Remember being a kid, and Trick-or-Treating in your neighborhood? Comparing costumes, yelling "Trick or Treat?" when the adults opened the door, singing "trick or treat, smell my feet, give me something good to eat" when out of range of those same adults (you wanted to be nice - you needed candy!). At the end of the night, you'd go back home and compare candy with your friends or siblings, taking stock by dumping it all on the ground and organizing it into types, then piling it all back together.
Now imagine if you were that same child, but you couldn't eat that candy because you had an allergy to one of the ingredients frequently found in Halloween candy, or in other items produced by the same factories as the candy.
It wouldn't be the end of the world, but it would feel like it! You'd always feel like you were missing out.
Enter the Teal Pumpkin Project.
Launched in 2014, The Teal Pumpkin Project is a new (it started in 2014) food allergy awareness program centered around Halloween.
The basic idea is that in addition to Halloween candy (or instead of, if you choose), you offer non-candy items to Trick-or-Treaters. To show that you have non-candy items available as treats, you put a teal pumpkin on your porch, window, or other visible location.
This way, even children who are not able to eat candy, or choose not to eat candy, still get Halloween loot!
Here are some suggestions of items to include:
- mini paratroopers
- finger puppets
- temporary tattoos
- crazy straws
- mini activity books
- bouncy balls