#parent | #kids | Toms River Sets Trick-Or-Treating For Halloween Amid Coronavirus

TOMS RIVER, NJ — Toms River will have its trick-or-treating on Oct. 31, a decision announced Tuesday by Toms River officials.

Toms River Mayor Maurice Hill and Toms River Police Chief Mitch Little said it was a joint decision made to set trick-or-treating from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The announcement was made Tuesday, to put an end to speculation that has been rampant of the status of Halloween trick-or-treating amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“We respect that this is an unusual year due to the COVID pandemic, but want to leave the choice to trick-or-treat up to the individual families in our community,” Hill said.

Toms River typically has its trick-or-treating on Oct. 30, alll Hallows Eve. But because of the pandemic, the 2020 Toms River Fire Companh Halloween Parade was canceled. With the parade canceled, it created the option to have trick-or-treating on Halloween.

South Toms River, which follows Toms River’s lead on Halloween, also will have its trick-or-treating on Oct. 31.

Beachwood announced recently that its trick-or-treating would be Oct. 30, but it’s unclear if the borough would say with that plan given Toms River’s decision to switch. The Borough Council is scheduled to meet Oct. 7.

Anyone who plans to trick-or-treat in Toms River is asked to wear a mask or face covering in accordance with CDC guidelines, practice social distancing, carry hand sanitizer and be respectful of those who choose not to participate.

Residents who do not want to participate are encouraged to turn off their front light, close their front door and/or place a sign in front of the home. Residents who do want to participate please leave your porch lights on.

Governor Phil Murphy said on Sept. 9 that Halloween trick-or-treating remains on in New Jersey this year despite the coronavirus pandemic. The township’s guidelines are subject to change, pending any future directives from the governor.

Little said while Halloween is one of the most enjoyable times of the year for children, it also presents dangers if the proper precautions are not taken.

“On October 31st, motorists should be aware and drive with extra caution. We advise parents to accompany children, always carry a flashlight for safety, stay on sidewalks or as close to the curb as possible and only go to houses where the porch lights are on,” Little said. “While there is no official curfew in Toms River, Little says that all trick-or-treaters will be asked to be off town streets by 9 p.m.”

“For a variety of reasons, such as pre-existing health conditions, or personal choice, residents may to choose not to participate in trick-or-treating this year,” Little said. We never know what someone is going through and ask that if a home chooses not to participate in Halloween celebrations, you respectfully move on. The day should be a day of fun for the children in our community.”

“As always please contact the Toms River Police Department if you see or hear any suspicious activity. Have a safe and Happy Halloween,” Little said.

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