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When are kids trick-or-treating in Arlington?

Halloween decorations on N. Jackson Street in 2021 (staff photo by Jay Westcott)

Halloween 2022 is just days away and if you’re new-ish to Arlington you might be wondering: when do kids trick or treat around here?

Unlike some local jurisdictions in other parts of the country, Arlington does not designate a day and time for trick-or-treating. Instead, the annual, costumed candy-gathering spree traditionally takes place on Halloween (Oct. 31), starting just before sunset (around 6 p.m.).

The door knocking typically ends around 8 p.m., though some stragglers will remain out later.

This year, Halloween is taking place on a Monday, so drivers and trick-or-treaters alike should be extra careful on the roads during the evening commute. Compounding the danger, rain is in the forecast for Monday.

Here are some general tips for planning your Halloween evening, from past years:

  • Children should be accompanied by an adult.
  • Choose a neighborhood or street you’re familiar with or is known for getting in the spirit.
  • Houses with the outside lights are the ones expecting and ready for trick-or-treaters.
  • Expect the older, non-costumed crowds later in the evening.
  • If you’re passing out treats, turn the outside lights off when you run out.

Arlington County put out the following press release about Halloween celebrations this year.

Ghouls, ghosts, and goblins – oh my!

The days are growing shorter, the temperatures are dropping, and the leaf trucks are gearing up to start their collection – another spooky season is here in Arlington County.

With Halloween creeping around the corner, we’ve compiled some ways to make the most of your trick-or-treating, frightening fun, and safe spookiness in Arlington.

Trick-or-Treating

While Arlington doesn’t have set hours for trick-or-treating, you should expect the candy crusade to coincide with sunset, which is just after 6 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 31, 2022.

As Arlington’s younger population takes to the streets, keep in mind these trick-or-treating tips from our friends at Arlington County Police Department:

  • See and be seen! Select bright costumes, add reflective tape and/or carry flashlights and glow sticks.
  • Plan your trick-or-treat route in advance. Stick to familiar neighborhoods and well-lit streets. For those on the Nextdoor app, check out its annual Treat Map, which allows people to share how they will be celebrating Halloween – whether it’s decorating one’s home or taking part in the neighborhood trick-or-treating by giving out candy.
  • Never send children out alone. Younger children should be with a trusted adult. Ensure older children take friends and stay together.
  • Walk on sidewalks and cross at corners, using traffic signals and/or crosswalks.
  • Motorists are encouraged to slow down, anticipate heavy pedestrian traffic and turn on your headlights earlier in the evening to spot children from greater distances.

The press release goes on to urge those who are feeling ill to stay at home, given that the pandemic still ongoing and other respiratory viruses like flu and RSV are circulating in Virginia.

“Skip the Halloween party if you aren’t feeling well,” the release says. Hand washing is also encouraged.

“If you’re out trick-or-treating, bring hand sanitizer,” the county wrote. “If you’re giving out candy, wash your hands frequently.”

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