Families celebrating Halloween this weekend have been told to avoid guising in a bid to stop further spread of coronavirus.
Children dressing up as their favourite characters and going to door-to-door looking for treats has been an annual tradition for generations.
However, the deputy first minister insisted the move is necessary to ensure current restrictions on gatherings are adhered to.
John Swinney said: “I know guising is a big part of Halloween and children will be sad to miss out, but as door-to-door guising brings an additional and avoidable risk of spreading the virus, our clear advice for families is to avoid it.”
He urged those still wishing to celebrate the spooky holiday to come up with safer activities to entertain the family.
Here’s a list of alternative ways families can still have their Halloween fun while avoiding the scare of spreading the virus.
Visit a patch to pick a pumpkin
If you take the Scottish Government’s guidance to avoid guising altogether, there are still plenty of other ways to mark Halloween without the family being stuck indoors.
Pumpkin picking is the latest autumn trend in Scotland as younger generations continue to adopt American traditions.
The days of carving lanterns from tumshies could now be a thing of the past as pumpkins become more and more popular.
There are now patches popping up across Scotland as the trend becomes the norm.
Here is a list of patches open to the public this year:
- Udny Pumpkins, Ellon
- South Ardbennie, Perthshire
- Cairnie Farm, Cupar
- Craigies Farm, South Queensferry
- Arnprior, Stirling
- Balgone Estate, East Lothian
- Kilduff farm, East Lothian
- MND’s Theme Park Outdoor Pumpkin Festival, Bellshill
- Valley View At Gouldings, Carluke
Get competitive in a carving contest
Once you’ve picked your perfect pumpkin, why not challenge the family to a carving competition?
Get artistic with stencils or bravely go freehand to create the most impressive spooky designs to rival your relatives.
Make things more interesting by taking the contest online and challenge your wider family on Zoom.
Show off your work with a pumpkin trail
What better way to show off your hard work than with a neighbourhood pumpkin trail?
Families can place a pumpkin somewhere on or around their homes so children can wander through the street and count as many as possible.
The idea has become increasingly popular this year as parents are keen to make sure Halloween happens for their children.
Every pumpkin found, children can be given a sweet treat to add to their bag.
Just look at it as a 2020 spin on guising!
Give your face mask a Halloween twist
Young ones can give the term Halloween mask a whole new meaning by giving their face coverings a spooky makeover.
Using stickers, felt or even a parent’s sewing skills, they can create a terrifying design ready to scare the public on their next trip outdoors.
Show off your costume from your doorstep
At the height of lockdown, Scotland saw communities come together from the safety of their gardens and doorsteps.
Whether that was for the weekly Clap for Carers event or performing a dance from their front gate.
Why can’t the same be done for Halloween? Children can show off their costume from the safety of their front garden or street for passers-by and neighbours to enjoy.
Host a virtual Halloween quiz
The idea of Zoom might give people the chills these days but why not get the whole family involved in a Halloween quiz?
Brush up on horror movie trivia and hellish history before going head-to-head to see who is the spook-tacular winner.
Put those lockdown baking skills to the test
Time in lockdown taught people a lot of skills, the most common one was learning how to bake.
So, how about putting those talents to the test by baking some spooky sweet treats?
From creepy cookies to pumpkin pancakes there’s an endless list of recipes online to try out.
Discover the light with a trip to GlasGLOW
If staying in isn’t people’s style then a trip to see GlasGLOW’s Halloween light show might be the perfect choice.
The popular event is set to return to Glasgow for a third year for the Halloween season.
It is held at the Botanic Gardens and will run from the October 29 – November 15.
Visitors have been told to expect an “immersive journey transporting them to other worlds where ancient powers have been unleashed”.
For ticket details click here.
Watch a Halloween classic at the drive-in
Nothing gets people in the Halloween spirit quite like a horror film so why not enjoy a good old-fashioned scare on the silver screen?
Drive-in movie events have been cropping up across the country over the past few years.
This October many pop-up venues are offering younger viewers some spooky family favourites including Hocus Pocus but also screening some horror classics like The Shining for adults.
Here’s a list of pop-up events scheduled in Scotland this month: