Halloween Trick or Treat City hours for the City of North Adams will be held Saturday, October 31, 2020, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m.
Over the past six months we have canceled, postponed, scaled back, or reimagined the majority of community events in North Adams in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Each of these decisions made in the interest of public health and safety has been necessary, and I know that many of these changes also been disappointing and difficult for our residents and visitors. I didn’t want to add Halloween to the list of cancellations, especially since our case counts right now show that North Adams residents have done such an amazing job of slowing the spread of COVID-19. So, my team and I thought long and hard about how we could provide a framework to help make Trick or Treat as safe as possible. We reviewed guidance from the Centers from Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) and came up with what we are calling our GHOST Protocol – recommendations for a fun and safe Halloween.
North Adams mayor Tom Bernard
The guidelines include the following:
G Grab and Go Only
Participating residents should hand out treats in goodie bags or other contactless ways.
H Have Fun
This should need no explanation!
O Only Visit Participating Houses
Traditionally people leave on a light or decorate to signal they are participating; trick or treaters should respect those who choose not to participate
S Stay Close to Home
Participants should remain in a compact, walkable neighborhood as much as possible.
T Take Your Mask
As with any public activity, trick or treaters should wear a cloth face covering to protect themselves and those with whom they come in contact; following CDC guidance trick or treaters should not wear a costume mask over their cloth face covering.
While the city supports Trick or Treat activities during the announced hours, the following activities are not recommended during the Halloween season:
• “Trunk or Treat” events where children go from car to car instead of door to door to receive treats are not recommended.
• Gatherings or parties with non-household members are not recommended even if they are conducted outdoors.
• Carnivals, festivals, live entertainments, and haunted house attractions are not recommended.
In accordance with CDC and Massachusetts Department of Public Health guidelines the city also asks those participating in Trick or Treat activities to:
• Observe good hand hygiene, including hand washing and use of alcohol-based sanitizers with at least 60% alcohol. Carry hand sanitizer and use it often, especially after coming into contact with frequently touched surfaces and before eating candy;
• Stay home and refrain from Halloween activities, including handing out Halloween treats, if they feel unwell, have tested positive for COVID-19 or been exposed to someone with COVID-19, or have traveled to or from a higher risk state in the two weeks prior to Halloween; and
• Maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet of physical distance from all other participants who are not members of the same household.
The CDC website also offers suggestions for other lower-risk alternatives to participate in Halloween.
"I know nothing says ‘fun’ like added rules and regulations,” Mayor Bernard joked. “And I want to be clear that if we experience a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases we might need to cancel Trick or Treat. For now, though, I hope our young people are looking forward to dressing up for Halloween, and I know I can’t wait to see all the great costumes in my neighborhood, in a safe and socially distanced way of course.”
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Live 95.9 reached out to City of Pittsfield officials earlier this week requesting information on the state Trick or Treat in the county's other city. A representative of the Mayor's office said they planned to release information pertaining to Halloween related activities this week, but at the time of publication, none had been provided. We will update the article once more information is known. The city's website lists 2020's Halloween parade as canceled.