This is a guest post by Rachel Burke, student and Clise Etiquette intern.
On the one night of the year when we encourage our children to talk to strangers and accept candy from them, parents need to be on top of all the do’s and don’ts for this spooky day. Most importantly, remember to use safety and caution while going door to door. If you choose to celebrate Halloween, here are some helpful tips to make the evening go as smoothly as possible, both for parents and trick-or-treaters.
-Remember that trick-or-treating is designed for children twelve and younger. Always accompany your very young children when going door to door, no matter how safe you believe your neighborhood to be.
-If you don’t live in a kid-friendly neighborhood, there are still options. Feel free to go door to door in a friend’s neighborhood, or participate in your communities’ Halloween celebration.
-Many small businesses are set-up for trick-or-treaters during business hours. This is a great option for those of you who want to celebrate during daylight, or who have small children.
-As a giver, it is important to give candy to all people who knock on your door in costume, whether they are eight or eighteen years old. It is not your responsibility to discipline teenagers who go out trick-or-treating by not offering them candy.
-These days, most parents will not allow their children to eat homemade goods picked up on Halloween night. Make sure you are handing out pre-packaged candies.
-If your home’s outdoor lights are on from dusk to 8:00 p.m., kids of all ages will come knocking on your door for candy. If you prefer not to give out treats, keep your lights off and people will understand not to ring your doorbell.
-If you do want to participate in your neighborhood’s Halloween fun, leave your lights on and greet trick-or-treaters with a cheerful “Happy Halloween!”
-Although October 31st is a day to dress up, make sure that costumes are age-appropriate and not too scary for other children.
-Remind your little ghosts and goblins to smile, say, “trick-or-treat!” and “thank you” and, to only take one or two pieces of candy.