Trick or Treating is Canceled – Here’s How We’re Doing Halloween This Year Instead

Inside: Trick or treating is canceled in our town this year so we need to get a little creative to make this holiday special. You too? Here’s how we’re doing Halloween this year to give you some ideas!


I was holding my breath for this one, keeping tabs on the parent Facebook pages, checking the town website, peppering passersbys with questions. Well, basically just one question.

What’s going on with trick or treating this year?

Trick or treating is an outside activity and we could all wear masks so there were a couple check boxes in the yes column. But it’s also little kids touching lots of stuff so that was a nope. Maybe some Rube Goldberg machines or bags of candy on a table could work though?

But alas, not so much. Every town is making their own call, and our board of health decided that trick or treating would be canceled this year so we had a couple of choices. Throw a giant tantrum about it on Facebook or get creative. For the sake of our four and five-year-olds, we chose to get creative.

Here’s how we’re doing Halloween this year, which to be fair, the verdict is still out on. Will the kids love it or revolt? Will it be a Halloween to remember or forget? Will I regret agreeing to create a game called “Toss Your Cookies”? Unclear. But we’ll give it the old college try!

Did your town cancel trick or treating? Try these Halloween ideas instead.

Halloween “Party”

With Halloween on a Saturday this year, it was a great time to have Halloween be a day-long celebration. And despite 2020’s best efforts, it still will be!

Last year, we had one friend from Norah’s school join us for trick or treating around the neighborhood and we’re excited to have her back this year for a different kind of Halloween.

Our little group of four adults and three kids will be putting on costumes (our family may or may not have matching superhero getups…), getting pizza, eating Halloween cupcakes, and rocking out to the Monster Mash. The house is getting decorated, to the best of my ability, and we’re going to make the most of this.

A couple of the decorations the kids picked out are horrifying though and this one keeps turning on randomly so I think the house is possessed now. So there’s that…

Halloween Decorations

Halloween Games

For our little Halloween party we have some games lined up for the afternoon.

Bobbing for Apples

To make this traditional Halloween party game germ friendly, the three kids are going to get their own buckets. Sharing is not caring in this scenario.

Pin the Nose on the Pumpkin

Someone please remind me not to recycle all of the cardboard boxes in the garage right now because I am making a Pin the Nose on the Pumpkin out of one of them with some paint, scissors, tape, and a hopeful heart.

Donut on a String

This is the game my kids are most excited for. DONUTS!

I need to figure out how to rig up a string across the deck for this, suggestions welome. And Jack has requested his donut to be a Boston Cream so I don’t really think he understands the game.

Toss Your Cookies

Jack came up with this game and I think it’s just tossing mini cookies into buckets like a carnival game. I don’t think he knows that “toss your cookies” means to barf, but maybe?


You’ve Been BOOed

Since I already packed up tiny bags of candy with Halloween temporary tattoos, candy, and pencils, we’re not going to let that half-hour go to waste.

Last year, a couple of friends BOOed us by leaving little treats at our front door with a “You’ve been BOOed” message in the week leading up to Halloween.

This year we’ll make the rounds to a few doorsteps to ding, dong, leave a nice little gift, and ditch.

Halloween Treat Bags

Candy Hunt

Easter, meet Halloween. Halloween, Easter!

Our kids love searching for Easter eggs so Halloween is going to be getting an Easter bunny spin this year. Halloween candy will be scattered all over the yard and the kids will each get a bucket and their running sneakers.

They better hurry though because I’ve seen Glen take down some Snickers bars and if he finds them first he will NOT hold back.


Let’s Get Crafty

In anticipation of trick or treating possibly being canceled, we bought a silly amount of pumpkins at the patch this year. There is no need for six pumpkins. One pumpkin, maybe two pumpkins, not six.

Yet here we are with six pumpkins because Norah is a good solider and didn’t want to leave any vegetable behind.

With those six pumpkins comes some good crafting opportunities though. We’ve carved two, painted the other two, and are leaving the last two for Halloween day. Maybe more carving, maybe more painting? Unclear, but it’s going to add to the festivities.


In Home Trick or Treating

Last but not least, we’re still going to pull off some actual trick or treating. Kind of.

We’ll have four adults on hand and there are four different doors to our house/garage. Each adult is going to take a door with some candy and then the three kids will walk around the outside of the house and knock on the doors to trick or treat.

I am hopeful they will get a kick out of this, but if not adults will have some quiet time with the candy for a few minutes and that’s a win too.


Happy Halloween 2020!

Halloween this year is going to be different, that’s for sure. What’s NOT different about 2020 though?

Our creativity has been pushed to the max this year, but we’re still making it happen. Our stamina has been stretched like a Stretch Armstrong doll this year, but we’re still going.

So parents, I know this is hard, but you’re doing great. If these ideas helped you think of some ways to salvage Halloween, awesome. If you’re planning on cuddling in for a movie marathon, that’s awesome too. And if you’re going to skip Halloween altogether this year and put up your Christmas tree on October 31, more power to you! Whatever works!

Above all, be safe and have fun. We’ll get through this, socially distanced, but together.



Read More Halloween Posts:

Easy Halloween Craft for Kids – Potato Pumpkin Stamp

No-Sew Halloween Costume for Kids and Kids at Heart


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