PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - With fall officially here and the holiday season right around the corner, many Americans are left wondering how to celebrate as COVID-19 still grips the nation.
Health experts are weighing in on Halloween and advising against trick-or-treating, costume parties and haunted houses.
The CDC issued new guidance that discourages “high-risk” activities that can spread COVID-19 and other viruses.
FOX 12 spoke with a man who said he plans to keep all his festivities this year low-key.
“A lot of people around makes me a bit uneasy,” KC Fong said. “No Friendsgiving, no Halloween parties, not for me.”
Another Portland resident said he plans to have plenty of candy for the hundreds of trick-or-treaters who typically descend on his neighborhood.
“We’ll have candy out,” Norm Carlson said. “I just sit on the front porch for two hours, kids come up sometimes 50 at a time – so I’m not sure what’s going to happen.”
The uncertainty is making it tough for businesses that cater to everything spooky.
Staff at Portland party store, Lippman Co., were looking forward to Halloween making a rare weekend appearance.
“The whole industry has been waiting for this Saturday,” said store manager, Josh Good. “And then, this year happened – it’s definitely not going to be what people wanted.”
“I don’t think the kid business will be as big, with trick-or-treating such a question, but I think adults are still going to have small to large parties,” Good added.
Good said he anticipates business will still be good overall.
“I still think it’s going to be busy,” Good said. “We’ve talked to customers who are still throwing semi-big parties – which is a little scary, but I know there’s going to be those people who want to come in and shop still.”
Some customers told FOX 12 they plan on going all out for Halloween decoration.
“I imagine we’ll sell a lot of decoration for yards and houses,” Good said.
Dr. Anh Nguyen, the senior medical director for urgent care at Providence, said creativity with safety in mind is encouraged.
“You can do a pumpkin carving party,” Nguyen said. “If you’re going to do it with just your family you can do it indoors, if you’re going to do it with friends you can do it outdoors. You can do a Halloween movie party outside with friends, or you can do a Halloween costume party parade.”
The CDC cautions that wearing a Halloween mask will not help protect you from COVID-19 like an approved mask can.
Want to travel for Thanksgiving or Christmas? Nguyen discourages flying but says it should be fine to drive for the holidays if you and your various family members self-quarantine for two weeks before getting together.
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