Halloween Towne canceled this year over concerns for COVID-19 pandemic

LOWVILLE, NY — Organizers of the annual Halloween Towne celebration have announced this year’s event, slated for Saturday, Oct. 31, has been canceled. The move comes amid concerns over the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic that have led to the cancellation of other events that attract large crowds.

Event chairman Jeremiah S. Papineau said the decision was a difficult one but one made out of an abundance of caution.

“I know many people are looking forward to the return of large events in our area and I am, too,” said Mr. Papineau. “However, even though reported COVID-19 cases in our region are low when compared to other areas, I don’t want to do anything that could contribute to even the slightest uptick, especially so close on the heels of schools reopening.”

Halloween Towne — which typically draws hundreds of children and their families to downtown Lowville — is held the last Saturday of October each year, which would have fallen this year on the same date as Halloween. While the event has included activities like face painting, scavenger hunts, haunted houses and, last year, a free movie showing at the Town Hall Theater, Halloween Towne most notably centers around door-to-door trick-or-treating at businesses in downtown Lowville.

“In addition to the concerns over COVID-19 itself, we know small businesses have felt the pinch financially over the last six months,” said Mr. Papineau. “We didn’t feel right asking them to take on the additional expense that comes with handing out candy at our event, especially in a year where we wouldn’t have hosted any other activities over concerns about enforcing social distancing.”

Mr. Papineau said he looks forward to the return of Halloween Towne next year on its scheduled date of Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021.