With trick-or-treating events fast approaching, public safety officials have offered a series of tips to encourage a safe Halloween season.
The Indiana Department of Homeland Security, Indiana State Police and Indiana Department of Transportation encourage motorists, residents and trick-or-treaters to take safety precaution to prevent accidents as children don their costumes and collect candy from neighbors.
Motorists are encouraged to drive carefully with vehicle headlights on to make automobiles more visible to children. Drivers should also avoid talking on a cellphone or other distracting activities.
Trick-or-treaters are asked to use sidewalks wherever possible and should carry flashlights and look both ways before crossing the street. They should trick or treat only during hours designated by the community and should visit only familiar homes with the porch lights on. Older children should carry cellphones for quick communication, and younger children should be accompanied by an adult or older child. Children should never enter a home.
When purchasing costumes, trick-or-treaters should make sure the label says "flame resistant" and should avoid costumes made of flimsy materials or outfits with big sleeves or skirts. Costume makeup is preferred to masks, but if a mask is used, it should fit securely and have eyeholes large enough to allow full vision. The use of reflective tape can also help drivers spot children.
Homeowners expecting trick-or-treaters should remove anything from lawns, steps and porches that could be an obstacle and should check outdoor lights. Pets should be restrained.
Children should not eat treats until they get home and an adult has inspected candy. Eat only candy that is wrapped in its original wrapper and inspect fruit before allowing children to eat it.
Halloween is coming up, and area communities will be hosting trick-or-treat hours. Below are the times for northeast Indiana.
Decatur: Halloween parade begins at 6:57 p.m. Oct. 29; regular trick or treat 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Geneva: Trick or treat at downtown businesses 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday; fire department chili dinner and Halloween parade Oct. 27; parade begins at 7 p.m.
Berne: Halloween parade 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday; trick or treat and "Treats at the Tower" event 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday
Fort Wayne: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Grabill: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Huntertown: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Leo-Cedarville: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
New Haven: Halloween carnival at Schnelker Park 5 to 6:30 p.m. Oct. 31; trick or treat at downtown businesses 5 to 7 p.m.; regular trick or treat 6 to 8 p.m.
Ashley: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Auburn: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Butler: 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 27
Garrett: Garrett Ghoul Spooktacular at Garrett Keyser Butler campus 4:30 to 10 p.m. Oct. 20; 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Waterloo: 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Andrews: 5 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Huntington: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Markle: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Roanoke: 5 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Warren: Scarecrow Festival 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 26; regular trick or treat 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Milford: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
North Webster: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Pierceton: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Silver Lake: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Syracuse: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Warsaw: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Winona Lake: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Albion: Chain O' Lakes State Park All Hallows' Eve Celebration noon to 10 p.m. Oct. 27; regular trick or treat 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Cromwell: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Kendallville: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31
Ligonier: 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Rome City: 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Angola: Halloween Fun in Commons Park at the Selman Timber Frame pavilion 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Oct. 27; regular trick or treat 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Clear Lake: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Fremont: 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Hudson: 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31
Orland: 5 to 6:30 p.m. Oct. 30
Bluffton: "Boo in Bluffton" with downtown businesses, 5 to 7 p.m. Oct. 31; regular trick or treat 5 to 8 p.m.
Churubusco: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31
Columbia City: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31.
South Whitley: 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 31