The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends against door-to-door trick-or-treating this year, calling it a “higher-risk” activity due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services includes house-to-house trick-or-treating in a list of activities to avoid this year, along with large outdoor gatherings and indoor parties.

Some local health departments have followed suit.

For example, “The North Shore Health Department recommends that communities not schedule village or city-wide trick-or-treat events this year to avoid large gatherings of children and families.” 

North Shore Health Department Halloween guidance

North Shore Health Department Halloween guidance (Photo: North Shore Health Department)

Many neighborhoods that usually hold massive trick-or-treat gatherings have canceled this year, and some localities, including Milwaukee and Shorewood, have decided not to schedule community trick-or-treat times.

Health officials recommend safer pandemic-era celebrations this year such as:

  • virtual costume contests
  • scary movie-watching with Halloween snacks within individual households
  • socially distanced outdoor pumpkin carving
  • family walks