Officials in Kanawha and Putnam counties, as well as several cities and towns, including Charleston, decided Tuesday to move trick-or-treat hours from Thursday to Saturday, because of heavy rain forecast for Halloween night.
Putnam County officials decided Tuesday morning to change their trick-or-treating to Saturday from 6 to 8 p.m. About an hour later, Kanawha County officials asked residents to weigh in on social media with their opinions. A few hours later, they announced the change to Saturday from 5 to 7 p.m.
“Trick or Treat is for small children and they should not have to face unnecessary hazards,” Kanawha officials said in a news release. “Statistically more children are struck by cars on Trick or Treat night than any other night and the predicted weather will only make the hazards more dangerous.”
A county’s decision on trick-or-treat hours only affects unincorporated areas of the county, as cities and towns can set their own hours. But those cities and towns often move their hours so the entire county is on the same schedule.
Charleston, South Charleston, St. Albans, Dunbar, Marmet and Clendenin all moved their trick-or-treat hours to line up with Kanawha County’s time of 5 to 7 p.m. Marmet still planned to have its Halloween party at the town recreation building Thursday night. As of Tuesday afternoon, Belle still planned to have trick-or-treat Thursday from 6 to 7 p.m. Thursday, with a party from 7 to 8 p.m. in the Belle Town Hall gymnasium.
Hurricane, Poca and Eleanor joined in Putnam County’s decision to move trick-or-treat to Saturday from 6 to 8 p.m., as did Milton, in Cabell County. Winfield town officials met Tuesday evening and voted to move the event to 6 to 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Fayetteville and Oak Hill should have a decision by Thursday, town employees said. As of Tuesday afternoon, Gauley Bridge still planned to have trick-or-treat from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday.
Kanawha County’s news release noted “the potential for heavy downpours, the possibility of a thunderstorm and wind gusts between 30 and 40 mph” on Thursday.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misstated the times for Halloween activities in Belle.