Halloween is a time where kids across the country are preparing their costumes and candy buckets. While Halloween should be a fun night, it also needs to be a safe one. There are many aspects of trick or treating that can lead to unsafe situations. From unsafe candy to unfriendly strangers, parents have to be vigilant during trick or treating. One of the main factors that can lead to other unsafe situations is timing.
When Should You Trick or Treat?
Most cities have a trick or treating date and time assigned each year. Check your local news station or newspaper to find out what that day and time is. If you can’t take your child on that date and time, take a look at surrounding areas. Times are typically from 5-7:30 PM or something similar, so that the kids aren’t out past dark and you need to stick to that assigned time.
Trick or treating after the city assigned hours have passed could lead to dangerous encounters and very unhappy homeowners. If you’re unfamiliar with a neighborhood or begin to feel unsafe, you should leave right away regardless of the time. Overall, aim to be home before dark and you should be perfectly safe.
Alternative Trick or Treating
If you’re unable to make it to designated trick or treating times in your area or surrounding areas, it doesn’t mean your child has to miss out on the fun. Many churches and groups hold events called “trunk or treat” where you can take your child around the property of the church or event building and they can gather candy from people you both already know. These events often happen at different times than traditional trick or treating so it provides more flexibility and peace of mind for the parents. Nursing homes and retirement homes often offer indoor trick or treating options which would be safe rather it’s dark out or not!
If you’re going to be taking the traditional door to door trick or treating approach, consider adding some reflective strips to your child’s costume. This will help you keep an eye on them as the sun sets and cars will have no problem seeing them as they cross the street. It is possible to maintain a safe trick or treating experience after dark, but it becomes much more challenging.