Today is Halloween, a holiday that seems to grow more popular in America every year. In fact, we can't remember the last time there were so many holiday-related events all happening on one day! And it's no longer just a children's holiday, with more adults using it as an excuse to dress up and party.
There are a number of precautions that children and adults can take to make sure it's a fun and safe experience.
If you've got little ones of your own going out tonight, make sure they have reflective strips on their costumes or carry glow sticks, they trick-or-treat in groups with adult supervision, and examine their candy before you allow them to eat it.
Instruct children to trick-or-treat in well-known neighborhoods at homes that have a porch light on, never enter a stranger's home or car for a treat, and obey all traffic and pedestrian regulations. Don't assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing trick-or-treaters. Just because one car stops doesn't mean others will.
Adults and children: Be careful with your costumes. Try to avoid clothing that restricts movement or masks that can obscure vision.
Wait until children are home to sort and check treats. Though tampering is rare, a responsible adult should closely examine all treats and throw away any spoiled, unwrapped or suspicious items. Make sure items that can cause choking (such as hard candies), are given only to those of an appropriate age.
For the grown-up ghouls and goblins whose idea of a good Halloween involves a costume party rather than a door-to-door candy hunt, enjoy yourselves, but don't drink and drive. Know your limits and have a designated driver.
We hope you and your children have a fun and safe holiday experience.