How to Celebrate Halloween 2020

5 Ways to Enjoy Halloween During COVID-19 Times

Halloween, like many aspects of our lives, will be different this year because of COVID-19. But with some creativity and proper physical distance, you still may be able to enjoy favorite activities and traditions in new or altered formats.

For example, you can experience spooky chills and thrills at walk- or drive-through haunted venues, enjoy the outdoors in pumpkin patches and corn mazes and, yes, taste Halloween-themed candy and chocolate — among other seasonal activities. Here is a list of things you can do while you maintain physical distancing this Halloween.

Please remember Washington’s Safe Start program may affect some openings and activities. Check an attraction’s website and/or call ahead before setting out for an adventure. Plus, use safety precautions and avoid crowds where physical distancing is difficult to maintain. Check out the CDC guidelines on Halloween activities.

Wrecked cat at Stalker Farms

Photo Courtesy of Stalker Farms

1. Walk or Drive Through Haunted Attractions

Although Seattle’s popular Georgetown Morgue Haunted House has axed its ghoulish live actors and monsters this year because of COVID-19 restrictions, the venue has retooled with a new self-guided, no-touch, walk-through spooky experience. Timed tickets are available for groups of five people or fewer to ensure physical distancing, and the attraction is operating at reduced capacity. Halloween masks and costumes are not allowed, but face coverings are required.

During the Stalker Farms Drive-Through Haunt in Snohomish, demonic scarecrows and creepy clowns act out scary scenes around your car as you drive from scene to scene. Organizers promise fire, chainsaws, “fog, loud sounds, strobe lights, creepy actors and props that buzz, hiss, growl, lurch and spit.”

Stalker Farms (pictured) also has a non-haunted nighttime corn maze activity available that can serve as a palate cleanser after the drive-through or as the main activity for those who would like a Halloween adventure that’s a bit less scary.

Micamoon Fright Flight

Photo Courtesy of Mica Moon Zip & Aerial Park

2. Play Outside With Distance

Pick-your-own pumpkin patches, day and night corn mazes, hay rides and other family-friendly activities run through Halloween at many family farms in the Olympia region, including Ashley Creek Farms, Hunter Family Farm, Rutledge Corn Maze and Schilter Family Farm.

Zombie paintball and the live pig and duck races at Maris Farms in Buckley are canceled this year because of COVID-19 restrictions, but the 5-acre corn maze, the 5-acre pumpkin patch, the wagon rides and the Haunted Woods walk past 25 creepy scenes are among a wide variety of activities offered this year.

In Puyallup, Spooner Farms has a harvest festival running through October, with a pumpkin patch, corn maze, farm animals, roasted corn and more. At Picha Farms, the Kraken trivia-themed 5-acre corn maze and hay rides are complemented by a cool pumpkin slingshot that can score guests discounts on pumpkin purchases.

In Spokane, evening Fright Flights through the haunted woods of the Dark Canyons section of Mica Moon Zip Tours & Aerial Park (pictured) are offered throughout October, with bonus zip-or-treat and trek-or-treat activities just for kids.

Please remember to keep physical distancing and avoid crowds.

Wall of Scary Faces

Photo Courtesy of MoPOP Museum

3. Scream for Horror Movies

Seattle’s Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP) has an online list of 100 Horror Films to Watch Before You Die. Inside the museum, you can see more than 50 costumes and props from scary TV shows and films, including “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” “Friday the 13th” and “Pet Sematary” in the Scared to Death: The Thrill of Horror Film exhibition.

The October line-up at the Spokane Drive-In at the Fairgrounds also includes some scary movies, including “Get Out” on October 16 and “Hocus Pocus” on October 17. Additional October drive-in features are to be added.

Halloween-themed Theo chocolate

Photo Courtesy of Theo Chocolate

4. Taste Candy and Chocolate

What’s Halloween without candy? Instead of snacking on the candy you usually buy for trick-or-treaters, you can tour area candy factories in person or virtually. The Seattle Chocolate Company flagship store in Tukwila is open and factory tours are available by appointment. Seasonal truffle bar flavors include pumpkin spice, apple pie a la mode, and peanut butter pretzel.

The flagship Theo Chocolate store in Seattle’s Fremont neighborhood is open, with treats such as chocolate spiders, chocolate coffins and chocolate tombstones. The company’s factory tours are on hiatus, but a live Virtual Chocolate Tasting Class that includes a generous tasting kit is available.

Winchester Mystery House

Photo Courtesy of Winchester Mystery House

5. Celebrate Virtually

Virtual events are perfect for the Halloween season. The bizarre and storied Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California, offers an immersive 360-degree virtual tour and a 41-minute video access tour (prices vary). And D23, the Official Disney Fan Club will be broadcasting a virtual Halloween Mousequerade Costume Contest on October 31 at 2 p.m. Pacific Time on its Facebook and YouTube channels.

–Written by Harriet Baskas
–Tip Image by iStock

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