Is Halloween canceled?

CityLab Daily

A grave dilemma: What's scarier: the potential spread of Covid-19 on Halloween or the cancellation of trick-or-treating? In the U.S., there hasn't been a consensus. With cases still rising, some cities are warning that the difficulty of enforcing social distancing among sugar-crazed kids going door-to-door for candy could exacerbate community spread. Yet when Los Angeles County tried last week to prohibit trick-or-treating, it faced fierce backlash from parents and revised its guidance to say that going door-to-door was merely "not recommended." Other cities, meanwhile, have emphatically assured their residents that there will be no ban on the quintessential Halloween tradition.

It's been a tough call in large part because it isn't just children's physical health that's at stake. Health experts also fear the mental toll on families if yet another shared experience is canceled because of the pandemic. "There has been a lot of things that have gone away for children," Hansa Bhargava, a pediatrician and a mom, tells me. She adds that if families must celebrate the holiday, they should consider less risky alternatives. Today on CityLab: Candy or Covid? Some Places Are Canceling Halloween

-Linda Poon

More on CityLab

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Vietnam's traditional "tube-houses" combine living and retail space, though new developments are replacing many. 
Africa's Diamond Capital Invests in a Futuristic Innovation Hub
The Icon Building, a $60-million anchor for a Silicon Valley-style technology incubator in Botswana, reflects the nation's mineral wealth — and its need to think beyond it. 
Work-Anywhere Shift Has Wealthy Tech Crowd Invading Lake Tahoe
The getaway spot is swarming with Bay Area residents who may stay for the long term.

What we're reading

  • Newly revealed USPS documents show an agency struggling to manage Trump, Amazon and the pandemic (Washington Post)
  • Police use of tear gas is now restricted in New Orleans, but what cases are the exceptions? (
  • Get ready for the great urban comeback (The Atlantic)
  • Women in suburbia don't seem too worried about its destruction (New York Times)
  • Seoul city seeks $4 million in damages from church over new COVID-19 outbreak (Reuters)
  • A pandemic upshot: Seniors are having second thoughts about where to live (Kaiser Health News)
  • That lockout you witnessed? It didn't happen. (Chicago Reader)


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