How Did State High Make the Best of Halloween in the Midst of a Pandemic?


Photo Courtesy of Allison Tocmo

Jack-O-Lanterns carved by State High students in State College Pennsylvania on Nov. 1, 2020. Some students decided to stay in on Halloween and do activities like pumpkin carving to avoid the risk of COVID-19.

Ethan Jones, News Editorial Assistant

With the risk of COVID-19 still very apparent in Centre County, traditional Halloween plans had to be adapted for safety. On Sunday, Nov. 1, State College held its official trick-or-treat night, but many across the community spent their nights much differently. While some still chose to trick-or-treat and party as usual, others chose to spend their night more cautiously: some by staying in entirely, and some by modifying their trick-or-treating plans to be safe and responsible.

“I just kinda stayed in and watched horror movies. My family put out candy but because there weren’t a lot of tricks-or-treaters I ended up eating most of it,” sophomore Owen Briscoe said. “I definitely ruled out any parties or anything because that just seems unsafe right now.” 

Briscoe wasn’t the only student who felt leaving the house would be harmful. Sophomores Allison Tocmo and Jedidiah Yang shared that sentiment.

“Nobody in my neighborhood really did anything,” Yang said. “I think it [was] mostly out of consideration-it’s too much of a risk to have people out in public like that.” 

Tocmo agreed: “For as long as we’ve had the virus in the U.S, I’ve been pretty scared of going out into public spaces and crowds. Halloween wasn’t any different, so I stayed inside,” she said. 

While some students clearly felt staying inside was the best option, other State High students like sophomore Sage Newman tried to make the best of trick-or-treating while still being safe. 

“My family and two other families did a socially distanced bike trick or treat,” Newman said. “We all dressed up and then biked to each house and got a little bag of candy. We were all really spread out. We wore our masks all the time unless we needed a break, and then we distanced ourselves from each other and got water.” 

Newman’s night was spent taking precautions, and she went out on Saturday to avoid the rush of trick-or-treaters the next night. 

While COVID-19 posed a challenge for celebration, it didn’t eliminate the possibility, as many still found ways to enjoy the holiday, whether it was through socially distanced trick-or-treating or just relaxing at home. With Thanksgiving and Christmas right around the corner, students will have to continue to adhere to COVID-19 guidelines while getting in the holiday spirit.