EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Despite a pandemic, people are still going out and buying spooky masks for Halloween.
However, health department officials say these masks aren’t going to cut it when talking safety.
The COVID-19 pandemic might be changing the way people celebrate Halloween festivities this year, but not necessarily how they might dress up.
“Wear your mask when you’re around other people, try to social distance from people outside of your social bubble, outside of your family that you’re normally around,” Joe Gries, administrator with the Vanderburgh County Health Department said.
“The searches of our customers are intensifying and picking up," Suzy Blesh, owner of Nick Nackery said. “So, I feel like everybody has waited to make a decision, they’ve made decisions, and now they’re shopping last minute.”
Blesh says while her store has been in the community for over 35 years, she’s never had to worry about Halloween being celebrated.
“We’re an event store, and there haven’t been any events and there haven’t been any events for almost eight or nine months this year," Blesh said. “So obviously that’s difficult.”
Regardless of the pandemic, people have been coming in and out to shop for costumes, which is one of the reasons why the Vanderbugh County Health Department wants to make sure the community is safe while celebrating.
“Trick or treating, you know, it’s outside," Gries said. “There are people who may not want to participate, so if people don’t have their lights on and it looks like they’re trying to stay away from folks, respect that, don’t knock on their doors. Hopefully, people will have their lights on if people do want to allow trick or treating at their house.”
Other recommendations including coming up with creative ways to still give out candy, but from a distance and not physically handing it out. Creative ideas that Blesh says they have had to do in the store.
“If someone would try something on and it’s not what they want, then we are sanitizing the mask so they’re safe, and letting them dry out so they’re safe for the next costumer," Blesh said. “Our fitting rooms are open, unlike other stores. Our fitting rooms are open, but each costume that does not go out with a customer that tried it on is being sanitized. Each fitting room is being sanitized from each person to the next.”