By Claire Moran SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – Children across Central New York will be trick-or-treating to celebrate Halloween and parent Nina Brown said recent sightings of scary clowns have made her nervous this year.
“With everything that’s going on, I’m certainly more aware,” Brown said. “Anybody that seems maybe too old to be trick-or-treating that’s dressed up, I’m always a little bit aware of around my kids or certainly this year anyone dressed as a clown is going to be getting some attention from me and I’ll just make sure I keep my kids away from all clowns.”
Brown said that if her children saw a clown, they would probably think it was another trick-or-treater. Another parent, Elizabeth Wimer, said she has not spoken with her children about clowns because they are young.
“If we do see something of that nature, it’s something that we would talk directly to them because I think it’s important that they get information from their parents, a trusted source, as opposed to I’m sure what they’ve heard in school from some of their friends that might be a little exaggerated,” Wimer said.
The Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office posted some tips on its Facebook page for parents to help keep their kids safe on Halloween night. The police told parents to warn their young ones about “stranger danger” and to obey traffic laws. Officials said young children should walk with an adult. Parents should make sure that the child will not trip over his or her costume and that nothing obstructs his or her vision. The post told parents that face paint is a safer choice than masks because the masks make it harder for children to see. It also suggested that parents attach reflective tape to their child’s costume or have him or her walk with a glow stick or flashlight. Finally, children should not eat their candy until parents have inspected all of it and thrown away any suspicious-looking treats.
Brown said when she goes through her children’s candy, she rarely finds any that may have been tampered.
“There have been times, and I don’t know if it’s because they’ve been handling the candy in their bag, but that it’s open or torn and it’s just a good idea to toss that,” Brown said. “There’s plenty of candy that there’s left over for them to enjoy so I get rid of anything that looks like somebody could have manipulated it in any way.”
The Sheriff’s Office also warned drivers to be careful on the roads on Halloween. New York’s governor Andrew Cuomo also announced on Thursday that state police would crackdown on drunk driving until Tuesday.