FRANKLIN, Tenn. (WKRN) — Costumes and candy: two things kids look forward to every Halloween. But this year COVID-19 is altering the way some Halloween traditions will look.
In Franklin, West Main Street and Fair Street will be closed to traffic between 7th and 11th Avenues to create a safe space for trick or treaters. Franklin Police spokesman Lt. Charles Warner says it will also create more room for social distancing.
“Closing the roads will help to protect them from motorists. It will help motorists avoid having to navigate through a crowded street full of kids. And it will also allow a little more space to help people social distance because they will be able to use not only the sidewalk, but the streets in that area as well,” Lt. Warner said.
Ninth Avenue between Natchez Street and 96 West will also be closed off for trick-or-treaters on Halloween night.
The Centers for Disease Control classifies trick-or-treating as a “high risk” activity since it requires interaction with a lot of different people. Eighty-two-year-old Marty Ligon is working around the risk.
“I’m gonna be cautious. I’m setting up two 8-foot tables across my driveway and I bought packaged treats. So I’m gonna have a sign and say please take one,” Ligon said.
Neighbor Shelly Birdsong is also making adjustments.
“We’ll figure out a way. I think there’s like a pipe that you can make like out of a PVC pipe and shoot the candy through that,” Birdsong said.
Both West Main Street women say they usually hand out between 3,000 and 5,000 pieces of candy on Halloween, but aren’t sure what to expect during the pandemic.
Lt. Warner said the police department will be on patrol as usual, but are altering some of their traditions, too.
“The thing that’s going to look a little bit different, and it’s kind of hard for us because we like handing out candy and glow necklaces every year, those are the things we’re going to pull back on ourselves,” Lt. Warner said.
If you are planing to trick-or-treat, the CDC recommends wearing a mask, carrying hand sanitizer with you, and stay 6 feet away from people you don’t live with.
COVID-19 in Tennessee
(This reflects what the TDH is reporting each day at 2 p.m. CST )
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