Late into October, when the nights have grown long and our horror movie lists longer and last-minute spooktacular costume planning is in full swing. We are just a few days from Halloweekend. Without a doubt everyone is ready to get out and enjoy a spooky weekend with friends and family. As your official health and wellness guide, we wanted to provide you with a few tips to keep you and your friends safe during this festive season.

A quick reminder that WSU is a dry campus, and alcohol is not allowed on school property. We do not support nor endorse underage drinking. However, we recognize that Halloween is a popular time for students to drink. Below we’re providing alcohol education, COVID-19 safety, and security resources. 

Before You Embark

 

No Costume is Complete Without a Mask.

Michael Myers may be spooky, but contracting COVID-19 is scary. Stay safe this Halloweekend by masking up.

Remember, a costume mask is not a suitable substitute for a cloth mask, and doubling up on masks can become a breathing hazard. Instead, we recommend finding a mask that matches your costume.

Get Bit by a Vaccine Not By a Vampire.

The safest way to spend your Halloweekend is to celebrate with others who have been vaccinated.

Haven’t gotten your COVID-19 Vaccine yet? Stop by the Health Services Clinic upstairs in IWC 222, M–F from 10–11:30AM & 2:30–4PM and we will prick you for free.

Don’t Join the Walking Dead, Stay Home and Get Some Rest Instead.

Remember your health could affect others. If you’re feeling ill before or after a gathering–it’s best to stay home, self-report, get tested, and rest instead.

Health & Wellness Services offers COVID-19 tests daily to those who are exposed or symptomatic in the COVID Nook M–F from 8:30–10AM & 1–2:30PM. Contact Ask-A-Nurse or fill out the self-report for a COVID-19 test.

Did you get tested off-campus? Fill out the self-report. 

Keep Your Coven Exclusive.

Rather than hosting or attending a large gathering, consider keeping your gathering small and binge-watching horror movies. This minimizes the risk of illness to you and your friends. 

Place a Locking Spell on Your Lair by Saying “Lockatious-My-Placsis."

Make sure to lock your lair when you leave, or else vampires might see it as an open invitation. 

Brews and Crews Tips

 

Don’t Mix Elixirs and Brews.

As stated earlier, WSU is a dry campus, and we do not endorse nor support underage drinking. Mixing several types of alcohol and brews can cause you to feel the effects of alcohol faster and can lead to overconsumption. A good rule of thumb is to stick to one and remember to stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. 

Don’t Accept Potions From People You Don’t Know & Never Leave Your Brew Unattended.

Keep a watchful eye on your potions. Either brew them yourself or watch them be made to ensure they’re of excellent quality. 

Avoid sharing drinks with others or participating in drinking games as it can increase your risk of contracting COVID-19. Drinking games can lead to overconsumption.

Redbull Might Give You Wings But Mixing it With Boos Won’t Make You Feel Fang-tastic.

Energy drinks can lessen the depressant effects of alcohol, causing you to drink more than you intended. Because caffeine keeps you awake, it enables you to drink passed the point you would have otherwise passed out. This can lead to alcohol poisoning and overconsumption. Unfortunately, people may not realize you need help until it’s too late.

Don’t Drink & Fly

Make sure your phone is fully charged before you go out and you have your ringtone volume up. This ensures you’ll have enough battery to call for a safe broom ride home.

Never drink & drive or get into a vehicle with someone who has been drinking. Have a designated driver or use a ride-sharing service. WSU shuttles run nightly until midnight to East Lake. You can also use Uber or Lyft to get home safely. 

Squad Ghouls: Watch Out For Your Friends

If your friend is a ghostly white, get them to a safe space immediately. Recognize the signs of alcohol poisoning by remembering CUPS: Cold skin, Unconscious, PukingSlowed Breathing.  

It’s always better to bring a pack of friends with you to watch your back. You can request medical amnesty when helping someone get to safety. This policy covers the person who needs help and the one who seeks aid. This policy only covers those who are under 21. 

Hosting a Gathering With Creatures Under 21 is a Violation of the Social Host Ordinance.

Make sure not to have brews available at parties with creatures under the age of 21, or you’ll pay a fine price. 

Get Corny This Halloween When Asking For Consent.

Remember FRIES. No, not the fast-food! Consent is: Freely given, Reversible, Informed, Enthusiastic & Specific. Don’t forget intoxicated people can’t give consent.

Trust Your Wolverine Instincts and Howl For Help.

If something doesn’t feel right, leave the situation. Your safety is much more important than staying at a party or hurting someone’s feelings. Some numbers you can call are: 

  • 911 for emergency services 
  • 507.457.5555 for Campus Security 
  • 507.457.2956 for WSU Confidential Advocate, M–F 8AM–4:30PM
  • 507.452.4453 for Advocacy Center of Winona, 24/7

Don’t Let In All The Cryptids You Meet.

You never know if they will look out for your best interests. If something or someone seems off, kick them out. Once the mask comes off, you may not know who is hiding underneath. Do not let someone you do not know or trust into your dorm or home.

Know Your Surroundings and Plan a Jack-o-lantern Lit Route Home.

Don’t go it alone. Travel in a pack. Surrounding yourself with a small trustworthy group of friends can keep you safe from ghouls. Keep tabs on each other, and do not go anywhere you are unfamiliar with. If you want to be extra safe, consider sharing your phone’s location with a friend.   

Now that you know all our fang-tastic safety tips, you’re equipped for a successful night filled with spooky goodness. 

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Robin Woodhouse

Robin is majoring in Psychology with a minor in Studio Art and expects to graduate in 2023. She works with the WSU Health Promotions team as graphic design assistant and writer. In her free time, Robin like to bike and spend time with her pets.

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