LETHBRIDGE, ALTA. -- Several local businesses have taken a hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic and with restrictions on social gatherings and measures around social distancing many would think those associated with Halloween might too.

However, despite the pandemic,  there is no trick to the treat of the sales surge the Spirit of Halloween is experiencing.

“We thought we might have an average year. We’ve been busier than usual and we have had a really great year,” said store manager Lois Punton.

There are only a couple of days left to shop for Halloween but business is booming.

“People seem to be just looking for that special something. I think with (all the disruptions caused by) COVID-19 they're wanting to do something special for Halloween,” said Punton

Sales may not be taking a hit but some people are thinking twice about their plans for October 31st.

“I honestly don’t know to be honest,” said costume shopper Sophie Bilak. “The people I work with are kind of throwing like a small thing, it’s like under 15 (people).”


Fitting the Alberta government guidelines around social gatherings, the message is simple and straight forward.

 “I would strongly recommend that anyone who's planning an indoor Halloween party reconsider or perhaps limits the guest list," said Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Deena Hinshaw.

"This is not the year to have a large costume party with many people gathered indoors eating and drinking together."

The province also suggests:

*  Choosing a costume that has room for a mask

*  Trick-or-treating at a distance, and avoiding touching doorbells or railings

*  Disinfecting candy packages

*  Those handing out candy should also wear a mask and should avoid leaving out self-serve bowls of bulk candy

Instead, Albertans handing out candy could:

*  Use tongs to hand out pre-packaged treats;

*  Hand out treats from the driveway or front lawn;

*  Set up a desk or table to keep yourself separated from trick-or-treaters;

*  Build a candy slide, catapult or other “non-touch delivery method”

*  Make candy bags and space them out on a table or blanket.

“So trick-or-treating, I believe, is a low-risk activity," Hinshaw said. "All the other activities that might happen indoors I would recommend those not happen,”

Bilak hopes the COVID-19 precautions will make for a fun - and safe - night.

“We just all want to hang out. We haven’t seen each other in a while. We want to do things. You know be with one another, have memories instead of just having a year wasted,” said Bilak