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In communities celebrating Halloween, it’s not just kids who enjoy it!

Lots of adults and teens as well as kids enjoy the treats, costumes, special gatherings, and scary stories that come with Halloween – as long as it feels ‘just-right’ scary and they have the power to leave or avoid things that feel TOO scary.

You can hear some of our Halloween safety tips for adults in our most recent interview for the Walk & Roll Live Podcast, “Halloween Safety for People with Disabilities” – featuring three of our amazing Safetypowers Ambassadors sharing strategies that ALL adults can use!

The following tips from Kidpower can help those who celebrate Halloween plan for more fun and fewer problems. These nine tips are for ALL ages and abilities – you can find child-centered, family-centered versions of these tips in Halloween Safety: The Kidpower Way! (in Spanish as Seguridad en Halloween – ¡Al estilo de Kidpower!)

  • Stay aware of children’s needs – which might mean taking off scary masks now and then, making things simpler, or separating adult celebrations from children’s celebrations.
  • Be aware of costume safety – costumes can make it harder to see, move, hear, and make yourself heard – and their dangly, extending pieces can be a problem if they are poking others, drifting near lit pumpkins, or tripping YOU!
  • Watch out for cars – and drive safely! – many drivers are distracted or rushing, you can expect kids to behave unpredictably, and the setting sun can impact visibility for everyone.
  • Keep cats and dogs inside and OUT of the action – because even calm animals who are normally very friendly can get upset because people are looking and acting differently.
  • Take extra precautions to avoid getting separated – whether you’re out with a group of friends your age or leading children, the fear that can happen when we get separated on Halloween is NOT fun, even if it’s brief!
  • Review stranger safety rules with kids – because on this day, children are encouraged to talk to strangers and take candy from them! This could be confusing – but a few words from their adults can clarify things and make these unusual activities consistent with your Kidpower safety rules.
  • Avoid a Halloween meltdown – because, let’s face it, even adults can feel overwhelmed on Halloween! Setting boundaries can help you end the evening feeling happy instead of miserable!
  • Make a plan about the treats – to take care of your own priorities for health and wellbeing as well as to avoid arguments, upset stomachs, and disappointment.
  • Plan for protection from infectious illness, including COVID – Stay home – and keep your family members home – if you or they have symptoms of a contagious disease. Ask others to do the same. Just like people have different boundaries around food and online activities, people have different boundaries related to other safety measures.

All of us at Kidpower want everyone celebrating Halloween to have a joyful time – so please forward this list or share the links with others in your neighborhood, school, or workplace!


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Published: October 26, 2023   |   Last Updated: October 26, 2023

Kidpower Founder and Executive Irene van der Zande is a master at teaching safety through stories and practices and at inspiring others to do the same. Her child protection and personal safety expertise has been featured by USA Today, CNN, Today Moms, the LA Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Publications include: cartoon-illustrated Kidpower Safety Comics and Kidpower Teaching Books curriculum; Bullying: What Adults Need to Know and Do to Keep Kids Safe; the Relationship Safety Skills Handbook for Teens and Adults; Earliest Teachable Moment: Personal Safety for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers; The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults: Personal Safety, Self-Protection, Confidence, and Advocacy for Young People, and the Amazon Best Seller Doing Right by Our Kids: Protecting Child Safety at All Levels.