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Contra Costa County health officials discourage traditional Halloween celebrations amid pandemic

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BRENTWOOD, Calif. (KRON) — Halloween is just a few weeks away and trick or treating may have to look a bit different this year.

Contra Costa County health officials are discouraging the traditional Halloween celebrations we all know and love.

But they told KRON4’s Michelle Kingston that it doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate at all.

Traci Nelson’s family loves Halloween. Photos show just some of their costumes from the past few years.

But with restrictions in place this year because of coronavirus — she decided to get creative.

“It will be a little bit more work but it still gives them the opportunity to trick or treat,” Nelson said.

Instead of trick or treating in her neighborhood looking like this, she’s encouraging her neighbors to do a driveby celebration and put a table in the front yard with candy.

“That way they can go by they can say trick or treat if you are in the front yard they can still get their candy still celebrate,” Nelson said.

Contra Costa County health officials say traditional trick or treating is not a good idea, and discourages haunted houses and big parties, too.

“We are concerned that the traditional trick or treating is kind of risky during a COVID pandemic,” Contra Costa County Health Officer Dr. Chris Farnitano said. “You’ve got small children gathered together on front porches in front of front doors touching.”

High touch surfaces like door knobs and doorbells and candy jars and so all those types of activities pose a risk for COVID.

The recommendation from county health officials, though, are not stopping all families from still planning to head out like they always do on Halloween.

Lisa Lopez and her grandchildren are still going to trick or treat — but say they’ll sanitize their candy wrappers before digging in.

“They’ve been looking forward to this so much picking out their outfits and going out for a night and really having a lot of fun so that’s what we are going to do right?” she said.

County health officials did say you won’t get fined for trick or treating — there is no local or state ban, but just that they are discouraging you from participating.

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