BIA promotes Halloween promenade
The Creemore BIA management board has decided to proceed with Halloween festivities, keeping in mind health protocols and guidelines.
The board hashed out details of how to handle Halloween and Christmas at its Oct. 13 meeting, with the intention of carrying on the beloved community traditions in a safe manner, due to the pandemic.
The BIA is inviting the business community to support a Halloween Promenade, in whatever way they feel comfortable. That could include décor, and handing out treats in innovative ways.
Businesses are encouraged to decorate their shop windows and be open from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 31.
In his weekly update, Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit medical officer of Health Dr. Charles Gardiner said the community can enjoy Halloween in a safe manner. Trick or treaters should stick to their own household groups as they travel around the neighbourhood. Anyone who is ill should not participate, and anyone who feels vulnerable can always opt out. All participants should be wearing proper masks.
Gardiner said caution should be taken, as there is a large increase in cases of COVID-19 over the past week.
We are very much on the incline provincially, said Gardner, including in Simcoe Muskoka.
“It’s possible these recommendations could change, depending on the epidemiology – depending on the amount of transmission and circulation of the virus, the level of activity. There may be changes coming from the province with regards to the approach to Halloween this year,” he said.
In Simcoe-Muskoka, the health unit is reporting 80 new cases this week, bringing the total number of active cases to 128. Five people are in hospital and there have been additional deaths, bringing the total to 43 for the region.
Ten public schools in Simcoe County have a single case, including Collingwood Collegiate Institute, with no evidence of spread within the school.
How to have a safe and happy Halloween
• Stay home if feeling ill or have mild symptoms.
• Only go out with members of your direct household.
• Only trick or treat outside.
• Both trick or treaters and people handing out candy should wear a face covering. A costume mask is not a substitute for a face covering and should not be worn over a face covering as it may make it difficult to breathe. Consider building the face covering into the costume.
• Do not congregate or linger at doorsteps. Line up two metres (6 feet) apart if waiting.
• Avoid high-touch surfaces and objects.
• Whether collecting or handing out treats, wash your hands often and thoroughly or use hand sanitizer.
• Do not leave treats in a bucket or bowl for children to grab. Consider using tongs to hand out treats.