Halloween is not canceled because of community trick-or-treat drive-thru
NOTE: An error with the original version portrayed U.S. Cellular as the company hosting the event with a chance to win $1000. They are the title sponsor of the event, offering the chance to win $1000 in a nationwide event. The News Review and Brooke Communications are also sponsors of the event.
Halloween is not canceled even though most members of the community remain skeptical about partying or trick-or-treating.
Brooke Communications and The News Review, along with other sponsors, are putting on a Halloween trick-or-treat drive-thru and drive-in movie theatre at the Douglas County fairgrounds on Oct. 31, starting at 5 p.m. and ending around 7 p.m., or until no candy remains.
They will distribute candy in bags to children in their cars, but the event welcomes all community members and ages. After the bags are handed out, Brooke Communications and The News Review will show “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” free in the drive-in format for viewers in their cars, starting at dark and ending around 9 p.m.
U.S. Cellular, the title sponsor, wants to “hand out candy to kids but needs to protect them,” said Will Wimberly, manager of the Roseburg U.S. Cellular office. By doing the trick-or-treat drive-thru, Wimberly said the company gives the children of the community an opportunity to have a normal Halloween while removing social contact.
U.S. Cellular Director of Sales Erryn Andersen also said that U.S. Cellular knows the hardships and difficulties people have endured. She said that U.S. Cellular takes a lot of pride in contributing to the community.
Parking is held for about 200 vehicles, with overflow behind the parking lot, according to Erryn Andersen.
Aside from U.S. Cellular, many community members are trying to be safe over the holiday.
“My Halloween experience isn’t really like the traditional Halloween,” said UCC Student Katie Jakubos. “I’ve always gone to a church and helped them do like a little carnival-esque scenario for the younger kids, and it’s always changed church to church.”
However, Jakubos’s plans have changed this year because of the pandemic. “I honestly will probably be working, and if not that then I may ask a few friends to get together and have like pizza and a movie, but that’s about it. I know I’m not a high risk person, but my family is, and my job is around a lot of elderly people and a lot of potentially immune deficient people, and I would like to keep my job and keep my customers satisfied.”
Others agree that going out during Halloween is unsafe. “I wouldn’t go out in the pandemic,” said Ali Araiza of Roseburg. “I have younger siblings and a grandfather to worry about. Even if I got it, and I recovered just fine, I’d still be concerned for their health.”
Araiza has other ways that she would spend her night. “I would stay, bake some sweet treats like cookies and brownies and just have a movie marathon,” she said. “My plan is to stay in and relax. I’m gonna watch some Tim Burton films.”
Many may wonder, however, if it’s still unsafe to host or attend meetings on Halloween. “Celebrating virtually or with members of your own household pose[s] low risk for spread,” according to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website. “In-person gatherings pose varying levels of risk.” The state has requested that Oregonians keep indoor gatherings to 10 people or less.
The CDC website includes research that favors guests staying six feet apart and wearing masks. CDC also suggests that people who are under the weather or who are at higher risk of the disease should avoid these gatherings.
The disease has left many celebrators avoiding large gatherings. Fortunately for people who still want to celebrate, there are options. The CDC and online communities have many different ideas of ways to celebrate.
Some activities from the CDC website include scavenger hunts for candy and virtual events that could include costume contests. It warns against people (who do not live in the same household) interacting closer than a minimum of six feet. For more information, be sure to check the CDC website for tips on gatherings and holiday events.
Although it is higher risk to hand the candy out to people directly, there are going to be attempts to make handing out candy safe and fun. “Some of the ideas I’ve heard are: setting up a chute made of long cardboard tubes or plastic piping, then sending candy down the tubes,” said Utah mother Lisa Rampton Halverson on the NPR website.
Pediatrician Heather Isaacson on the KHN website suggests, “Think outside of the box with ideas like a reverse trick-or-treating, where kids stay home and dress up and neighbors do a parade and throw candy.”
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