Even with a tougher economy, people are spending freely for the 2014 Halloween season. Costumes, including baby and pet costumes, are flying off the shelves, and that means one thing: children and animals roaming the streets next weekend, collecting candy and other goodies from local neighborhoods.
While the Greater Alton area offers a safer, more intimate environment for Halloween activities, both parents and children should stay alert and aware when it comes to speeding cars, suspicious strangers, and unwrapped candy. Below are a few basic tips to help keep the spookiest season spooky, not scary.
• Pay attention to traffic, obey crosswalks, and don’t text and walk. FOR ADULTS, pay attention to your surroundings while driving those nights; if a child darts in front of your car, make sure you have allowed enough time to avoid a tragic accident.
• Ensure that all children under the age of 13 are accompanied by an adult.
• Choose costumes with light colors. Make sure costumes do not have sharp edges such as swords, horns, etc. Reflective tape and glow-in-the-dark accessories also can make a child visible from 100 feet or more.
• Decorative contact lenses should never be worn unless under the supervision of an eye care professional.
• Make sure smaller children know how to dial 9-1-1 in any type of emergency.
• Do not enter a stranger’s home. If candy is not offered from the safety of the front porch, go on to the next house.
• If a house is dark or does not have a porch light on, go on to the next house.
• Parents, make sure your children’s Halloween candy is carefully inspected on their return home. To cut down on the temptation to sample while trick-or-treating, send them out following a healthy meal and maybe a snack to satisfy the sweet tooth.
With just a few common-sense precautions, adults can make sure the kids can have a fun, safe, healthy and happy Halloween. Local law enforcement has designated specific dates and times for trick-or-treating in their municipalities, and encourages residents to adhere to these schedules:
- Godfrey – 6-8 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31
- Alton – 6-8 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31
- East Alton – 5-8 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31
- Wood River – 6-8 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31
- Roxana – 6-8 p.m. Oct. 31
- Bethalto – dusk until 9 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31
For more information, contact your local city hall or law enforcement.