Like many things in 2020, Halloween is on track to look much different this year. The novel coronavirus is still spreading in the U.S., and parents may be hesitant to let their kids collect candy from their neighbors in person. Some municipalities have already canceled the annual tradition or placed restrictions on it. For families that do plan to go trick-or-treating this year, planning ahead is a must. That's why Hershey's released a map designed to help kids trick-or-treat safely during the COVID-19 pandemic, iHeartRADIO reports.
Hershey's interactive map, now live at halloween2020.com, displays geographic COVID-19 data from the Harvard Global Health Institute. Counties marked red have a seen a high level of daily cases per 100,000 residents, and are deemed high risk. Green is the lowest risk level on the color-coded map.
After determining the COVID-19 risk in their community, families can use suggestions from Hershey's to plan their Halloween festivities. The candy company lists potential activities that are appropriate for each of the four risk levels. Trick-or-treating (while adhering to the CDC's social distancing guidelines) is recommended for green and yellow zones. For families in the orange zone, drive-by trick-or-treating through the neighborhood is one safer option. Planning Halloween activities at home with household members or a small group of close friends, or virtually over Zoom, is recommended for families in the red zone.
The origins of trick-or-treating date back to the Celtic festival Samhain, and the practice has gone through some dramatic changes over the centuries. You can read more about the history of trick-or-treating here.