Pictures: Virus won’t stop good spirits at Halloween in Cork!

Pictures: Virus won’t stop good spirits at Halloween in Cork!

Pupils from Scoil an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown get ready for Halloween before heading into school.

CORONAVIRUS means a very different Halloween this year.
But, if you get your family’s brains working and colla-BOO-rate you can still have a frightfully fun time.

While trick or treating traditions are nice, they’re not the only great thing about the scariest night of the year.

Here’s how you can have Halloween at home while keeping all of the Halloween spirit.

1. It’s okay to be sad but think about Halloween’s other highlights, the things your family really enjoy. Is it the sweets? The costumes? Being spooked and scared? Ask your kids what they love and what their Halloween goals are. (It’s the sweets, isn’t it.)

Pupils from Scoil an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown get ready for Halloween before heading into school.
Pupils from Scoil an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown get ready for Halloween before heading into school.

2. Define and develop ideas around those goals  — make an overall plan with your household to deliver what they enjoy most, and set their expectations for that rather than dwelling on what you usually do.

3. Don’t forget to set a budget as well as expectations unless you want to be gasping in horror at your bank balance in November! Make a list of needed items and a timeline so you’re not rushing about last-minute when you should be having fun.

4. Let the kids flesh out their ideas. Don’t micro-manage, let them have a go at creating their own Halloween traditions, decorations, tricks and treats.

5. Then set your little monsters to work! Delegation doesn’t just save you effort, research says kids are more motivated when they have a choice and work on things they find meaningful.

6. Check-in occasionally and manage things — are the team on track to meet the goals?

Keep an eyeball on your schedule and cost to make sure they’re not going out the haunted house window but, other than that, have fun!

Help your family to pick a few smaller ideas rather than one big one; that way if something falls flat, another bit is bound to be more spooktacular.

Work with your minions to keep them on track, remember why you’re doing this, and try to enjoy the build-up as well as the event.

Good luck bringing your ghastly dreams to life!

Some of our ideas include:

1. a torchlight sweet search around our haunted home;

2. some traditionally terrifying Halloween games (remember the Mummy’s tomb?);

3. video calling friends to see their creepy costumes;

4. a petrifying parade around our neighbourhood, with a sweet for every spooked-out house spotted; and

5. a torchlight disco — Stevie G will be streaming tunes from pm on Twitch (https://www.twitch.tv/steviegcork) — and spooky movie to round off the night.

You don’t need to leave your home: trick or treat around the different rooms; make pop-up cards to scare Nana and Grandad; or bake some creepy Halloween treats.

Pupils from Scoil an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown get ready for Halloween before heading into school.
Pupils from Scoil an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown get ready for Halloween before heading into school.

Staying in is easy and completely corona-safe.

If you want to go out, consider coordinating with some neighbours.

On one Dublin street, everyone will ‘hide’ a pumpkin in their front garden, so local kids can walk around playing hide-and-spook.

When they spot the pumpkin their parent gives them sweets, while the householders wave from behind their windows.

If you hop online, you’ll find even more to consider: visit the Shandon footbridge skeleton boat, take part in a drive-by parade, and there are online festivals and workshops too.

So hopefully your Halloween is set up to be a howling success!

Enjoy the night and get their feedback after.

What did they really enjoy? What was a bit more effort than fun? Are ghosts real? Is there any such thing as too many sweets? (My kids are screaming there isn’t, the little monsters.)

Have a happy and safe Halloween!

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