The Covid pandemic has upended a lot of traditions this year but in "these parts" it's not touching Halloween trick-or-treating, if grown-ups have anything to say about it.
Most municipalities in eastern Niagara County have set sanctioned trick-or-treating hours for Saturday. Those who hand out the treats are encouraged to get in the 2020 Halloween spirit and mask-up themselves.
In Lockport, trick-or-treating hours are 4 to 7 p.m. The city and the town adopted the same guidelines, which include: Trick-or-treaters should stay in their own neighborhood and wear a Covid-combatting face mask and gloves; and distributors of treats should mask up and maintain distance from trick-or-treaters as much as possible.
In Newfane, trick-or-treating hours are 4 to 7 p.m. and households can signal participation by leaving their porch lights on. Town Clerk Mildred Kramp recommended everyone wear masks and gloves, both children and adults.
“We’re leaving it up to the parents if they want the children to go, but we don’t have any restrictions,” she said. “I would think they’d wear a mask. I’m going to have gloves and mask on.”
In Royalton, the town board decided to endorse door-to-door trick-or-treating from 4 to 8 p.m. “The kids have been locked in their houses for a long time,” Town Clerk Marie Little said. “We’re not going to tell people exactly what to do, but use common sense.” Meaning: Mask up, don gloves and sanitize hands throughout the evening.
In the village of Middleport, trick-or-treating hours are 5 to 7 p.m. and lights on the porch will signify which households are participating. Village Clerk Lisa VanBuren encouraged a mask and gloves for whoever's handing out the treats. “The trick-or-treaters should all be wearing a mask as well,” she said. “The village wants everyone to be safe, healthy and enjoy the evening.”
In Barker, trick-or-treating hours are 5 to 7:30 p.m. Village Clerk Amanda Detschner said there are no restrictions, and she also recommended that the people handing out candy don masks and try to distance themselves however they feel comfortable.
“Maybe put candy on a table by the road,” she suggested.
Also on Saturday, several community-based Halloween gatherings are planned for youths.
Party at Rainbow Skateland: Local business owners including Joe Taylor of JT's Mixed Martial Arts are sponsoring a Halloween party at Skateland, 1109 Lincoln Ave., from 7:30 to 10 p.m. The first 100 teens to show up will be admitted free of charge. Pop and pizza will be served. If more than 100 show up, accommodations will be made to get them in at no charge as well, according to Taylor. Masks are required.
Trunk-or-treat in Johnson Creek: Drive-through "trunk-or-treating" will take place from 2 to 3:30 p.m. (or until all the candy's gone) at Community Fellowship Church, Johnson Creek and Ridge roads. There's no need for anyone to get out of their vehicle; treat bags will be delivered to the children. For more information, call (716) 628-1275.
Trunk-or-treat in Barker: The local Lions Club's annual Halloween party at Barker Central School has been replaced with a trunk-or-treat event at the club's building on Main Street this year. Community members are invited to distribute candy to students trunk-or-treat style in front of the building. Decoration of vehicles is encouraged. For more information, email Roar@BarkerLion.org or call (716) 778-7001.