TOMS RIVER, NJ – Is there going to be Halloween Trick or Treating in New Jersey this year? New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy says yes. Governor Murphy has announced the state’s guidelines for Halloween in 2020 and they are pretty much what you would have expected. Murphy gave a quick preview of what Halloween will look like ahead of the NJ Department of Health’s official guidelines being sent to towns across the state.
Murphy’s big no-no is the indoor Halloween party and he asks that candy givers find a socially distanced way to dispense treats. Costume masks will not substitute PPE and don’t “over touch” your candy.
“Yes, Halloween is on. First and foremost, the department is encouraging everyone to wear a mask that covers both the nose and mouth,” Murphy said. “And no, Pat [Calahan] that Jabba the Hut mask that you were considering is not a substitute. A costume mask does not count as it does not provide the necessary level of protection. The department’s guidance also strongly encourages that instead of placing treats directly in the bags of trick-or-treaters or filling communal bowls that multiple hands will reach into, that treats be arranged in such a way that they can be quickly and safely accessed without multiple pieces being touched.”
Murphy will also regulate the fall and Halloween industry including hayrides, corn mazes and other Halloween outdoor events.
“We are also strongly encouraging all Halloween activities to be outdoors, as we know that the biggest threats for viral spread exist indoors. And as always, parties are subject to both indoor and outdoor gathering limits. You may wish to dress as a knucklehead this Halloween, but we don’t want anyone to act like one. For Halloween activities such as hay rides and corn mazes, the department is also providing guidance for their safe operation as well,” Murphy said. “We know that in numerous communities, Halloween is more than just a fun activity, but a real tradition. We want to ensure that everyone has the chance to enjoy Halloween but we also want to ensure that everyone does that safely and responsibly.”