Dear Rye Brook Residents:
I hope you and your family are feeling well, and I apologize in advance for the length of this email.
They say that you never fully appreciate something until its gone. That should be the theme for 2020, the year of being told what not to do — traveling for work or vacations, going to professional sporting events, visiting extended family, etc. — and now it seems unfair to have to avoid the usual fun of Halloween.
The COVID-19 numbers for Rye Brook have been steadily increasing over the past few weeks. On the surface it seems very concerning, but the increase in positive cases is directly related to college-aged Rye Brook residents who are away at college, are testing positive for COVID-19 at their schools, and most importantly, recovering at their respective schools. Those positive tests are being reported to the NYS Department of Health by other states, which impacts our COVID numbers. If I see the number of positive cases rise for non-college aged people actually present in the Village, I will let you know.
That being said, as we are heading into the colder months, it is very important to keep up all of the social distancing and personal hygiene that we’ve been exercising since this pandemic began, including the use of hand sanitizer, and mask wearing over the mouth and nose.
Unfortunately, with COVID-19 still circulating, we have to re-think how we let our children celebrate Halloween this year. I read an article where one doctor was quoted as saying “Going house to house and allowing people to hand out individual candies increases the risk of Covid exposure exponentially, even in lower case areas”.
Let me share what guidance we have received to date:
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released guidelinesfor safe holiday celebrations. Unfortunately, participating in traditional trick-or-treating or “trunk-or-treating” are both identified by the CDC as “high-risk”.
- We are still waiting for the NYS Health Department to issue new guidance for Halloween.
In the Village of Rye Brook, we are not banning these activities, but unless trick-or-treating or ‘trunk-or-treating’ events are specifically prohibited by NYS, we will be asking individual families to decide what is best for them and their children.
How will trick or treaters know whether I am participating in trick or treating?
The Village of Rye Brook is seeking to reduce the risk of trick-or-treating by setting up a program whereby parents and trick-or-treaters will know whether or not a house is participating in trick-or-treating.
Click here if you will be handing out Halloween candy.
Click here if you will not be handing out Halloween candy.
Please print the page and tape it on your front door or window near the door.
If you plan on handing out Halloween candy:
Instead of placing treats directly in the bags of trick-or-treaters or filling communal bowls that multiple hands reach into, individually packaged candy should be arranged in a way that they can be easily grabbed without multiple pieces being touched. You may want to consider sitting outside your house and line up individually prepacked treat bags for families to take (please don’t forget to wear your own mask and regularly wash or sanitize your hands!).
Suggestions for parents accompanying our young trick-or treaters:
- Please avoid large groups or clustering at doorsteps or anywhere else.
- If possible, trick-or-treat with family members or those living in your household.
- Please carry small bottles of hand sanitizer and sanitize children’s hands frequently.
- Consider trick or treating during daylight hours or no later than dusk.
- Wear a protective cloth or mask that covers your nose and mouth. Most costume masks do not provide the necessary amount of protection.
- Do not wear a costume mask over a protective mask especially if the costume mask makes it difficult to breathe.
- Maintain a six-foot distance from any other groups of trick or treaters.
- You may want to wipe-down the treats or let them sit for a couple days before giving them to your child.
Looking for other ways to celebrate Halloween?
Drive-in Movie on Friday, October 30th:
Rye Brook Recreation is pleased to announce another drive-in movie is scheduled for Friday, October 30th at 7:00p.m. at the Kingsbrook Office Park (formerly Reckson), 1100 King Street. This event is possible due to another generous donation from the Blind Brook Community Coalition, who also sponsored the prior drive-in over the summer. The Coalition has selected the movie “Ghostbusters” (original version). The cost to attend will be $10 per vehicle and pre-registration is required. To register, please contact Rye Brook Recreation at (914) 939-3235 or you can register online here.
Register for the Halloween Pumpkin Decorating Contest!
Show off your creativity and send in a picture of your decorated pumpkins. You can carve it, paint it, cover it in stickers; anything goes! Submit your pumpkin pictures to Alex Marshall at firstname.lastname@example.org by Tuesday, October 27th and winners will be selected on Wednesday, October 28th.
Register for the Halloween House Decorating Contest! Prizes for Scariest and Most Creative Homes!
Rye Brook is having our first ever house decorating contest! Register your home via email to Liz Rotfeld at email@example.com by Friday, October 23rd, Judging will take place on Wednesday, October 28th and trophies will be given to the top 2 homes in each category!
Mayor, Village of Rye Brook