.
  • Put the numbers 1 through 31 on the outside of each folded piece.

Ideas for Activities to Put in the Windows of the Countdown Calendar

These can be in any order you want. Make up your own activities to suit your family. I put a batch below to get you started.

I've put some tips in (parenthesis). Omit those as you fill in the windows.

  1. buy a pumpkin
  2. find the ghost hiding in the living room (put a picture of a ghost under the sofa cushions)
  3. carve a jack-o-lantern
  4. draw spooky pictures
  5. write Halloween poems
  6. make Halloween cookies
  7. paint rocks
  8. take a drive to see Halloween decorations
  9. Zoom friends to show your Halloween costume
  10. tell ghost stories (turn off lights and just have a flashlight)
  11. have a face painting session
  12. watch a Halloween show on TV
  13. make a ghost garden
  14. play pin-the-hat-on-the-witch (make your own game)
  15. write a spooky story (write it down for the younger ones)
  16. decorate the window with bats (find flying bat outline, use black construction paper)
  17. make Halloween cards to mail
  18. make a creepy doll or teddy bear

Candy Chute - a Way to Hand Out Treats From a Distance

Create a Creepy Doll

ideas-for-a-pandemic-halloween

Tips for Making a Spooky Doll Or Toy

If doing this craft project with children, be sure they are old enough not to be frightened by the concept. Also, emphasize that they are not to destroy their dolls and teddy bears for this. Make sure they know it is just the one you provide and no more.

  • Select a damaged doll that is no longer wanted, or buy one at a yard sale or thrift store.
  • Cover the work table with plastic or newspapers to protect it.
  • Get out paint, markers, other supplies for distressing the doll.
  • Let their imagination go to work.
  • Give suggestions if they are running out of ideas (mess up the hair, tear the dolls clothing, color the eyes an odd color or remove the eyes)

Are You Changing Your Halloween Activities Because of the Pandemic?

Starting a Halloween Ghost Garden (Fairy-Sized)

I found this miniature bird house at a craft store for $1. After a little paint and some autumn stickers, it's ready for the fairy (or ghost) garden.

I found this miniature bird house at a craft store for $1. After a little paint and some autumn stickers, it's ready for the fairy (or ghost) garden.

Making a Miniature Halloween Garden

For a miniature garden, you only need a container to hold some dirt, a few small plants, and some accessories. You can make some of the props to use in the ghostly miniature garden (like a fairy garden). Create a path with some small flat rocks. Make some small tombstones for a spooky graveyard. Put together a tiny scarecrow or make a ghost figure.

Put it all together and you have what is usually called a fairy garden, but for this time of year, it's your ghostly garden. For more ideas, check out some Halloween Fairy Gardens online.

A Video With More Ideas for Halloween Fairy Gardens

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2020 Virginia Allain

Comments

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on September 22, 2020:

We still want to celebrate but we just have to be creative in making this holiday fun. Than you for your useful suggestions.