AMHERST/SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- Halloween candy and costumes are beginning to show up on show shelves, but how will COVID-19 impact plans this year?

In California, the Los Angeles County officials announced a ban on trick or treating on Tuesday, only to change their minds Wednesday, saying it's not recommended, but allowed. In western Mass. town and cities are coming up with their policies and recommendations for Halloween.

In Amherst and other communities around western Mass., people are starting to wonder whether Halloween will go forward as usual or not.

The City of Springfield's Health and Human Services Director Helen Caulton-Harris told Western Mass News the city is considering not allowing door-to-door trick or treating, trunk or treating either.

"I don’t think it’s going to be a wise thing for our residents, because it is difficult to maintain proper social distancing on porches and front doors," she noted.

But Caulton-Harris said they do want kids and adults to enjoy themselves on Halloween, so the city is considering coming up with creative ways for residents to dress up and have fun.

"Drive-by events or contests where individuals dress-up or decorate their vehicles, and drive-by perhaps judges that are physically distance," she explained.

Over in Amherst, some college students weighed in on trick-or-treating.

“Maybe if you could do it socially distant somehow. Maybe if everyone wears masks and you follow social distancing rules, it could be a possible idea, but I don’t think that’s a smart idea," said graduate student Elisabeth Bartkus.

But students Western Mass News spoke with said they're expecting off-campus parties during the Halloween weekend.

“I’m sure that there are going to be big ones because that’s a huge holiday. If people are partying on regular weekends when there’s not a holiday to celebrate, I could imagine it's going to be much worse," said UMass Amherst junior Brigid Finnegan.

Western Mass News reached out to other communities about Halloween plans, such as South Hadley, who is advising residents to use common sense. Meanwhile, the City of Springfield plans to come out with their policies in the next week or so.

Copyright 2020 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

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