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Still ways to plan Halloween fun

Submitted Photo Randy and Tammy Hiatt of Garrison bought the town’s “Halloween House” in 2015 and decorate their yard every Halloween to keep up with the tradition set by the home’s previous owner.

Halloween during a coronavirus pandemic doesn’t have to mean no fun or no trick or treating for some area residents.

Donna Jo Lipp, a retired teacher who lives in McClusky, loves Halloween and in a typical year might have as many as 100 trick or treaters at her house.

“”I’ve always dressed up for for the Halloween visitors,” she said in a Facebook message. “I didn’t even miss the year my son was born. I wasn’t feeling great, but he waited for November 1st so I could hand out treats.”

This year, like everyone else, she is concerned about catching the coronavirus and her husband has health concerns that make her especially worried. This year, like everyone else, she is worried about the coronavirus.

But that doesn’t mean Lipp is giving up on Halloween.

“I’m making a candy chute to deliver treats to our visitors,” she said. “… A candy chute will allow me to hand out treats without the kids getting close to our door. I’m using a 6 feet by 3 inch PVC pipe. I’m decorating it with creepy cloth (cheese cloth) and spiders, lights, etc. to make it extra fun. The chute will be taped or tied to the step railing. I’ll drop the candy bar at the top and it will slide into the trick or treater’s bag at the bottom.”

Lipp found the idea for her Halloween candy chute on the website Pinterest. She said she decided to use a couple of the models she found there as inspiration for her own hand-made candy chute.

“I’ll change it up and make it my own,” she said.

She put a candy chute as a dry run on Tuesday but said she plans to add more “creepy cloth” to the railing and a banister at the top of her step.

“The chute works great,” said Lipp. “The candy bar shoots out the end like a scared cat on Halloween night.”

Lipp plans to build her final version on Friday so it won’t be exposed to the weather too long before the kids start arriving.

The candy chute idea follows guidelines for trick or treating recommended this year by the Center for Disease Control. The CDC advises avoiding direct contact with trick or treaters and giving treats outdoors if possible. Some people might also set up a station outdoors with individually bagged treats for kids to take.

The CDC also advises that people make cloth masks a part of their costumes and advised that a costume mask can’t be a substitute for a cloth mask.

People are advised to stay six feet apart at Halloween events.

Some public events in the Minot area have been canceled or had to be modified due to the coronavirus. One public event still on is Boo at the Zoo at the Roosevelt Park Zoo, which will be held Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. People will be able to drive through the zoo and treat bags will be provided to kids at the event. The event will be $5 per car.

Other people in the reading area have decorated their yards with Halloween ghosts or skeletons, black cats or carved pumpkins and are coming up with new, creative ways to celebrate this year.

Tammy Hiatt from Garrison has all sorts of creative decorations in her yard.

“The reason we try to decorate every year is because when we moved to Garrison in 2015 we were told we bought Garrison’s Halloween house,” she said in a Facebook message. “The previous owner loved Halloween and would go all out. He passed several years ago but often children come back and still ask for him. We still try to keep the tradition alive and have well over 100 trick or treaters each year.”

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