Happy Fall y'all! Well, almost. The first day of fall isn't until next week, but it's still something to look forward to. Cooler weather, more football (safely, of course), and we're inching closer and closer to Halloween, and my personal favorite, Thanksgiving.

For the kiddos, Halloween is everything. Candy and costumes make up one of the biggest holidays of the year for them. But thanks to our good ol' pal COVID-19, just like everything else, Halloween will look a little different this year.

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The Hershey candy company is trying to help us navigate the pandemic a little better by sharing an interactive map that details the COVID-19 risk in communities across the country. The company says they have worked with health professionals and retailers to create the website to offer advice on how to trick-or-treat safely with your family.

According to the map, each county in the U.S. is represented by a code - either green, yellow, orange, or red. To find where your county falls, check out the interactive map here.

Green suggestions:

  • Regular trick-or-treating with social distancing guidelines
  • Invite a limited number of guests over for a themed costume party
  • Participate in a neighborhood trunk or treat to help minimize the close quarters of pathways and porches

Yellow suggestions:

  • Drive up trick-or-treating where neighbors set up candy curbside
  • Host a neighborhood costume parade with routes marked to maintain safe distances between participants. Pets can participate in this too!
  • Throw a face mask decoration party with limited guests

Orange suggestions:

  • Trick or treat in reverse by having neighbors walk or drive-by and deliver candy to the front yard
  • Hold a neighborhood candy hunt with social distancing guidelines
  • Throw a neighborhood driveway pub crawl

Red suggestions:

  • Throw a Zoom party
  • Have a Netflix scary movie party on the phone or Zoom where everyone starts the scary movie at the same time
  • Take family porch photos
  • Create a Halloween piñata with just your family in the back yard
  • Have a costume Halloween dinner with your family

U.S. families can also take the 'Safe House Pledge'. The pledge states that the family of the home hosting trick-or-treaters is following social distancing protocols, and doing everything they can to keep their family and the visiting one's safe. If you'd like, you can print out the pledge poster here for your front door.