As with most holidays, Halloween is going to look a little different in Seattle this year. Large parties are not an option, as recent upticks in COVID-19 cases around the area continue to raise alarms. However, for those who want to get into the spooky spirit, there are a few socially distanced options in the food and drinks world. Here’s a guide to how to celebrate safely, and keep the kids entertained as well.
What’s up with trick-or-treating this year?
Seattle hasn’t outright banned door-to-door trick-or-treating in the city, but the King County health department has strongly advised against the practice. Instead, officials from the Seattle Department of Transportation [SDOT] are encouraging residents to sign up for Trick or Street Blocks, an extension of Seattle’s Stay Healthy Streets program. Basically, those who wish to apply for a permit can block off a neighborhood road to traffic for costume hangout sessions outdoors. Everyone is still advised to wear face coverings to reduce the risk of COVID transmission (Halloween masks don’t count). For more trick-or-treating guidance during the pandemic, here’s what some leading experts say.
Which restaurants, cafes and bars are doing Halloween stuff?
Cafe Nordo: Pioneer Square’s hybrid pop-up cafe and underground theater is launching a three-course in-person dining experience for Halloweeen. But for those who prefer to stay home, there’s also a dinner, cake, and cocktail kit that comes with an escape room-like game based on the true crime classic “Til Death do us Part?” by Eloise VanAnda. Available for delivery, starting from $105.
Dreamland Bar & Diner: Fremont’s new all-day cafe has already impressed with its selection of decadent breakfast dishes and creative cocktails. For the month of October, it has dubbed itself “Screamland,” leaning into a haunted house theme for decorations and adding a few food and drink specials. On Halloween night, the restaurant is also planning to host a socially distanced costume contest.
Stella: This new restaurant at the Hotel Sorrento on First Hill is hosting a “zombie soiree” October 30, which features a three-course prix fixe menu and seating on the outside heated garden-turned-graveyard with some ghoulish amenities, including pumped in fog. There will be a costume contest with airfare and hotel prizes. Info and ticket reservations can be found here.
Navy Strength: This month, Belltown’s acclaimed tropical bar offers to-go drink offerings inspired by horror movies, such as the Mister Babadook Kit with Two Fold Australian Whisky, black tea, and apple, and the Telekinetic Energy (a “Carrie”-themed slushie with aged rum, Rainier cherries, Benedictine, and “blood” paint, set on fire). The takeout versions come with popcorn and a souvenir zombie glass.
Friday Afternoon: An online shop that added a retail location in Wallingford, this tea destination serves a wide variety of herbal blends with a medicinal focus and geeky mixes based on films, games, and literature. As such, it certainly embraces Halloween, with offerings such as Raise the Dead (white and black tea, with cranberry, and marigold) and Goblin King Blend (green tea, ginger, and black peppercorn).
The Mountaineering Club: The rooftop bar in the U District’s Graduate Hotel will feature a campfire-themed ghost story kit on Halloween that includes a booklet of scary stories, a mini flashlight, and drinks, such as The Scarecrow’s Song with Vodka, frangelico, and lemon, and pumpkin spiced s’mores. Open for dine-in, with some to-go cocktails as well.
What food-related activities are good for kids?
Boo in Burien: The city of Burien has organized a series of events geared toward families over the next two-weeks, which includes candy boxes and cupcake-making kits that can be arranged for safe pickup at the local farmers market. Boxes come with a craft, a toy, and a scavenger hunt map
Seattle Chocolate: On October 31, Tukwila’s chocolate factory is hosting a haunted tour that features drive-through trick-or-treating, with costumes encouraged. No ticket purchase required, and all chocolates offered are prepackaged. Find out more about how the facility is handling COVID protocols here.
Great Washington Camp-in Spooktacular: The Washington State Parks Foundation is hosting a virtual event October 30 that includes an outdoors-cooking demonstration and free recipe for butternut pumpkin shiitake sesame ramen from camp food expert MONTyBOCA, plus a magic show and a “Thriller” dance lesson.