The CDC issued guidelines for the holidays, amid the raging coronavirus pandemic.
"Many traditional Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading viruses," the agency said in its posting. "There are several safer, alternative ways to participate in Halloween."
Low risk activities include carving pumpkins and decorating your home, outdoor scavenger hunts, virtual costume contests and hosting a movie night with household members.
"Doing a Halloween scavenger hunt where children are given lists of Halloween-themed things to look for while they walk outdoors from house to house admiring Halloween decorations at a distance," the CDC suggests, as a fun event for children.
Moderate risk things to do include so-called "one-way trick-or-treating" by exchanging goody bags placed at the end of a driveway or the edge of a yard, having an "open-air costume parade" where participants are at least 6-feet apart or attending an outdoor costume party where masks are worn and people social distance.
"A costume mask (such as for Halloween) is not a substitute for a cloth mask," the CDC said. "A costume mask should not be used unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers the mouth and nose and doesn't leave gaps."
The agency is discouraging the use of costume masks this year, saying they are not a substitute for cloth masks. It is also warning against wearing a costume mask over a protective cloth, pointing out it's dangerous because it might make it hard to breathe.
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