With nine of 10 children celebrating Halloween, and nearly 75 percent of them going trick-or-treating door-to-door, it’s important to make sure kids are safe and sound when coming to your door. Travelers and other experts offer these suggestions to make sure your Halloween at home doesn’t turn out frightfully.
Have a happy haunted house
Homeowners should remove anything a kid can trip over from the front yard, porch and stairs leading to the front door. That means putting away lawn decorations, potted plants, extension cords, hoses, gardening equipment, bicycles, barbecue grills and anything else trick-or-treaters might run into, especially when they can’t see at night. And don’t forget to leave the front of the house well-lit and the lawn sprinklers turned off.
Corral your pets
Small children don’t need to feel threatened by a strange dog, or worse yet, knocked over by an excited pet because of scary visitors. So, make sure all your pets are on a leash, and if your dogs are prone to barking at strangers, put them in an inside room so they won’t see trick-or-treaters at the front door.
Decorate fright night safely
- Decorate outside with ghouls, goblins, mummies and tombstones in a way that they won’t tip over or blow away. Use fake – and safe – alternatives that can be bought in Halloween stores for props such as shovels and pitchforks.
- Don’t become Clark Griswold in “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” by overloading your electrical outlets with decorations. Instead, follow manufacturer’s instructions to keep damage and injury from happening.
- Make sure decorations are kept from sources of fire, such as candle-lit carved pumpkins on your front porch. Better yet, consider battery-operated candles. And don’t drape fabric or crepe paper over light bulbs or you might have a fire on your hands.
The trick to making Halloween a treat for those costumed candy collectors is to have a scary, but safe, haunted house for them to come to.