Spiking COVID-19 cases has families torn on Halloween celebrations

Coronavirus New Mexico

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Many New Mexicans received an emergency alert from the state Friday, reminding us that COVID-19 is still a huge threat and to stay home for Halloween. Some neighborhoods are doing the same, telling trick-or-treaters to keep out, while others are split on the idea of a stay at home Halloween.

Signs that say, “COVID Stole Halloween, no Trick or Treating,” are popping up in a downtown neighborhood near 8th and Mountain. “It’s definitely sad not to see that this year,” said Stephen Miller, a Downtown Albuquerque resident. “It’s important we stay safe,” said Miller.

Miller says he’s lived in the downtown neighborhood for years and they typically get upwards of 1,000 trick or treaters. Even though he won’t be handing out candy, he and his family still decorated their home so people can drive through and enjoy the decorations.

Not everyone is giving up the tradition. A family in Northeast Heights says they celebrate every year and don’t plan on skipping it this year. Instead, they say they’re offering a “COVID-Safe” alternative to door-to-door trick or treating. They’re setting up a table at the end of the driveway so kids can stop by in small groups and pick up pre-packed candy bags.

“We wipe the tables, put fresh candy back out, we’ll be wearing masks and gloves,” said Melissa Redenshek. Redenshek says they’ve created more than 100 candy bags, stuffed with candy donated by other neighbors.

People can also check Next Door’s “Treat Map,” for more trick or treating alternatives like COVID-safe costume parades, and scary decorations. The town of Edgewood is having a drive-boo, families are encouraged to decorate their vehicles, wear costumes and celebrate from the safety of their cars.

This map shows locations of COVID-19 safe Halloween activities around New Mexico

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