West Coast streets will be filled with all kinds of adorable and scary ghouls and goblins this Saturday, but residents are reminded to practice extra caution as they celebrate Halloween amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Both Tofino and Ucluelet’s district offices are encouraging trick-or-treaters to follow guidelines recently released by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control including not attending Halloween parties, keeping groups to a maximum of six, incorporating a mask into their costumes and sanitizing their hands frequently.
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Anyone who is self-isolating or feeling sick is asked to stay home and turn off their porch light in an effort to prevent trick-or-treaters from knocking.
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Sgt. Steve Mancini of the Ucluelet RCMP is reminding drivers to be extra cautious that night and to leave their cars at home and walk if possible.
“If you have to drive around on Halloween, know that there’s going to be excited kids running around and they’re not necessarily going to be paying attention to what they’re doing. Decrease your speeds, slow down, watch for kids and if you can get out and walk, we encourage getting out and walking.”
He added that police are not expecting too much mischief to respond to during the night, noting that Ucluelet has a long-held tradition of good behaviour on Halloween.
“Traditionally, in Ucluelet, Halloween has always been a family-friendly event. We haven’t had any issues in years past and I don’t anticipate having any this year. It’s an event where the community seems to get together with the kids and do it for the kids, which is exactly what the day is meant to be,” he said. “Hopefully everybody has a safe evening.”
The town’s annual Cops Vs. Kids floor hockey game has been cancelled this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The event was originally a paintball competition, but was converted to a floor hockey game in 2018.
“It’s unfortunate that we’re going to have to put it off this year,” Mancini said. “It was a great event. We enjoyed it more than the kids did probably, so hopefully we can get it going again next year.”