City of Racine permits trick-or-treating, warns it’s not safe

The City of Racine Public Health Department has decided to permit trick-or-treating this year from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 31. However, they warn that the public should not assume it is a safe event, and that they agree with the recommendation from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) that the best advice is to not participate in trick-or-treating this year.

The Public Health Department has also issued guidance for those residents in the City who choose to participate in Halloween events this year. 

“I agree with DHS that the best course of action would be to not have trick-or-treating this year. After every holiday we continue to see spikes in cases because people simply don’t take the proper precautions to stay safe. However, given that all of our neighboring communities, except one, have scheduled Halloween as usual, our fear is that City residents will simply go to neighboring villages where COVID-19 is actually more prevalent and could be put at greater risk,” said Dottie-Kay Bowersox, Public Health Administrator for the City of Racine. 

“I want to clear, not participating in trick-or-treating or in-person Halloween events is the safest thing to do. We continue to see spikes in cases after every holiday. It’s a tough decision parents have to make, but I am going to lead by example. My children will not be trick-or-treating this year. However, if you choose to participate, please follow the Health Departments' guidance," said Mayor Cory Mason. 

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The City of Racine Public Health Department issued a series of guidelines for trick-or-treating this year which include: 

  • All adults and children should be masked (spooky or otherwise) indoors and outside 
  • Candy should be handed out by one masked individual (children should not reach into bowls), and use hand hygiene between trick-or-treaters 
  • Families collecting candy should put their collected candy aside for at least 72 hours as an additional precaution 
  • Avoid in-person haunted houses, large public gathers, in-person indoor parties, happy hours or socializing at bars 
  • Stay within your own neighborhood/municipality, avoid traveling to others 
  • Stay home if you are sick or have COVID-19 symptoms 
  • Social distance at least 6 feet apart, indoors and outdoors, from non-household members 
  • Sanitize your hands frequently – after covering a cough or sneeze, touching your mask, or collecting candy  

Residents who have additional questions or concerns can contact the City of Racine Public Health Department at 262-636-9201 or email