WebMD News Brief

Los Angeles Bans Trick-or-Treating This Year

September 10, 2020 -- The Los Angeles Department of Public Health announced strict Halloween rules for this year, according to NBC Los Angeles. That includes bans on trick-or-treating, Halloween parties, carnivals, festivals, live entertainment and haunted houses that could spread the coronavirus.

“Door-to-door trick or treating is not allowed because it can be very difficult to maintain proper social distancing on porches and at front doors, especially in neighborhoods that are popular with trick or treaters,” according to the department’s Halloween guidance.

Similarly, children can’t do trunk-or-treating or car-to-car events. People also aren’t allowed to hold gatherings with non-household members, even if outdoors. The department didn’t give details about any penalties for violations.

The department encouraged people to hold online costume parties and pumpkin-carving contests, as well as car parades that allow for social distancing. People can dress up and decorate their vehicles and then “drive by” judges or audiences. Drive-through Halloween displays and drive-in Halloween events with individual, commercially-packaged treat bags are allowed.

Los Angeles residents can also attend Halloween movie nights at drive-in theaters, eat Halloween-themed meals at outdoor restaurants, visit Halloween-themed art installations at outdoor museums or venues, and decorate their homes and yards with Halloween-themed items.

“Since some of the traditional ways in which this holiday is celebrated does not allow you to minimize contact with non-household members, it is important to plan early and identify safer alternatives,” according to the department.

Several Halloween events and attractions have been changed, according to ABC Los Angeles. Universal Studios canceled its Halloween Horror Nights event, and the Haunted Hayride, usually held at Griffith Park, was moved to San Dimas and recreated as a drive-up experience.

WebMD Health News Brief Reviewed by Michael W. Smith, MD on September 10, 2020

Sources

NBC Los Angeles: “No Trick-or-Treating: LA County Health Officials Announce Strict Halloween Rules.”

Los Angeles County Department of Public Health: “Guidance for Celebrating Halloween.”

ABC Los Angeles: “No trick-or-treating in Los Angeles County this Halloween, health officials say.”

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