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Chester County Press

New Garden Cancels Haunted House Tour

09/23/2020 06:59PM ● By Richard L. Gaw, Staff Writer

It was announced at the Sept. 21 New Garden Board of Supervisors meeting that the Halloween haunted house event, scheduled for Oct. 23-24 at St. Anthony in the Hills, has been canceled.

The cancelation comes on the heels of the guidelines administered by the Centers for Disease Control that advises trick-or-treaters to avoid high-risk activities this year, such as participating in traditional trick-or-treating where treats are handed to children who go door to door; attending crowded costume parties indoors; visiting an indoor haunted house event; going on hayrides or tractor rides with people not in their household; and traveling to rural fall festivals not in their immediate community.

“Many traditional Halloween activities can be high-risk for spreading viruses,” the CDC reported in its list of Halloween safety recommendations. “There are several safer, alternative ways to participate in Halloween. If you may have COVID-19 or you may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, you should not participate in in-person Halloween festivities and should not give out candy to trick-or-treaters.”

In an effort to remain safe, the CDC recommended several lower-risk Halloween activities, such as carving or decorating pumpkins with members of a household; decorating the house or apartment for the holiday; hosting a Halloween scavenger hunt where children are given lists of Halloween-themed things to look for while they walk outdoors from house to house; holding a virtual Halloween costume contest; and holding a Halloween-themed movie night with the family.

The CDC also warned that a Halloween mask is not a replacement for a cloth mask, and that a costume mask should not be used unless it is made of two or more layers of breathable fabric that covers the mouth and nose, and doesn’t leave gaps around the face.

In addition, the agency advised that families use hand sanitizer before arriving at pumpkin patches and apple orchards, and to remain socially distant from others during these visits.

For parents who are looking for proper safety protocols this Oct. 31, they will be able visit the Southern Chester County Regional PoliceDepartment website, in October.

In other township business, the men of the Southern Chester County Regional Police Department will be participating in this year’s Blue Beards for Charity event, which will require them to grow beards and facial hair from Oct. 1 to Nov. 30.

The event, done in partnership with other police departments in Chester County, will raise money for four organizations: Unite for Her, A Child’s Light, the Chester County Crime Victims Center, and The Sambuco Children’s Education Fund, named in honor of Chris Sambuco, a 15-year veteran of the Caln Township Police Department, who died in April 2018.

In 2019, the event raised more than $40,000 for local charitable organizations.

“What better way for us to remind others that police departments are their friends than to give back a little for such a great cause,” said Lt. Joseph Greenwalt of the Southern Chester County Regional Police Department. “This event is a reminder that we are here to make communities better places. We’re proud to add our name to this event, especially because it also honors one of our fellow officers.”

To learn more about making a private donation, visit the New Garden Township’s website at beginning in October.

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email [email protected].