TOLEDO, Ohio — UPDATE: Metroparks Toledo has canceled Thursday night's drive-thru trunk or treat event scheduled for Side Cut. The final trunk or treat is still scheduled for Oct. 20 at Pearson Metropark from 5-7 p.m. "For the safety of our partners, volunteers and staff, Metroparks is canceling tonight's Trunk or Treat scheduled at Side Cut," Metroparks officials said.
As Halloween approaches in the middle of a global pandemic, there are safety recommendations from local health departments this year.
While many people say they're excited about trick-or-treating on the actual holiday, others are celebrating early with a more socially-distanced approach.
"I wanted to bring all my grandkids to have a good day. Trick or treat, and get them out of the house and doing stuff," Kline said.
Celebrating Halloween is a must for those who have looked forward to it all year round. However, things are different in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, which Scott Carpenter, a spokesperson with MetroParks Toledo, acknowledged.
"So, this is the first of three trunk or treat drive-thrus and the first ever that we've done like this. Our team has been so creative this year coming up with safe ways to get people outdoors and stay connected," Carpenter said.
Almost 350 cars stopped by the Toledo Botanical Garden, where the event was hosted. People giving out candy wore masks and handed out treats to children in the safety of their cars.
Drive-thru trunk or treat proves successful for those who want to celebrate Halloween safely
Parents, like Carol Sharp, said the event was something families need right now as they figure out ways to get outside and enjoy the holidays.
"They are cooped up a lot lately. And just getting out and being able to put on those costumes and express themselves differently, it really helps with their mental health," Sharp said.
"They don't need to miss out right now. As long as they're staying safe and like you see, we're a family so get them all together and having fun," Kline added.
It's a chance to make new memories this Halloween.
"We love looking at all the decorations and the costumes. I mean, it's fun for everyone," Sharp said.
Meanwhile, participants could still follow social distancing rules and other guidelines.
"So, we'll take the challenge. We need to continue to keep people coming outdoors. All throughout the winter," Carpenter sai.d
Metroparks Toledo will host another two trunk or treat drive-thru events. One will be held this Thursday at Side Cut Metropark in Maumee. The other will be held next Tuesday at the Pearson Metropark in Oregon. Both will run from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.