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As Halloween approaches and you anticipate children in costumes visiting you for a treat, consider participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project. Instead of buying a bag of candy, you can select another goody. Not only does this make Halloween a little better for the food allergy kids (this counted as one of many reasons I didn’t enjoy Halloween as a child), it can make it a healthier and safer event for everyone. The kids won’t have to worry about candy that can land them in a hospital or death bed, whether from a severe allergy or from poisoned or otherwise tainted candy. They also may not consume a high quantity of sugar, which would benefit their health greatly. Stores offer non-food items in the Halloween and party sections and include items like toys, stickers, and more. Numerous stores also sell teal pumpkins you can put outside your door to indicate your participation. You can purchase one of those or paint one yourself.

Rather than encourage the scary aspects of the day, let’s consider how we can use a day where neighbors interact more than usual to support positive interaction, safety and healthy habits.