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Tricks-4-Safe-Treating

Leaves are falling, temperatures are dropping, and pumpkin-flavored everything is popping up everywhere – Ladies and Gentlemen, Fall is finally here. Along with this long-awaited beginning of the coziest season yet comes one of the most popular holidays around – Halloween! Here are some helpful tips and advice to ensure both fun and safety during your trick-or-treating adventures for kids, teens, and adults alike.


Before you get started…
  • Keep costumes both creative and safe.
  • Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers.
  • Face paint and makeup are better than masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.
  • Have children carry glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
  • Make sure the costume is the right size to prevent trips and falls. If possible, choose a light-colored costume.
While you’re walking…
  • Only cross the street at corners with traffic signals or crosswalks.
  • Look left, right and left again before crossing and pay attention as you cross the street.
  • Put electronic devices down and keep heads up.
  • Walk, don’t run, across the street.
  • Teach children to make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
  • Always walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible.  (Children should walk on direct routes with the fewest street crossings.)
  • Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Teach children to never dart out into the street or cross between parked cars.
While going door-to-door…
  • Check candy for choking hazards like gum and hard candies. Throw away any candy that is not sealed with a wrapper and avoid homemade treats received from strangers.
  • If you’re turning your home into a haunted house keep safety in mind. Make sure steps, sidewalks, porches, and paths are well-lit and free of decorations and holiday props.
  • Only approach houses with a partner and stick to porches that are well lit.
  • Be mindful of allergies when selecting which candy you’d like to eat or pass out.
While you’re driving…
  • Drive VERY slow. Be VERY alert. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways.
  • Take extra time to look for kids at intersections, on medians, and curbs.
  • Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.
  • Eliminate as many internal distractions as possible to concentrate on the road and your surroundings.
  • Anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn your headlights on earlier in the day to spot children from greater distances.
If you have a teenager…
  • Review the importance of obeying the law. Sit down with your child and discuss private property, town curfews, and alcohol regulations.
  • Remind them of your house rules and be upfront that police are patrolling and looking for misbehaving teens.
  • If they are going to a party, speak to the parents of the host to ensure it will be chaperoned.
  • Review driving safety. Remind your teen that both young children and intoxicated drivers will be on the roads that evening.
  • If your kids are going to a party, tell them to keep an eye on their drink. Once they have put it down, they should not drink it again.
  • Clearly discuss with your teen where they can and cannot go.
  • Track their whereabouts with apps like Snapchat or Find my iPhone.
  • Limit the number of friends in a car. Be proactive and remove distractions for your teen driver and limit the number of kids allowed to ride.
Always remember…
Popular trick-or-treating hours are 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. so be especially alert for young children during those hours. Also, kids under the age of 12 should NOT be alone at night without adult supervision. If kids are mature enough to be out without supervision, they should stick to familiar areas that are well lit and/or trick-or-treat in groups.
Most importantly...
HAVE FUN! Enjoy the day in your own safe and responsible way. Connect with family and friends alike and make this Halloween one to pleasantly remember!
Articles used for reference and material:
https://www.safekids.org/tip/halloween-safety-tips
https://www.teensafe.com/blog/13-tips-keeping-teens-safe-halloween/
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/halloween-safety-10-tips_b_12561956
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The importance of having, and being, good neighbors.

Observed annually on September 28th is National Good Neighbor Day.

You ask, “Seriously, is that for real?”. Well, matter of fact it is.

National Good Neighbor Day was created in the early 1970s by Becky Mattson of Lakeside, Montana. In 1978, United States President Jimmy Carter issued Proclamation 4601:

As our Nation struggles to build friendship among the peoples of this world, we are mindful that the noblest human concern is concern for others. Understanding, love and respect build cohesive families and communities. The same bonds cement our Nation and the nations of the world. For most of us, this sense of community is nurtured and expressed in our neighborhoods where we give each other an opportunity to share and feel part of a larger family…I call upon the people of the United States and interested groups and organizations to observe such day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

That Proclamation designated September 24, 1978, as National Good Neighbor Day. In 2003, National Good Neighbor Day was changed from the fourth Sunday in September to September 28th.

Group Of Friends Having Outdoor Barbeque At Home

I ask, “Why shouldn’t this day be every day?”.

In this day and age where we have the “wave neighbors”, the ones that will wave but don’t know your name nor care to, and the “you don’t exist neighbors” who drive past while you’re putting the garbage can at the street and won’t look at you, it’s a blessing to have a good neighbor.

But it's an even greater thing to BE a good neighbor.

Where we choose to reside with our families is an important decision, and it’s imperative that we know who surrounds us. The best neighborhoods are those where people have taken time to get to know one another by learning each other’s names, sharing emergency contact numbers and agreeing to look out for each other. This can be as simple as checking on neighbors after a storm, flood or power outage or as complex as having a well-organized block watch.

Here are some suggestions for celebrating the day:

-  Introduce yourself, offer a smile and friendly hello to your neighbor.

-  Help your neighbor in some way.

-  Have your neighbor over for coffee or a meal.

-  Help each other identify safety lapses, did they leave their garage door open?

-  Get to know your neighbor a little better, ask what they like to do.

-  Respect their boundaries and privacy.

-  Has a neighbor done something nice for you? Pay it forward to another neighbor.

-  Share your contact list of handyman and home services.

The same principles apply for condo and apartment living: chat with folks on the elevator ride or hold open a door for a neighbor and ask how their day is going. Try to be mindful of the shared building and respectful each others space.


Sources:

www.nationaldaycalendar.com/national-good-neighbor-day-september-28

www.etiquette.about.com/od/RelationshipEtiquette/a/Neighborhood-Etiquette.htm

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